Author Topic: "With Mallinson a fore-thought" - Half-Truths Exposed As Domiciliary Care Team Faces Axe  (Read 78203 times)

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Offline Muggins

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Supposing that their members are taxpayers and the union reps represent them?

The union's 'business' is the workers interests.  No workers - no tax.
No work = more benefits. Maybe that amount is a good investment.

Well said Steve.  You don't get a first class service excelleent rated at it by cutting it and saying how crap it is.
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Offline Dougal

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Some posts from this topic have been moved to Taxpayer Subsidies For Trade Union Activities? in the Political News & Debate board.

Dougal

www.talkswindon.org is a venue, not a person or political entity. As such, it hopes to encourage input and discussion on any topic, from all walks of Swindon life.   

Offline Richard Symonds

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Won't Councillor Mallinson incur Redundancy payments by getting rid of these people and if so how much will that be?

What worries me that too much of this is being done in haste without consideration for the consequences.

I heard people at Council ask what safeguards have been put in place?  To date I have not heard an answer.

The Devil is in the Detail and no one seems to know the detail least of all Councillor Mallinson, but that does not surprise me?

and finally remember the old Sales Adage.

There is always someone who will do something a little cheaper a lot worse and those fools who do not investigate matters properly are their lawful prey

Maybe as councillor Mallinson stands to be humiliated in Walcot in May he is passed caring (forgive the pun)!
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Offline 20Eyes

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and finally remember the old Sales Adage.

There is always someone who will do something a little cheaper a lot worse and those fools who do not investigate matters properly are their lawful prey

Fair point, but throwing taxpayers' money away needlessly isn't very clever either. Just because something's more expensive doesn't automatically make it better.
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Offline Geoff Reid

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Just because something's more expensive doesn't automatically make it better.

Actually, I'm told that when Councillors Bluh & (Edwards?) were questioned about a social services budget overspend in 2010/2011 at last nights cabinet, they made quite a lot  of noise about Swindon's care services being rated as 'excellent' by the care commission.

I haven't read the care commission reports on Swindon but, from recent personal experience and comparing Swindon to Telford/Shropshire on a like-for-like basis I am of the opinion that if Telford is 'good', then Swindon really is, (or I should probably now say 'was'), excellent.

Bizarre isn't it.  This council actually got something right - social care - and it did quite a lot of chest-beating about it.  Until the time came for them to start disparaging the same people for doing the same job because it suits a particular political ideology.

NB.  @ Bogomil & Andy Harrison:  Thanks for your offer to discuss the report you've had sight of.  Although it's always interesting to chat I'd prefer that you just published the damn thing so the wider public have a broader spectrum of information to consider.   :)

 

Offline 20Eyes

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Actually, I'm told that when Councillors Bluh & (Edwards?) were questioned about a social services budget overspend in 2010/2011 at last nights cabinet, they made quite a lot  of noise about Swindon's care services being rated as 'excellent' by the care commission.

Fair point. I suppose if you throw enough money at something you would expect it to perform reasonably. I still dispute the idea that something that's expensive is automatically better, especially when it comes to staff wages.
"Censorship reflects society's lack of confidence in itself. It is a hallmark of an authoritarian regime." ~ Potter Stewart

Offline Geoff Reid

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 Oh, I'm not neccessarily disagreeing with you, but I'd like to see the report Andy Harrison has/has seen before taking a specific view on the service given by 60+ employees about to be sacked.

Offline Martin Wicks

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Time off for trade union duties, whatever next? Now the thing about Mallinson's reference to this time as "inefficiencies" is this. Does this tosser accept the right of trades unions to have their legal right to time off for trade union duties or does he think the Council should break the law?

The attractive thing for Mallinson and co is that with private companies they don't have to spend time discussing workplaces issues with trades union do they.

The workforce, of course, can only do what work they are given. Mallinson says they are "too expensive". At £8 an hour? He is the bloke who is supposed to be in charge of this area of the Council. As Mavis Childs said, isn't there a problem with the management here? And Mallinson is supposed to be responsible for the management of the service.

One thing is clear. You cannot have a decent service for £15 an hour.

One other thing - this question of travel time in between visits to clients. I am still awaiting a written response to a question at the Council meeting over this. It appears that private companies do not give their staff travel time between patients. In the Panorama programme in 2009 the absence of this travel time was very common. Mallinson could not tell me at the Council meeting if these private companies gave their staff travel time. If they don't, as seems to be the case, then they are robbing the Council of money because they are not giving their clients the time they are supposed to spend with them.


Offline 20Eyes

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Does this tosser accept the right of trades unions to have their legal right to time off for trade union duties or does he think the Council should break the law?

'Time off' is one thing, and something that's reasonable (assuming they're actually around to do their job now and again).

However, the idea that the taxpayer is paying for 1.5 months worth of 'time off' at a rate of £45p/h out of a 6 month period is, surely, wholly unacceptable.

If people want to be in unions, and unions are allowed to charge them for that decision, then the unions should be funding union members who are on union business. How on earth might that be considered unfair in any way?
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Offline Geoff Reid

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I now have the report referred to by Andy Harrison, and a couple of other documents to go with it. At first glance they don't appear to provide a cost break-down of Cllr Mallinsons £45 an hour figure, in fact they contradict it.

Will publish them when I get home.

Offline Bogomil

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Time off for trade union duties, whatever next? Now the thing about Mallinson's reference to this time as "inefficiencies" is this. Does this tosser accept the right of trades unions to have their legal right to time off for trade union duties or does he think the Council should break the law?


Now that’s not quite true Martin is it ….  :wink:
No wonder trade unionists get the reputation of twisting the truth.  ;D

A trade union official is entitled to “REASONABLE TIME OFF WITHOUT PAY”

What is reasonable is up to the employer and Union to negotiate BUT there is NO automatic right in LAW… so if one of your GMB or Unison Officials were refused for a valid reason then the council would NOT be breaking the law.

Maybe you need to read up a bit more Martin  :wink:

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Employment/TradeUnions/Tradeunionsintheworkplace/DG_10027556

Offline Chav

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Are you a Union man then bogy?
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Offline moley

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my understanding was that  there are laws of consultation which apply to any large employer making people redundant...

As part of the consultation someone who is at risk can typically invite a colleague to attend the meetings with them (similarly for disciplinary scenarios).  At my employer this is viewed as "part of the job" (we aren't unionized) if you're asked to be someone's support at a meeting.

I wonder if this is counted as "union time" or normal time for union reps... because if I were in a union I'd probably invite my shop steward to be my buddy if I was in a consultation (and that's surely relevant at SBC at the moment).

?

Moley

Offline Simon

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So, 20, could you please supply a reference to the data which makes you think that we (the taxpayer) are paying our public servants for 1 and a half months in every six to participate in union meetings?


It comes from the Adver article that both Steve Wakefield and Ringer have already linked to:

http://www.swindonadvertiser.co.uk/news/8894678.Council_criticised_over_home_care_cuts/

I don't 'think' it's what happening, it's what we have been told is happening. I can't quite believe we'd be paying carers to sit around in union camp for 365 hours out of a six month period, which would means it's little wonder that those who need care aren't receiving it.

Hence my belief that the data should be challenged and verified.


Quote from: Adver
Among the “inefficiencies” he has found in the department is 365 hours in wages paid to staff for attending trade union meetings in six months last year.


Are we all agreed that those 365 hours are a total value across all employees for the 6 month period, rather than 365 hours per employee during those 6 months?

None of us knows whether all those hours were spent by one person, or whether it was a total of all person hours spent in union activities, and what they were actually doing, because the Adver doesn't tell us. The available data is insufficient to reach a conclusion.

Quote from: Adver
In total, there are 9,000 hours of care which need to be delivered across the whole town each week, split among private carers and public.


Assuming that this is true, and that 6 months consists of 26 weeks (give or take a day or so), that means that a total of 234 thousand hours is should be spent providing care over a six month period.

365 hours out of 234 thousand isn't really all that much in the long run. It's just over 0.15%. I spend more time each week than that just filling in my timesheet.

So why do you say...

I can't quite believe we'd be paying carers to sit around in union camp for 365 hours out of a six month period,


... which kind of implies that all employees have spent 365 hours each in union activities in 6 months.

I invite you to clarify your statement  :)
We are all in this together, but some of us are more in it than others (with apologies to George Orwell)

Offline 20Eyes

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Are we all agreed that those 365 hours are a total value across all employees for the 6 month period, rather than 365 hours per employee during those 6 months?

Happy to clarify, it's very simple:

According to the figures we've been led to believe are the case, 365 hours - or around 1.5 working months (based on a working day of 8 hours - yes, I doubt they do that much either) - during a 6 months period were spent not providing care but, instead, on undefined union 'business'.

However you slice it, people who needed 365 hour's worth of care did not receive it, even though the taxpayer was still paying for it.

It's incredible, if ANY other reason were given as to why carers were being paid £16, 425 NOT to provide care, people would be up in arms.

I have no idea why people are forced to pay union members to do union business. If these people are so keen on their unions, they should be footing the bill themselves. I fail to see why taxpayers are funding this charade. No wonder there's quite so many union hours to attend... if this kind of thing is replicated throughout the civil service (as I'm sure it is), we're spending hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of pounds on people not to do their jobs.

That might have flown during the 'boom' times of the last government, it doesn't quite wash now.
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Offline bobwright

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Spent 50% of the day today with key professionals checking they had been meeting the standards expected of them to care for staff

Spent nearly 3 hours at a meeting last night with key professionals and the Administration checking that public money is being used wisely and effectively

I probably stopped these people from doing what they really wanted to do however sometimes a few hours spent with key individuals can make a big difference both in cost and outcome

Ironically if I didn’t do these things I would be accused of not doing my job?

Offline 20Eyes

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Bob, it's an intrinsic part of everyone's job to go through appraisals, training and cost-effectiveness assessment. They are aspects of the job that apply to everyone.

That's very, very different to attending diversity awareness meetings put on by the union, or attending union meetings to discuss union business. And, let's not forget, not all staff members will have chosen to join the union - as it's not essential to them performing their roles properly.
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Offline Steve Wakefield

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I know this thread appears to now be discussing issues around unions so I gave this some thought before posting not a lot but some.

Bob, it's an intrinsic part of everyone's job to go through appraisals, training and cost-effectiveness assessment. They are aspects of the job that apply to everyone.

That's very, very different to attending diversity awareness meetings put on by the union, or attending union meetings to discuss union business. And, let's not forget, not all staff members will have chosen to join the union - as it's not essential to them performing their roles properly.


Organised labour and employee relations are always welcomed by good employers the first factory acts were 1835 and there are many studies carried out of workplace behaviour. Joining an organised labour body/organisation/works council is a choice and a good employer accepts their part of the barggain and duty of care.

If a road death costs 1.6 million http://www.brake.org.uk/government-must-act-to-tackle-preventable-road-deaths-and-injuries-which-cost-uk-economy-p33-billion-last-year or 33 billion a year how much does employee deaths and injuries and poor or inapropriate working practice cost? What are the hidden costs? Searching family records I found the cost out in personal injury and deaths of the coal mining industry, railway industry, canal industry seafaring all cost my family at that time dear. The deaths are tragic in themselves, all this is recorded due to legislation passed in the 1830-50s did we learn from it? I hope we did. I have had colleagues seriously injured and killed/died of other means in the work place that is why as an employee and employer I have always worked with workers reps and employers and a lot of that was in my own time, and I have never begrudged it.

I was only saying to my son last night that as a child I grew up in the industrial northwest and I used to see old men dressed up in ill fitting suits bent over almost double coughing up and finding it difficult to breathe, with blue marks, buttons down the back and scars on them gained from a life of hard graft. Missing fingers  like my own grandfather, and some of them (far too many) had lost their sight or had it badly damaged in one or both eyes, or had hearing loss. They would say to me in this age of the white heat of technology the world will get better, be richer, be healthier be better educated, with better pensions. You will never have to endure what we did; work all our lives, pay out for everything and get nothing  back in return. That looks like that is about to return as people will work longer, pay more and get very little for it!
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Offline 20Eyes

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Steve, I fully support everyone's right to join a union. I fully respect their choice if they decide to be a member. I fully support the right of unions to exist.

What I do not agree with is being forced to pay, as a non-union member, my money to help fund union members on union business.

It's clearly highly unfair and should be stopped. Especially in these days of austerity, we should not be funding union members to do things other than the jobs we're paying them to do. And certainly not at the rate it appears to be happening here.

I sincerely doubt the public at large realise how much of their money is being spent simply to fund union reps etc.

Maybe if the unions stopped handing out such massive amounts of their members' cash to keep the Labour party afloat, they'd have enough money not to have the taxpayer fund their activities?
"Censorship reflects society's lack of confidence in itself. It is a hallmark of an authoritarian regime." ~ Potter Stewart

Offline Muggins

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20 "it's an intrinsic part of everyone's job to go through appraisals, training and cost-effectiveness assessment. They are aspects of the job that apply to everyone"

See, I think that 'diversity awareness is' an essential part of of anyone's training. 

If we don't do it, we (Vol Sector) don't get an understanding or funding.
Oi! Listen mush. Old eyes, remember? I’ve been around the block a few times. More than a few. They’ve knocked down the blocks I’ve been around and rebuilt them as bigger blocks. Super blocks. And I’ve been round them as well.  The Doctor (Night Terrors)