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CHAPTER TWELVE

CHAPTER TWELVE

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CHAPTER TWELVE

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  1. CHAPTER TWELVE THE LAW RELATING TO EMPLOYEE RELATIONS

  2. Objectives of this chapter • Understand the process of trade union recognition • Examine the legislation surrounding the bargaining process • Outline the legislation that governs industrial action • Understand the difference between lawful and unlawful industrial action • Examine the prevalence of industrial action • Consider the protection given by law to a trade union member • Examine the role of the trade union member in health and safety and learning issues

  3. Trade union recognition • A formal agreement between the management and employees that the trade union represents all or a specified part of the workforce for the purpose of collective bargaining

  4. Recognition process • Voluntary • Semi-voluntary • Automatic recognition • Recognition by ballot

  5. Statutory recognition procedure • Automatic recognition or recognition by ballot • Employer has at least 21 employees • Trade union making the request must have a certificate of independence

  6. Role of CAC • Defining bargaining group • Adjudicating on automatic recognition • Deciding whether to proceed with a ballot • Helping to determine process for collective bargaining

  7. Impact of new recognition agreements • Mutual gains • Business as usual • Conflict continued

  8. Disclosure of information • Information without which the union would be impeded to a material degree when carrying out collective bargaining • Information which it would be good industrial relations practice to disclose

  9. Information that does not have to be disclosed • Information that might affect national security • Information that can only be disclosed by contravening other legislation (for example, the Data Protection Act 1998) • Information that has been given to the employer in confidence • Information relating specifically to an individual unless he/she gives consent • Information that could significantly damage the employer’s undertaking • Information obtained by the employer for the purpose of defending or bringing legal proceedings 

  10. Protection for a trade union member • At recruitment • Against detriment for being or not being a member

  11. Protection for TU representative • Carrying out duties relating to negotiations with the employer • Carrying out duties connected with their role (specifically listed in section 178(2) of TULRCA 1992) and duties that the employer has agreed they may carry out. The most likely examples are representing their members at disciplinary and grievance hearings. • Receiving information from the employer • Undergoing training relevant to their trade union duties, which is approved by their trade union or the TUC (Trade Union Congress)

  12. Industrial action immunities • Inducing a breach of contract • Intimidation • Conspiracy • Interference with a business by unlawful means • Inducing a breach of a statutory duty

  13. Lawful industrial action • Ballot • Notice of ballot • Notice of action as a result of ballot • Details of those involved in the industrial action

  14. Unlawful action • ‘Wildcat’ strikes • Secondary action • Injunctions • Damages

  15. Picketing • Purpose of peaceful communication or peaceful persuasion • Civil offences • Criminal offences • Limit on numbers involved

  16. Dismissal if involved in industrial action • No protection if action is unlawful • Twelve week period of protection for lawful action • Lock-out excluded

  17. Other TU duties • Health and safety • Learning representative