Date: Monday July 20 2009
Care sector union, UNISON, today condemned Scottish charity, Quarriers', threat to dismiss all their 2,000 staff unless the union agrees to cuts in wages and conditions. Quarriers' - one of Scotlands biggest charitable organisations providing services for vulnerable children, homeless young people and adults with disabilities - threatened on Friday to issue redundancy notices to all its 2000 staff.
This follows the charity's management proposal -tabled in May - to cut staff night shift payments, and payments for public holidays. Most drastically, the charity wants to cut sick pay by a quarter for any worker with less than 5 years service.
Instead of continuing negotiations with UNISON Quarriers' Branch - a meeting was scheduled for Friday 10th July but was cancelled by the employers with no explanation - Quarriers' wrote to UNISON officially notifying them that unless UNISON agrees to their proposal they will make everyone redundant and re-engage them on new terms and conditions.
Stephen Brown, Branch Secretary, of UNISON Quarriers' Branch said, “Like many staff in Quarriers I am on holiday this week and I was horrified by this move by Quarriers. UNISON recognises Quarriers' is feeling the financial pinch and were prepared to meet Quarriers' in order to negotiate properly. I’m therefore disappointed that Quarriers have decided to fall back on gun boat diplomacy by threatening our members with the sack.”
He added, “Our members work very hard for the charity and provide an excellent service to some of the most vulnerable in society. Quarriers' continually say that they value their staff but this threat shows how much they really value us. Quarriers' should withdraw this notice immediately and sit around the table and negotiate with us in a meaningful way.”