Thursday, 6 April 2017

Glasgow Pay Arrangements



A Home Carer from Glasgow has been in touch to say that she (and many others) work a 50 hour week and a 20 hour week the week week, so why don't they qualify for a NSWP payment in Week 1 at least?

Now that's a good question because fairness and common sense would suggest that such a shift working arrangement would qualify for an NSWP payment at Level B for at least half the year, perhaps more if overtime hours were also taken into account.

But I'm pretty sure that Glasgow City Council interprets these 'cockamamy rules' in a way that is to the disadvantage of Home Carers by treating the 2 weeks as a 35-hour average so that the staff concerned receive no payment. 

My own view is that the NSWP working hours payment ought to be paid on a 'pro rata' basis like other pay related benefits such as sick, holiday pay and sick pay - that way all Home Carers on a 35 hour working week would receive 35/37ths (or 95%) of a Level B NSWP payment.

The trade unions should be on to this as well if you ask me, because you don't have to work 37 hours before becoming eligible to join a union or to take part in a union strike ballot.

The real problem is that Glasgow City Council has just invented these 'cockamamy rules' which are impossible to justify as they go against the spirit and letter of the 1999 Single Status (Equal Pay) Agreement which is based on equal treatment for part-time workers.

  


Cockamamy Council 'Rules' (05/04/17)



As regular readers know, Action 4 Equality Scotland is challenging various aspects of Glasgow's WPBR (Workforce Pay and Benefits Review) which the City Council introduced back in 2006/07.

One of the most controversial aspects of the WPBR scheme is over additional payments that are made under the heading of NSWP (Non Standard Working Pattern) payments.

I wrote previously on the blog site about how the Glasgow's predominantly female jobs seem to fare badly under the WPBR compared to their male colleagues, and this is also true when it comes to NSWP payments. 

Because one of the NSWP 'rules' is a requirement for employees to work 37 hours before they qualify for 7 'working hours' NSWP points.

Now points mean prizes under the WPBR and 7 NSWP points means that a 37 hour a week employee qualifies for Level B Payment which was worth £800 a year in 2006 - almost £10,000 over 12 years - and a whole lot more than people have been receiving in terms of annual pay increases, for example.

So who made up this barmy 'rule' and on what kind of twisted logic is this NSWP rule based?

Because it's completely crazy if you ask me - people don't have to work 37 hours to qualify for holiday pay, sick pay, or maternity pay - for example.

And can it really be a coincidence that the vast majority of Glasgow City Council employees who work less than 37 hours a week are women? 

Curiously all of Glasgow's hardworking Home Carers were placed on 35 hour a week contracts some years ago, so they miss out on a Level B Payment even though they work 95% of a 37 hour working week.

The 1999 Single Status (Equal Pay) Agreement was supposed to ensure equal treatment for part-time workers, but that seems not to have happened in Glasgow where mysterious rules have been invented (by whom?) to exclude the council's lowest paid workers.

As far as I know the trade unions in Glasgow haven't called or even threatened a single strike to defend the rights of thousands of part-time workers affected by this cockamamy 'rule' which is a complete disgrace, if you ask me.

Because if points are to be awarded for hours worked, they should be pro-rated just like all other payments and benefits - not deliberately designed in such a way that treats women workers much less favourably than their male colleagues. 

No wonder the Labour leader of Glasgow City Council can't defend his party's position over equal pay, but readers are invited to drop Frank McAveety a note by email or Twitter and let him know what you think.

Email - frank.mcaveety@glasgow.gov.uk
Twitter - @FMcAveety


  


Glasgow's Pay Arrangements (02/04/17)


The workforce at Glasgow City Council is predominantly female - around 70% of its 27,000 or so employees are women.

So, all things being equal, you would expect women to occupy around 70% or of each job category and for women to be involved in 70% or so of all work related issues - from sickness absence and disciplinary hearings to interviews for a promoted post.


Unless, of course, there's a gender based explanation such as maternity or paternity leave - or there's some other factor at play such as discrimination, for example.


Here's an interesting table which shines a light on the payments Glasgow City Council staff receive for doing shift work - the Non-Standard Working Pattern (NSWP) part of Glasgow's Workforce Pay and Benefits review (WPBR). 

NSWP Percentage breakdown Grade 1 to 7
Grade
Male
Female
Totals
% of Males by grade in receipt of NSWP
% of females by grade in receipt of NSWP
0
3293
15441
18734
39.71%
81.07%
A
347
888
1235
4.18%
4.66%
B
2528
1382
3910
30.49%
7.26%
C
566
681
1247
6.83%
3.58%
D
1213
210
1423
14.63%
1.10%
E
20
43
63
0.24%
0.23%
F
325
402
727
3.92%
2.11%
TOTALS
8292
19047
27339
100.00%
100.00%
In receipt of NSWP
Gender
yes
no
Grand Total
% of All employees
% of employees in receipt of NSWP by gender
% of Gender in receipt of NSWP
Female
3606
15441
19047
69.67%
41.91%
18.93%
Male
4999
3293
8292
30.33%
58.09%
60.29%
TOTALS
8605
18734
27339
100.00%
100.00%
79.22%
Example: Total Female in receipt of NSWP divided by the overall total of both men and Woman in receipt of NSWP
Example: Total percentage of Female in receipt of NSWP divided by the total number of females employed

The figures are based on the WPBR in 2007 and number of things jump straight out to me:
  • Over 80% of women don't qualify for a NSWP payment because they score zero (0) points on the City Council's scoring system 
  • Far fewer women (19%) than men (60%) qualify for an NSWP payment even though women make up a big 70% majority of the City Council's workforce
  • Over 50% of male workers receive an NSWP payment at the higher paying B, C and D bands
  • Yet only 12% of women fall into the B,C and D bands.
Now I don't know who made up Glasgow's cockamamy scoring system, but if you ask me they have made up the rules in a way that punishes and discriminates against the jobs done by women. 

In the next few days I'll publish more information about the NSWP 'rules' and scoring system which I imagine will be of great interest to lots of readers in Glasgow.

As far as I know the unions in Glasgow have not called any strikes or even threatened industrial action over the operation of the NSWP scheme.