When Lloydspharmacy Decide Full Time Workers Are No Longer Full Time
We have evidence that Lloyds have assumed that full time working is now 45 hours per week. As a consequence they have recalculated employees bank holiday entitlement pro-rata.
Some information has come to our attention that will be of relevance for those of you employed by Lloydspharmacy. We have always understood that Lloyds' policy regarding bank/public holidays was that if the holiday in question fell on your normal working day you were entitled to have this day off or take the time in lieu if you were required to work that day. It appears that Lloyds now wishes to change this policy in order to ensure that its current practice is fair for everyone and it is intended that it will be pro-rated for part timers as of 1st January 2008.
We have a number of concerns as to the legality of such a change and the manner in which this change has been introduced by the company. One of our concerns is that when employers wish to make changes to your terms and conditions of employment they should enter into a process of consultation with you with a view to securing your agreement regarding the change. This would not appear to have been done from the various discussions we have had with our members.
Our second concern is that it appears that your employer is seeking to impose or introduce this change retrospectively for the holiday period 2008-2009 stating that it comes into effect as of 1st January 2008. If the change was to be introduced at all, surely it should have effect as of 1st January 2009 at the very earliest.
Our main concern is the change itself. While many of you will not regard yourselves as part time employees, you may now be classed as part time depending on what your employer regards as being full time work. For many of you who signed contracts in 2007 for example working 39 hours per week would have been considered full time. Your contract of employment will have referred to your annual leave and bank/public holiday entitlement and you would have received the maximum leave entitlement possible (with the exception of days accrued for length of service). Under the new arrangements, because some of your colleagues work longer hours for example 45 hours per week you will be regarded as a part time worker. Your entitlement to bank/public holidays will consequently be pro-rated and you could lose a number of days bank/public holiday.
As your Union we are extremely anxious to ensure that this does not happen as we are of the opinion that this change represents a fundamental change to your terms and conditions of employment which is to your substantial detriment. We believe that what your employer is doing is taking leave from one employee who was once considered full time and giving it to another employee who under the old arrangements would not have benefitted from annual leave entitlement. The change in the policy is therefore clearly at your expense.
We feel that 39 hours per week should be considered as full time work and that it should not be a matter for your employer to decide to change your contractual benefits based on what it considers to be full time hours. Otherwise, there is a very real danger that your employer or any other employer could over time attempt to reduce leave entitlement even further by employing new staff to work longer hours. It also seems to be the case that you may be considered to be full time for the purposes of annual leave entitlement but part time when it comes to allocating bank/public holidays.
We recommend that you immediately check if there have been any attempts by your employer to change your holiday entitlement. For those of you who are affected by this change and we suspect there will be a vast number of you, we suggest that you challenge this through the company's formal grievance process raising your own grievance. We invite you to respond to this news piece with your thoughts and at a later date may decide to pursue matters by way of a group grievance.