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History between the PDAU and the BPA

The General Secretary of the PDA Union, John Murphy, worked for Boots for 26 years until 2001, and was a member of the BPA for ten years between 1978 and 1988.

He gave evidence to the Central Arbitration Committee that he had become “extremely frustrated by the way in which the BPA behaved and its determination to maintain cordial relationships with the employer and its managers”, found it to be “ineffectual in protecting the interests of its members in its desire to please the employer” and HE said “the employer did not bargain on matters with the BPA but merely granted concessions to the BPA when it suited it”.link

The Assistant General Secretary of the PDA Union and Chairman of the PDA, Mark Koziol, previously worked for Boots. He said in 2007 “As a newly qualified pharmacist back in the 80s, I became a very loyal and motivated Boots employee. I was soon on the national executive of the Boots Pharmacists’ Association. In 1986, the company suddenly announced a massive reorganisation and made redundant many territorial general managers (TGMs). Although there was much protest, few employees had the will or the courage to take the company on, perhaps for fear of their own jobs.”link

When it was inaugurated in 2003, the PDA approached the BPA to discuss a merger, with a view to working together for the benefit of Boots pharmacists. A merger was discussed again in 2006 and on a number of subsequent occasions – in fact, the PDA Union has always been open to The negotiations have failed on each occasion as the BPA has chosen instead to maintain its close links with company

Following a successful tribunal claim on behalf of Boots pharmacists, where the company was found to have unlawfully deducted pharmacists’ wages, we were made aware that many pharmacists felt badly let down by Boots when they were led to believe by both the company and the BPA that their premium rate reductions were legal, only to find that to be incorrect. Boots pharmacists, especially those who were financially disadvantaged, will likely remember what happened in this case. link

The PDA Union asked in 2009 whether the BPA was a ‘poodle or a rottweiler’ in relation to its position on the Responsible Pharmacist Regulations and the Boots rest break policy. We were concerned that there was an expectation on Boots pharmacists to remain signed on as the Responsible Pharmacist during their lunch break, and that this does not constitute a break given the legal definition in the Working Time Directive. We asked the BPA to consider whether it is acting in its member’s interests or those of the employer. link

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England; Company No 4746656.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association is an appointed representative in respect of insurance mediation activities only of
The Pharmacy Insurance Agency Limited which is registered in England and Wales under company number 2591975
and is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (Register No 307063)

The PDA Union is recognised by the Certification Officer as an independent trade union.

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