Pharmacists’ Views

Read what pharmacists are saying about the PDA Union and its efforts to give Boots pharmacists and pre-registration graduates an independent voice at work.

Yes PDA honestly represent Boots pharmacist in every way. I strongly urge every pharmacist to join PDA. Join and see for yourself. The support I received was fantastic.

 

When being an employee of such a large company it is important to have a voice. I do not feel that Boots listens to individuals, and thus having formal recognition of the PDA would be a step towards this goal.

 

This year Boots has cut my contracted hours from 12 to 4 per week, against my wishes. I wish I had known earlier about the support available from you in these cases.

 

The BPA no longer supports the interests of employee pharmacists. The BPA is too closely associated with the interests of Alliance Boots and cannot be said to be truly independent in either it’s advice to members or it’s feedback to the company.

 

Thank you for embarking on this journey which if successful will I believe greatly enhance working conditions for all Boots pharmacists

 

Recognition of the PDA would be a very healthy thing for Boots pharmacists and for the company. They need people who will challenge them strongly and independently when they get it wrong, but who will also help them to get it right. The PDA has vast experience in pharmacy and it would be enriching. The BPA is never going to get there, and its certainly had long enough if it was going to.

 

If the Boots Pharmacist Association (BPA) really cared about the interests of Boots Pharmacists then they should consider dissolution to leave the way clear for the PDA. The BPA, I fear, are in a hopelessly compromised position being unable to negotiate pay and conditions and only recognised by Boots management because of their lack of power and also, just by their existence, help in keeping out the PDA. They should reflect on how they are being used…… assuming they are actually independent of Boots management. Boots Pharmacists could help themselves right now by resigning from the BPA and joining the PDA otherwise I think future attacks on pay and conditions are inevitable. Unionisation with the PDA is their only defence.link

 

If Boots are not planning on doing anything wrong, then why should they be so afraid of formally recognising an INDEPENDENT union?

 

If any Boots pharmacist out there values their work-conditions and is prepared to prevent further erosion, then resign from the BPA and join PDA. The BPA are completely powerless to enforce or question anything. I was one of the pharmacists affected by their lunch-time policy, which was a complete joke. The BPA were powerless to do anything about it – they didn’t even raise it as an item in their correspondence, at a time when the PDA did a whole article on what was going on. Boots pharmacists should think about the future consequences of not doing anything.link

 

I would love to have the support of the PDA in dealings with Boots. I have changed to working occasional Saturdays as I felt if I did not accept this so called request, the alternative would have been far worse next time the matter was discussed.

 

I think that many of the BPA union executives genuinely seem to believe they’re doing well and making progress. The company maintains that change is always just over the horizon. The BPA is getting in the way and if it really cared about Boots pharmacists, it would step aside; it simply doesnt seem to see the hopelessness of its position. Even more worrying is the thought that maybe some BPA executives do see what’s going on but allow it to happen anyway. I think it all boils down to money cutting costs, including paying pharmacists less, is what the company seems to want. The reality betrays the rhetoric. I think if the BPA officials read this comment, theyd be in denial, resolve to redouble their efforts and obtain some apparently sincere promises from senior people in the company about how its all going to change and this time it will be different. The newer BPA execs would think that they can make a difference because the company appears to be listening to them, nodding its head in agreement, as it has done with others before. Theyd forge some new way of working together such as a new monthly meeting or a newsletter, for example rant and rave about what they’re going to do – and nothing, ultimately, will change because the company is pulling the strings. The BPA execs would not see that this is whats happening (or maybe some of them would!), time would pass, it would get some new executives and the cycle would repeat.

 

I support this proposal because I feel the time has come for all pharmacists to stand together and be represented as a whole in negotiations of employment terms and conditions, and professional matters in the interest of the profession going forward.

 

I feel that Boots puts pressure on pharmacists to change our agreed hours of work, change the days we work, to work bank holidays, decrease premium rates, not honour salary increases and just generally uses its corporate power against which we are powerless

 

I do not feel comfortable being at the mercy of Boots. The BPA simply agree to anything Boots desire. Independent union support is reassuring, and the PDA have proven time and again that they will defend our rights tooth and nail.

 

I believe it is in our interest to have a true independent Union from which to seek advice and I believe that for all the good intentions the BPA have it is just too close to Boots to be truly independent.

 

I am really pleased that the PDAU will try to represent us. When I go to work, I work in fear as I have to hit my MUR targets, sign ups, customer care measure and many other things. If I do not, my line manager will remind me of my contract obligations

 

I am about to join Boots as a full time employee and would very much like to maintain my PDA union member status.I have been a member of PDA for many years and have always felt extremely well supported and protected.

 

I am a member of the BPA and can see their value in the past but I think times have changed and I feel a bit let down by them. Boots has reduced pharmacists pay and conditions bit by bit over around 10 years and I am sure it will continue. The BPA have been powerless to stop this and I am not sure they have even tried. When Sunday premiums were reduced, they advised that the changes were legal. This was proved in court to not be true, but it was too late for the BPA members who had already accepted it, so pharmacists are actually paid LESS as a result of following BPA advice and not challenging the company. For a union to sign an agreement saying they will freely give up any bargaining rights seems absurd – as a BPA member, I don’t recall being consulted on this. I can’t see how this arrangement benefits anyone but Boots and in this case I do believe my union was putting Boots and its own interests (i.e. existence) above the interests of its members. I think the best solution is for collaboration between BPA and PDA. Yes, it is beneficial to have a union with representation from Boots pharmacists, but this has often been middle management, which seems like a conflict of interests. If Boots has no intentions of eroding conditions further then they have nothing to be afraid of.

 

Hope Boots will now stop wriggling and let the PDA properly represent the staff in an effective way, unlike the pseudo-union Boots Pharmacist Association.link

 

BPA is ineffective and needs to be replaced by an organisation that will properly represent the pharmacists who work for Boots.

 

Boots employees need the PDA because the alternative union i.e. the BPA is too much in the pocket of Boots to be any use to its members.

 

As a relief pharmacist for Boots I was only made aware of this petition in the last few days when I stumbled across the info in store.You have my full support in pushing for this recognition..I have worked for Boots all my career 30yrs +

 

A long overdue representation for staff employed by a large multinational organisation which in the past and even now expects more from its staff than they are willing to pay for, especially younger staff who are trying to build a career.

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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