Pay negotiations for former Boots pharmacists shows continuing benefit of PDA Union recognition

The PDA Union continues to negotiate pay for members and has secured above-inflation increases for members whose employment with Boots transferred under TUPE to new employers in the NHS and Prison Service.

Thu 3rd December 2020 PDA Union

The PDA Union has been able to use the rights protected under the Transfer of Undertakings and Protection of Employment (TUPE) Regulations to continue to negotiate improvements to pay and conditions for members whose employment has transferred from Boots to new employers in the NHS and Prison Service.

TUPE provides a number of important protections for members who are transferred to a new employer as a result of business decisions by their existing employer. These include protection of their contractual rights which in turn include the right to have the PDA Union continue to collectively bargain on their behalf, as was the case at Boots.

The PDA Union has been in negotiation with 3 NHS employers, wholly-owned subsidiaries of NHS Trusts and Sodexo for members employed in prisons. In each case, these employers had inherited employees and the PDA Union recognition agreement following the transfer of the business from Boots earlier this year.

Paul Moloney, PDA Union National Officer with responsibility for the negotiations explains.“It was a learning curve for all of us as this was the first time any of these employers had engaged with the PDA Union. It was however pleasing that, despite a few initial hiccups, we were able to have serious discussions on behalf of our members with each employer fully appreciating their obligation under law to engage meaningfully with us”. 

The outcome of each set of negotiations resulted in different settlements being agreed, sometimes as a mix of pay increase and a one-off lump sum, but the common theme is that each individual agreement has seen members pay increase by more than the rate of inflation now and a strategy to harmonise pay dates in line with the new employers established date, usually 1 April, meaning in some cases a further increase in April.

Paul continued: “Our objective always is to see members pay increase more quickly than inflation so that members standard of living increases. We appreciate these increases are modest, but they deliver that objective at a time of uncertain economic outlook when other much larger employers of pharmacists are seeking to freeze pay.”

In addition to these increases, the PDA Union has been able to confirm that members transferred from Boots will receive a pro-rata bonus payment made by Boots based on their service to the point of transfer. Learn more.

Each individual agreement sets out when the next pay discussions will take place in each of the employers.

Paul added: “This will vary from employer to employer but in any agreement where the next pay increase date has been moved either the negotiated increase is higher to take account of this or further increases or lump sums, to be applied in April, have already been agreed. Members are assured the PDA Union will be in contact before their next pay date to consult members on their priorities for the next negotiations”.

 

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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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