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PDA supports members impacted by “pharmacy” closures at Boots

A number of Boots pharmacists have been impacted by a company decision to close some of its pharmacies due to business reasons, which are located within a larger retail store, and the PDA is supporting members with any consequences for their work.

Thu 4th November 2021 The PDA

Specific jobs become redundant when the needs of the business for employees to carry out work of a particular kind in the place where they are employed ceases or diminishes. Therefore, if a company no longer need a pharmacist at a location at which a member’s employment was located due to a decision to close the instore pharmacy, that person is subject to potential redundancy.

Though a specific role may be redundant, this does not automatically mean the individual ceases their employment if suitable alternative employment can be found, for example, if there is already a vacancy for a pharmacist role within a reasonable distance of that person’s home. 

However, a pharmacy closure could lead to the end of someone’s employment if there are no suitable alternatives available with the employer.

The law requires that employers must follow ‘collective consultation’ rules if they are potentially making 20 or more employees redundant within any 90-day period at a single establishment, which at Boots means consulting with PDA as the recognised trade union for pharmacists.  However, the recognition agreement between the union and Boots goes further and requires the company to also inform the union of redundancy plans impacting less than 20 employees.

This arrangement means the union can proactively support any pharmacists impacted by such a change. The PDA can provide pharmacists with advice and guidance regarding their rights in these circumstances and represent them should there be any dispute about the suitability of alternative employment, an actual redundancy decision or related issues.

Although negotiations, such as for pay, undertaken by the PDA can benefit all pharmacists in the bargaining unit (store/relief-based pharmacists) whether they are union members or not, the more tailored support provided for those challenging redundancy decisions cannot be provided to non-members, hence why the PDA encourages any pharmacist that is not yet a member, to join the PDA.

Related links

  • To contact your local Boots rep, please click here
  • The Redundancy factsheet can be found here

Not yet a PDA member?

If you have not yet joined the PDA, we encourage you to join today and ask your colleagues to do the same.

Membership is FREE to pharmacy students, trainee pharmacists and for the first three months of being newly qualified.


Read about our key member benefits here.




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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