Dear Colleagues, Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992 Section 231 Industrial Action Ballot at Wilko Distribution Centres The results of this ballot for industrial action are: Number of individuals entitled to vote in the ballot - 1628 Number of votes cast - 987 Number of “YES” votes - 835 Number of “NO” votes - 151 Number of spoilt or otherwise invalid voting papers - 1 Votes cast in the ballot as a percentage of individuals who were entitled to vote was 60.6%. I am now consulting further as to our next steps. Yours fraternally, GARY CARTER GMB NATIONAL OFFICER
Posted: 3rd September 2019
TIME IS RUNNING OUT! Don't forget the industrial action ballot closes on Tuesday 3rd September at 12 noon. Please make sure you have your say and use your vote today. If you haven't already sent your postal ballot then please make sure you send it today or by tomorrows post the latest to have a chance of being received before the deadline. Vote!
Posted: 30th August 2019
Posted: 26th August 2019
Strike Ballot - Last Chance to Vote Dear Member, The GMB Union Strike Ballot closes at 12 noon on Tuesday 3rd September 2019. Please use your vote. Make sure you have your say. Every vote counts. Please post your ballot paper back in good time. Regards, Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 26th August 2019
Great meeting tonight! Fantastic turnout, lively debate and discussion! Vote!
Posted: 22nd August 2019
Dear Member Union members are provided with legal protection for up to 12 weeks if they take part in strike action. This means an employer cannot fairly dismiss a union member for taking part in strike action, where the union has conducted a strike action ballot in accordance with legislation. GMB is currently conducting a strike action ballot and calling on members to Support Strike Action because team members deserve to spend more time with their families and less time working weekends. Regards Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 22nd August 2019
Dear colleagues, I wanted to do a quick update as we have had a lot of questions locally within the DC's around some of the terminology regarding breaching contracts for taking part in strike action and what the negative impact could be. The below information is from GOV.UK "Dismissal for industrial action You can’t be dismissed for industrial action if: ⦁ it’s called as a result of a properly organised ballot ⦁ it’s about a trade dispute between workers and their employer (eg about your terms and conditions) ⦁ a detailed notice about the industrial action (which is legally required) has been given to the employer at least 7 days before it begins You can claim unfair dismissal at an employment tribunal if you’re dismissed for taking industrial action at any time within the 12 weeks after the action began." So what this would mean in its basic form is that as the GMB has ticked all the required boxes and then as is your right to take part in protected industrial action, having breached your contract, this would then normally mean you wouldn't be entitled pay for the day or days of strike action. To ensure protection and legal compliance there has been a lot of work going on in the background, locally with the reps, convenors and branch secretaries planning and scrutinising the accuracy of the membership list. We have then all been feeding into Gary Carter at National GMB office who has worked closely with the legal team. As you may recall leading up to the point of the ballot the frustration many of you felt, including ourselves, of being all ready to go and it then feeling like groundhog day and comparisons made to Brexit whilst waiting for the green light that we were legally compliant. All of this work and delay, although frustrating is the result of the Conservative anti-trade union, Trade Union Act introduced in 2016 to add hurdles to the process to deter and make it harder for workers to fight for their rights (so remember this in the next general election). I just want to finish off by reminding and ensuring you that the legal compliance requirements have been achieved to give you the option to take part in protected industrial action. Please use your vote. Take action. Support the strike and give us the mandate to fight on your behalf for a better work life balance. With Regards, Jon Smith GMB Regional Officer Yorkshire & North Derbyshire
Posted: 21st August 2019
WILKO DISTRIBUTION - GMB STRIKE BALLOT Dear member, You should have received your ballot paper from Electoral Reform Society (ERS). If you haven’t please see your local GMB rep and we’ll get a duplicate paper sent out. Please complete the ballot paper and send back to ERS as soon as possible. It’s important all GMB members vote and you have your say. We’re asking you to support Strike Action We don’t do this lightly, but management should listen to the workforce and reduce weekend working. If Wilko believe in family values then they should respect their employees’ right to spend time with their families. Support Strike Action, Vote Yes. Regards Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 20th August 2019
MEETING We have arranged a meeting for this Thursday, 22nd August at 7.15pm onwards for members to come and discuss the current process and raise any queries you may have. Jon Smith, Regional Officer and Gary Carter, National Officer are scheduled to attend. Due to the short notice and expected turnout, we have had to move to a larger, more suitable venue: Whitwell Community Centre The Square Whitwell S80 4NN. All members are welcome to attend. Many thanks, we look forward to seeing you there.
Posted: 20th August 2019
Following on from numerous queries we have received GMB would just like to clarify a few job roles that have not been included in the current industrial action ballot. • Head Office employed TMs • Engineers • Executive Grades The law around a ballot for industrial action is both complex and extremely strict. If the criteria is not met then any industrial action taken could be deemed as unlawful. It is due to these reasons that the aforementioned roles have been unable to vote.
Posted: 16th August 2019
GMB Strike Ballot - Actions Speak Louder than Words Dear Member You will have received a number of communications from management and there will be more. These will differ in content and tone, but the purpose is the same. They don’t want you to vote, and they want to dissuade you from voting Yes in the strike action ballot. GMB is calling on all members to use your vote and vote yes in support of strike action. • Management talk about family values, but took away family time. • Management talk about reducing weekend working, but this hasn’t happened. The time for words is over, management need to reduce weekend working now and guarantee it for the future. Actions speak louder than words. Make sure you use your vote. Support each other, Support Strike Action. Action is needed to get management to reduce weekend working. Yours sincerely Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 13th August 2019
DISPUTE UPDATE - 2nd AUGUST 2019 Dear Member, GMB members in the distribution centres in Magor and Worksop voted overwhelmingly by 81% to 19% to reject the company’s revised offer on weekend working. The GMB Union held further talks with Wilko following the result but these broke down because Wilko wouldn’t agree a reduction in weekend working. The current weekend working rota’s make no sense and need to change now. Under employment legislation there is a legal process GMB must follow and we have now formally notified Wilko that we will be conducting a strike action ballot. Ballot papers will be sent to your postal address by the Electoral Reform Society (ERS) from Tuesday 13th August and must be returned to ERS by 12 Noon on Tuesday 3rd September. Make sure you vote. Vote Yes to take Strike Action. Yours sincerely, Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 2nd August 2019
Wilko Pay Offer 2019/20 Ballot Result Dear Member The GMB Union pay ballot closed on Thursday 11th July 2019 and the papers have now been counted. The pay offer ballot result is as follows To Accept the offer 62% To Reject the offer 38% We will inform Wilko that the pay offer has been accepted by GMB Union members and ask them to put the pay increase into people’s pay packets as soon as possible. Thank you for taking part in the ballot and having your say on pay. Yours sincerely Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 16th July 2019
WEEKEND DISPUTE BULLETIN - 16th JULY 2019 Dear Member, GMB members in the distribution centres in Magor and Worksop voted overwhelmingly by 81% to 19% to reject the company’s revised offer on weekend working. GMB members have consistently told us that they want to spend more time with their families and the current weekend working arrangements are unacceptable. Peoples’ frustrations and anger have been increased when there have been a lack of work at weekends and employees have been asked whether they wish to go home. Also members have said that they have little faith in the recruitment drive when the applications for weekend work have been so numerous, yet the recruitment from all of those applicants has been minimal. The GMB Union has held further talks with Wilko since the result, but these have broken down because Wilko will not guarantee a reduction in weekends off before the peak period commences. All Wilko were prepared to offer was a single rest day on a Saturday or Sunday prior to peak. GMB members have told us they want a reduction in weekends and before peak starts. The company’s proposal did not do what GMB members want. GMB believes this is achievable if Wilko increased recruitment and if necessary brought in more agency staff to fill the gaps in the interim. The current weekend working rota’s make no sense and need to change now. The GMB has informed Wilko that we will be moving to a full strike action ballot and the official notification as required in law will be sent to the company imminently. If you’re not a GMB Union member you can see your workplace representative to join. If you’ve not updated your address and contact details then please do so ASAP to make sure you get your vote in the ballot. Please return your ballot to ensure you have you say on this issue. Yours sincerely Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 16th July 2019
Weekend Working Dispute – Ballot Result Dear Member The ballot of GMB members at DC1 & DC2 closed on Friday 28th June 2019. The ballot papers have been counted and the result is as follows: Members in DC1 & DC2 have both rejected Wilko revised offer: To accept the company’s offer 19% To reject the company’s offer 81% This is an overwhelming rejection of company’s offer and stance on weekend working. We have informed Wilko of the result and will now be moving to a full strike action ballot. Urgent reminder - If you have not already updated your address and contact details with GMB Union, please can you do so by Friday 5th July 2019. Yours sincerely Gary Carter National Officer
Posted: 1st July 2019
Dear Member Correction You may have received a letter from Wilko about Weekend Working. Near the bottom of the letter it makes reference to the pay offer. For clarity, nothing has been agreed with Wilko. The pay offer is subject to a ballot of GMB members and they will decide whether to accept or reject the pay offer. Yours sincerely Gary Carter
Posted: 13th June 2019
WEEKEND WORKING DISPUTE – 11th June 2019 Dear Colleagues, GMB has been in talks with Wilko to try to resolve the weekend working dispute. Throughout these negotiations we’ve stressed that GMB members want less weekend working and there needs to be an immediate improvement in the rota’s. Wilko have not been able to commit to this. What Wilko have said is they’re committed to recruiting enough additional employees to move to 1 in 3 outside the peak period (rota’s would remain as they are now through peak). The full proposal from Wilko is outlined below for your consideration. GMB NEXT STEPS - BALLOT The GMB intends to hold a ballot on the Wilko proposal. The ballot will be postal and your choice will be to either accept or reject the Wilko proposal. If GMB members reject the offer then we will hold a strike action ballot. Please make sure your contact details are up to date so we can send you a ballot paper. Please look out for your ballot paper in the post. If you don’t receive a ballot paper, then contact your local GMB rep and they will arrange for a ballot paper to be sent to out to you. Remember, only GMB members get a say and a ballot paper. Yours sincerely, Gary Carter National Officer WILKO PROPOSAL Principles 1. Wilko are committed to reduce the amount of weekend working through the recruitment of weekend workers. We explained we are committed to our goal which is to achieve a 1 in 3 working pattern for all team members (outside of our peak period). To help achieve this, we’re committed to advertising for and employing team members on weekend only contracts and we’ll continue to do this until we have enough resources for a 1 in 3 working pattern (outside of our peak period). In simple terms, every time each DC recruits a third more team members the number of weekends worked will reduce. This equates to 74 teams members in DC1 and 37 team members are recruited in DC2. 24 weekend workers are due to start at DC1 on 15th/16th June. 5 weekend workers have been recruited at DC2 and 19 are due to start on 11th & 19th June 2019. 1 in 3 will be achieved for all team members when DC1 achieves a total headcount of 1,586 and DC2 achieves a total headcount of 859 Every week we will share the number of team members we have recruited and the total number of team members for each DC with the GMB. 2. Store Delivery We have also reduced the number of weekend stores serviced by 5% to support the number of weekends worked. This has been reduced by 15 stores in DC1 and 5 in DC2. We are committed to review the store base weekly. 3. DC1 Nights Following positive survey results, team members on Nights in DC1 at their request are moving to a “5 on 3 off” rota, which supports their work/life balance. Team members will start this new work pattern on 30th June 2019. The remaining nights team members will be subject to the 1 in 3 proposal when that can be delivered. 4. 5/6 Team Members These team members will remain on their current rota patterns until enough weekend workers have been recruited to apply the first frequency reduction. There will also be the option to trial a 5/7 contract for an 8-week period. 5. 5/7 Team Members These team members will continue with their current terms and conditions working alternate weekends (Saturday and Sunday) until enough weekend workers have been recruited to apply the first frequency reduction. Continuing working alternate weekends in the interim ensures that you get regular weekends off in the 1 in 2 weekend working pattern. 6. One Off Financial Payment £100 For all team members employed @ 10th June 2019 (with no additional conditions) to be paid end of August 2019. This is a goodwill gesture for the successful introduction of 7 day working recognising the commitment required from Team Members. 7. Scope of this Proposal The proposal in its entirety applies to TMs levels 1 to 4 within DC1/DC2.
Posted: 11th June 2019
UPDATE - 7th June 2019 We wanted to give an update in regards to the ongoing weekend working dispute at both DCs as we are fully aware of the frustration with how long the process is taking and this has been relayed to the GMB National Officer. At both DCs the teams have been waiting while some last minute dialogue has been taking place between Wilko and GMB National office to try and finalise the wording of the company offer and this has resulted in the need to get some of the previously raised points re-challenged adding further delay. We have been informed this morning by GMB national office that Wilko wishes to have one more last and final meeting on Monday 10th June before the offer is put to members. The current stance is that this will be attended to see if there is the possibility for further movement that could benefit the membership but will also be the final meeting attended and the offer will be put to members immediately post meeting. After discussion with our National Officer this morning, we have reiterated our position that a ballot has to go out early next week irrespective of which way Monday's meeting goes and this has been agreed. Just to be clear, the final offer will be put to both DC1 and DC2 members to see if they find the offer acceptable or not. As soon as we receive any further updates from National office they will be posted immediately.
Posted: 7th June 2019
GMB (DC1) UPDATE – 6th June 2019 Firstly, apologies for the delay in providing this latest update. Circumstances outside of the DC1 team’s control have prevented this landing earlier this week, however following discussions with our Regional Officer, Jon Smith, we are now able to provide this update. Following the commitment made by Wilko to achieving 1 in 3 weekends for all members, regardless of shift or contract (apart from rolling pattern TMs), a number of calls and meetings have taken place headed by the GMB National Officer over the last few days to discuss the finer details in relation to the transition. Wilko are about to confirm a final offer to GMB and as this offer is expected to be significantly different to the current rotas, we are duty bound to give members their say and vote on whether they accept or reject this offer. Once the offer is received in writing, ballot papers will be sent to all full DC1 members via post early next week. If this is rejected, then GMB at DC1 will instigate the legal process for industrial action immediately.
Posted: 6th June 2019