POA Circulars

80 | 06.08.2019

MEMBERSHIP UPDATE AUGUST 2019 PAVA ROLL OUT/ SPEAR/ RIGID BAR CUFFS

Due to the overwhelming support from the membership during the indicative ballot there are now 14 sites which have been identified as the initial sites to receive PAVA. They include:
Liverpool, Brixton, Brinsford, Stoke Heath, Erlestoke, Moorland, Cardiff, Wakefield, Frankland, Usk, Huntercombe, Warren Hill, Whatton and Haverigg.

Local committees at these branches should approach their SMT and receive a dedicated timetable for the roll out of PAVA at their establishments. If there are any issues, please contact your NEC Representative.

Any local C&R Instructors at any prison who have been trained in PAVA, Cuffs and SPEAR should liaise with their local POA committee and SMT, in order to ascertain when PAVA will be rolled out at their establishment. Please ensure you NEC Representative is kept updated.

We continue to press for the female estate, juvenile estate, open estate and private prisons to be issued with PAVA and will continue to monitor the levels of violence in Secure Hospitals.

Your health and safety is non negotiable and we will use whatever legal remedies available to protect you in the workplace.


RMP

Every prison should have in place an agreed RMP. If you do not have an agreed RMP in place, you should ensure at the very least that you have profiled alarm bell responses prior to unlocking ANY prisoners. If you need advice, please contact your area NEC Representative. It is unsafe to unlock prisoners without profiled alarm bell responses being confirmed as on duty and at their work area.


PARLIAMENTARY DROP IN

The Parliamentary session held on Wednesday 10th July 2019, in the House of Commons was a huge success and I would like to thank all POA members who participated. Feedback from the Politicians who attended has been very positive and we have much support in reducing levels of violence, rolling out PAVA, increasing staffing levels and reducing our retirement age.
The issues highlighted by members at this event will be taken forward, especially the problems surrounding the lack of support from SMTs when staff have been assaulted.
Please invite your local MP into your establishment so they may see for themselves the working conditions you are subject to.

DISPUTES RESOLUTION PROCEDURE

On 1st August 2019, the POA entered negotiations about forming a new local disputes resolution procedure to replace PSO 8525. Negotiations continue.

ADVANCED PRISON OFFICER

The employer has indicated that they wish to negotiate details surrounding an Advanced Prison Officer Role. Negotiations are scheduled to commence soon. The membership will be updated once details emerge.

OMiC IN THE FEMALE/ OPEN ESTATE

Agreement could not be reached. Local committees are instructed to submit disputes if their SMT attempt to impose any OMiC model. Please refer to POA circular 49/2019.

PAY AWARD

The recommendations from the Pay Review Body have been accepted in their entirety by the Government and include closed grades receiving a 2.2% consolidated award whilst those on F&S will receive a 3% consolidated award. As per the recent change to Conference Policy we will not be balloting the membership to accept or reject this award. This is yet another insulting award for POA members who have suffered years of pay freezes. We will continue to press the Government to allow the POA to enter collective bargaining pay negotiations and to scrap the Pay Review Body.

The award is backdated to 1st April 2019 and should be included in Augusts pay.

 

RETIREMENT AGE

We await the final remedy (award for those affected) from the Fire Brigades Union successful tribunal claim for age discrimination before we launch our own legal challenge which has been lodged for some time.

Several meetings have taken place between the POA and various other Unions within the TUC. All the Unions affected by this Judgement have asked the Government to clarify the following:

HM Treasury will seek to negotiate a remedy with litigants to rectify unlawful age discrimination at no detriment to existing scheme members or accrued benefits.

There will be no attempt to implement wider reform to public sector schemes, with a continued adherence to the principles of the 25 year guarantee and the requirements to negotiate on any changes to protected elements within this period, as set out in Section 22 of the Public Service Pensions Act 2013.

The Government's preferred approach may include a core remedy that will be implemented to all schemes with some amendments made in line with the requirements of specific schemes. Remedies could include changes to the Normal Pension Age.

Thank you for your continued support.
For and on behalf of the NEC.

 

MARK FAIRHURST
National Chair