Here we have the latest Newsletter sent to London Napo members and a very different style to those of the previous Chair, Pat Waterman:-
TO: NAPO MEMBERS
MTC & UNIONS CONTINUE TO BUILD TRUST AROUND 2020 VISION
November’s Joint Negotiating Committee meeting between the CRC owner and the unions was again positive and open – the unions being encouraged by MTC’s honest assessment of their challenges and also their willingness to draw from our local and professional knowledge and expertise. An example of this is how we are working closely with them around office closures – the unions recognising that some offices are not fit for purpose whilst passing on important local intelligence and discussing creatively options for alternatives. Members with particular with particular concerns around office moves are encouraged to share these with Napo. The unions were also invited to meet their design consultants planning office layouts where we will pass on lessons from other CRC’s who haven’t got this right.
MTC also updated us on reforms to delivery to support their emerging Vision 2020. Napo welcomed recognition that the cohort model had led to hugely variable caseloads and welcome moves to geographically based teams with consistent and manageable workloads. We specifically raised concerns about line management capacity if Band 5’s are expected to have full day-to-day line management responsibility for up to 15 staff – impossible to do well if that includes all appraisals and performance management with other professional aspects of the role. Napo will continue to press for more resources and numbers in the first frontline manager roles across probation.
E3 JOB EVALUATION OUTCOMES
After meeting staff involved and representing concerns to NPS senior management a clearer, fairer and more inclusive process for assessing the anomaly of AP Deputy Managers and the E3 model was negotiated and agreed. AP Deputy Mangers were obviously concerned that their roles had previously been job evaluated at band 5 but their role didn’t feature in the E3 template and so they were potentially at risk of being downgraded and prevented from being considered for the Band 5 roles in the new structure.
However, after the negotiations, a job matching process was agreed and the roles were matched to Band 5, confirming the integrity of the original job evaluations. This still leaves a concern around potentially accommodating more staff into AP manager roles than there are currently jobs and Napo will continue to monitor this and support members, including AP Managers, impacted.
This example highlights how important it is that Napo won the no-redundancy agreement and three year pay protection for staff impacted by E3 – without this, such situations would have been even more complex and threatening for members.
PAY UPDATE INCLUDING APPLICATION OF 2015 – 16 AWARD STILL NOT PAID
Since June Napo have been involved in regular discussions with NPS officials about potential pay reform. These talks are progressing positively but are reaching a point where potential structures will need to be modelled and costed. Members are encouraged to attend local meetings and look out for Napo briefings over the coming weeks for more details.
In the meantime, we anticipate all employers seeking to pay the contractual incremental step for all staff not at their pay band maxima in the coming weeks. Following a national meeting this week, we agree not to object to these payments being made but will monitor their application closely. We are aware that many who left the service or retired during the last award period have not yet been paid their contractual pro-rata entitlements, or had pension payments adjusted accordingly. It is of great concern to us that the NPS and SSCL have struggled to process payments properly or advise CRC’s on their obligations under the terms of the award.
Napo are continuing to log and raise ICT problems, both locally and at national level. We are especially concerned about the impact for Assisted Technology users of problems, as well as the impact on all staff of periods when much of the system doesn’t work.
Napo’s view is that the whole current ICT structure for probation is inadequate and dangerous. These reservations are reflected in the recent critical HMIP inspectorates report. We are concerned that CRC’s are seeking to develop improved working models, but that these have to be integrated into ancient systems. These concerns are being raised nationally, including with Ministers.
PRISON REFORM WHITE PAPER
Napo has been scrutinising the Prison Reform White Paper published last week in the immediate wake of the on-going prison crisis. There is evident concern that the scale of the prison crisis will see a panicked reaction with additional resources being made available but then wasted on panicked, short term measures. The direction of travel was already for more probation staff to be working with offenders in custody, giving rise to challenging management and delivery issues that could (especially in an overstretched service with staff shortages already) have further complicated ramifications for all parts of probation. It is critical that probation has a strong, professional voice at all levels of the conversation and Napo welcomes any members’ input via firstname.lastname@example.org
NAPO AGM & MOVING FORWARD
London Branch would like to thank all members who made it to Cardiff for the AGM at the end of September. It was a successful event with many members leaving more optimistic about our future as a service and as a union. As ever there were some outstanding professional sessions and debates. There is still plenty of opportunity for members to get more involved in Napo in London – all volunteers are welcome and if you have something to give we’ll try to make sure we can find a way to make the best use of whatever time, skills and support you can offer. We’re also looking to maintain our reputation as the most social of Napo branches, starting with our forthcoming QUIZ night on 30th November. If you are interested in taking part please email. Alternatively, call the London Branch office XXXXXXXXXXX as from the 21st November.
PLEASE SHARE THIS NOTE WITH COLLEAGUES WHO MAY NOT BE MEMBERS OF NAPO.
Remember you can get cheaper subs by paying directly through Direct Debit and can also access our extensive new Napo members’ Benefits Package and save the cost of membership in full.
DEAN ROGERS (Assistant General Secretary)
PATRICIA JOHNSON (NPS Co Chair)
DAVID RAHO (CRC Co-Chair)
TERRY WILSON (NPS Vice Chair)