Friday, 9 December 2016

Latest From Napo 128

TO: All Napo NPS members (by mail out)
CC: Napo CRC members (for information)
Branch Chairs, Vice-Chairs, Secretaries and Convenors
National Executive Committee
Family Court SEC (for information)
Napo Officers and Staff

Dear Member,

E3 Job Evaluation Appeal Results – Enforcement Officer

Napo Officers and Officials share the disappointment that members will have about the outcome of the Job Evaluation Appeal panel for the Enforcement Officer role (Band 3)

The process

In order to avoid any confusion it may help to be explicit about the process used for the appeals. As is the case for all the job evaluation outcomes, the new job roles are part of the changes being brought in by E3 and anyone currently being paid at a higher band will be covered by the protections agreed in the E3 implementation Agreement which we secured before the process began.

This was not the familiar individual process of job evaluation appeal as we are in a national process of organisational change. The Unions prepared collective appeals to be re-evaluated. For Napo, Katie Lomas (National Vice-Chair) worked with specialist practitioner Napo members to prepare appeals. We then met with the Employers to go through a process of discussion for each of the roles and had an opportunity to amend our appeal documents based on the discussions.

It is useful at this point to note that this is not an individual process where the employee's account of what their role is or will be in the future is automatically accepted. This is an employer owned process and under the scheme rules it is for the employer to dictate which duties and responsibilities they want to include in a new job description. This means that if they want a job to have a lower grade, they can remove duties and responsibilities from the role. We of course sought to challenge this during the appeal process where we and the practitioners that attended the discussions with us, worked very hard to ensure that we challenged each area where duties and responsibilities were, in the opinion of our members, missing; however it is the employers’ prerogative to remove these.

This work was done in conjunction with practicing members and took into account the wealth of information and the considerable amount of time that members had contributed in their work alongside Katie.

Where do we go from here?

Napo will work with all of our members involved to ensure that no one is expected to carry out any duties and responsibilities that have now been removed from the job description in order to achieve the new E3 specific grading. We will liaise with members impacted by the new grading to ensure that the E3 agreement is adhered to and that where applicable, members currently graded above the appeal outcomes are offered support to seek alternative roles at the appropriate grade during the three years of pay protection.

We will also work with members to ensure that we continue to raise the issues you have highlighted around new operating models and concerns about service delivery and the public safety considerations. We will of course need ongoing input from members to do this effectively, feeding back to branches, officers and officials.

Napo will work with all members involved to review the situation after 6 months of working to the new E3 job descriptions so that if, in practice, there are elements of the role that were not included in the job evaluation appeal we will apply for a re-evaluation as per the NNC policy.

We fully appreciate that this news will not be well received by our members. Be assured that Napo has done all it can to try and secure a different outcome and we have received personal testimony from members who worked with us closely during this exercise to confirm this position.

Napo will continue to challenge the operational rationale for the E3 programme and feedback through Napo branches, about its impact on members is encouraged.

Yours sincerely

National Co-Chairs    
KATIE LOMAS  National Vice-Chair      
IAN LAWRENCE General Secretary                    


  1. I have been involved in JE. It has always been a fix, a process easily manipulated by the employer to configure hierarchies and cut the cake unfairly. Anyway, band 3 seems appropriate as the narrow work demands are not on a par with the wider, higher qualified PO role.

    1. Reads like you are part of the problem. Taking part in a fix ? In the notice I would like to know who are all these so called job experts losing my terms and conditions in secret . We read Ms Lomas is part of that but how were these people selected by whom were they selected and at what legitimate union event were these people selected from. Another fix then can we ask ?

    2. No, I was not complicit. I became aware it was a fix, I fought against, I was subject to a grievance for my efforts to expose it as a sham. It does not matter how the union side are selected. The point is the employers load the dice as they see fit: by adjusting 'roles and responsibilities'. And if they get an outcome they don't like, they tweak the job demands to get a desirable score.

    3. Well what area is this despicable management operating and yes it does matter the team . A well trained and able trade union panellist who has done the necessary work and understands the process can argue properly on the scores outcomes . These are defined in both the notes and the first draft guidance . The scores based on the evidenced properly checked and argued can easily be determined. The roles and JDQs are all to be prepared an agreed before evaluation so any tweaking is just improper and these usually have some input from members in the posts. Sounds to me like all this shower you may not have managed the process properly. Subjecting you to a grievance is just some plain and simple bullying as that would be the wrong policy to use in the situation you describe. Reads like a defective area all sides.

    4. Just want to remind people job evaluation happened in Trusts and before that NPS. Any TU activist can put themselves forward if selected they are trained in Job Evaluation. All Branch TUs are working on the coal face so have very good insight into demands of job. When I qualified I had to do court duty which included prosecution of breaches was integral aspect of being a PO.

  2. However the higher band on a par with appropriate salary for legally qualified staff. How many POs would be comfortable with prosecuting a contested breach.

    1. For years there have been variations in pay for VLOs and other PSO roles. I don't recall Napo agitating to correct this unfairness. As for the uncontested breach question, it's a competence well within the range of PO with a little practice.

    2. Can't see I would have any problem prosecuting s contested breach the ones I've been involved in have been a lot less complex that some of the other work I have to do

    3. Once upon a time in a land before trusts there was a probation service (or two, or three, or more) which had a discrete breach team attached to the magistrates' and Crown courts teams. The team consisted of a PO, a PSO & a dedicated administrator with fixed-fee access to a lawyer for contested matters and to a barrister for Crown matters (some areas had a single higher advocate). All breaches were filtered through this team, tested by the team and prosecuted by the team - either directly in uncontested cases or via the relevant advocate. I can't remember a single inappropriate breach matter being prosecuted over a protracted period because breaches went through this rigorous gatekeeping process. There was no cherry-picking, no shying away from complexity or challenge; just good ole professional standards rigorously applied by intelligent, experienced, committed staff. Revoke & resentence involved liaison with CPS who, quite properly, re-presented the original matters on behalf of the Crown after, as necessary, discussing with Victim Liaison.

      It was, I was assured, very challenging, complex & engaging work.

      But as with all of that old fashioned stuff it got assigned to the "boring old bastards" bin and a slick new approach was adopted.

      That'll be why its a Band 3 cheap-as-chips DIY task that everyone thinks they can do spinning on their hot-desk chair.

  3. Delius down two days coincides with inspectorate visits. Silence from Napo. Just another day in probation

    1. It adds to the fun of working in a paperless office where we are not allowed any client files

    2. so paperless in our CRC office that i was resigned to writing on green paper towels last week.

  4. Delius and lotus notes down today. Had a great day doing proper work instead. Extra long interviews and phone calls and even popped in to the local homeless shelter to thank them for all their support with our homeless service users. Just like the old days!


    1. Guardian article really powerful. Thank you.

  6. Just one failure on top of another. How many pathetic apologies can the general secretary make. At least he has stopped spouting the 'not on my watch' rubbish. He is a useless, expensive burden being carried by the exhausted dwindling membership followed and adored by the lazy silent chairs and inexperienced impressionable vice chair, with far too much ambition and not enough ability. It would be nice to hear of any victory that this bunch of deluded amateurs could offer to its members.

  7. To 21:04 There are 5 Napo vice chairs,one representing the Family Court staff(apologies but name escapes me) then Chas Berry,Chris Pearson,Katie Lomas and Tina Williams for Probation. Between them all there are years of experience. What would help is Napo centrally communicated more as to what they all do. Limited feedback frustrates members and facilitates misconceptions.