‘We’ve got your back’ CWU pledge to members after TUPE shock  



Union calls emergency meeting of ALL members in BT Supply Chain for tomorrow (Thursday) evening after announcement of outsourcing to logistics giant GXO

“You’re still CWU members, and you take that into GXO with you, along with all your existing terms and conditions,” was the defiant message from CWU deputy general secretary Andy Kerr this morning, as BT confirmed its decision to transfer the employment of 288 drivers and warehouse workers.

From 6am this morning, groups of workers at the two largest affected sites – Magna Park in Lutterworth, Leicestershire and Northallerton, North Yorkshire – were called to briefings by managers and formally told the news, with follow-up one-to-one meetings scheduled to inform individuals about their roles in the ‘retained’ or ‘outsourced’ company.

“According to what we’ve been told, there are 288 Supply Chain staff being outsourced and 322 remaining employed within BT Group,” said CWU national officer Tracey Fussey, explaining that those whom the company will continue to directly employ are the supply chain workers in Engineering Services – comprising all activities directly related to Final Mile/FSL services.

“As regards our outsourced members, the Transfer of Undertakings and Protection of Employment (TUPE) law will apply in full. We will shortly commence discussions around the transferring contractual and non-contractual terms as part of the formal consultation. We’ve already met with GXO senior management and discussed our outstanding grading and pay issues which we’ve been in talks with BT about. We have also confirmed that we will be seeking full CWU recognition for our members who are transferring”.

“We’re strongly opposed to the decision to outsource the work to a third party and have further made it clear that we will be seeking an agreement regarding job security in our ongoing discussions.  What I can assure members is that we will give our full and ongoing support to our members transferring to GXO,” she pointed out.

Andy Kerr said that he was also “extremely disappointed” that BT had chosen this course of action and that “we’re pushing hard for any future proposals to include this union at a much earlier stage, to give us the full opportunity to put together an alternative, in-house proposal.

“In-house is the preferred option of the CWU, but in the circumstances, we’ve effectively been presented with virtually a ‘fait accompli’ and the best we can do is to fight for our members’ rights going forward.”

“We can and we will push GXO hard to ensure the statutory TUPE laws are fully adhered to and Tracey and the national team will continue making the case for ongoing full CWU recognition for our members working for the new company.

“To those members I say, you are all still CWU members and you take this with you, along with all your existing terms and conditions. We will continue to fight for you.”

Branch secretaries have been asked to contact their Supply Chain members with advice, assistance and support and the union is also organising a full members’ meeting, online, tomorrow (Thursday) at 6.30pm.

“If you are a Supply Chain member, then please join this meeting,” urges Tracey. “Full details and the appropriate links will be sent out today. It will be a good opportunity for each of you to ask questions and take advice form me and from our national representatives.

“We recognise that this is a very difficult and worrying situation, but we’re absolutely determined to fight for you as hard as we can through ongoing negotiations.”

  • If you are a BT Supply Chain member, check your inbox for details of the meeting, which will take place at 6.30pm tomorrow.