The new organisation is likely to be either a Social Enterprise or an NHS Foundation Trust. This means that your service will be opened up to privatisation.
When you are transferred to a new organisation or company your terms and conditions transfer with you through something called a TUPE transfer. BUT TUPE does not protect you forever – it could last 5 minutes before the new employer consults with you to change your terms and conditions.
Pensions are not part of TUPE, although currently there is separate legislation requiring the new organisation to continue your Local Government or NHS pension, or to provide you with a broadly comparable pension.
Because the new organisation will be a merger between Health and Local Government it is highly likely that the new employer will want to "harmonise" terms and conditions so that all staff are on the same terms and conditions. Generally when employers do this staff terms and conditions deteriorate.
In addition, because the new organisation will be a merger between Health and Local Government it is also likely that there will be duplication of jobs, and therefore there may be redundancies.
Finally, if a new integrated care organisation comes into being in North Somerset it will be the biggest privatisation of public services undertaken in the area.
UNISON opposes the privatisation of public services because it generally means a deterioration of terms and conditions for members, and poorer quality services for local people. It is also unethical that private companies can make profits out of public services, funded by tax-payers’ money.
WHAT CAN I DO TO INFLUENCE THE PROCESS AND TO STOP THIS HAPPENING?
You need to make sure that you nominate a UNISON rep or contact for your team so that we have good communication throughout the process.
You need to attend the meetings listed below, and future meetings, which will be arranged. You also need to encourage any of your colleagues who aren’t UNISON members to join.
As Health and Social Care professionals you need to tell your employer what you think will be the impact on the service you provide.
You need to take part in the council’s consultation with staff and residents at http://consult.n-somerset.gov.uk/consult.ti/ICO2012/consultationHome, and you need to encourage your friends and family to give their views. The consultation ends on 31st July 2012.
The Integrated Care Organisation cannot run without staff, so if you are all prepared to stand together against this, then we can stop it.
As a result we will be balloting you on whether or not you are prepared to take some form of industrial action to stop this. And we will also be asking you to demonstrate at North Somerset Council meetings, Board meetings at Weston Area Health Trust, NHS North Somerset and the Strategic Health Authority.
29 May in First Floor room 2 at Badger House at 12.30
7 June in the Kenn Room at the Town Hall at 12.30
14 June in the Waverley room in the Academy at Weston General Hospital at 12.30
26 June at at 12.30 Castlewood rom 2.07
28 June at 12.30 at Badger House FF Rm 2
3 July at 12.30 at the Town Hall New Council Chamber
11 July at 12.30 at Weston Hospital – Academy, Syndicate C
25 July at 1.15 pm at Castlewood, G9/10
31 July at 12.30 at Badger House FF Rm2
7 August at 12.30 at the Town Hall New Council Chamber
14 August at 12.30 at Weston Hospital – Academy, Waverley room
21 August at 12.30 at Castlewood Rooms G8.G9.G10
29 August at 12.30 at Badger House FF Rm 2