Article by Samantha Pope from Weston Mercury Website
MORALE will ‘plummet’ when pay changes are brought in according to staff at a North Somerset Council call centre.
GMB and Unison unions have warned against the impact of the proposal to withdraw pay bonuses for working unsocial hours at the Care Connect facility.
The unions have suggested the £100-a-month pay cut for the workers will impact on services.
The call centre is run by an external company, Agilisys, which is looking to renew its £100million contract with the council to deliver a number of services formerly handled in-house.
The call centre staff deal with phone calls from the elderly or disabled via the Carelink system.
Carelink is installed in homes so vulnerable people can raise the alarm after a fall or accident.
Unison’s Helen Thornton said: “These staff are already low-paid, mainly female staff, who in many cases have a variety of caring responsibilities themselves.
“Agilisys want to cut their pay because to win the council contract they promised a level of savings, which were undeliverable.
“Already low staff morale will plummet further, and will impact on service delivery as highly experienced staff will leave to take jobs in organisations which value them.”
Rowena Hayward, of the GMB, said: “North Somerset Council has a responsibility to ensure that its contractors demonstrate a duty of care to their workers which this company is failing to do and the council rewards them by giving them more services to provide.
“The combined cuts which staff are being asked to bear amount to £40,000 in total. This is small change to this cash-rich company, although significant to the individuals working for them.”