Our fight to end low pay

There is definitely a mood in the air here in Barnet.

 I can’t put my finger on it but it is there.

 In the last few weeks our reps have been going into workplaces and recruiting both members and reps in services where staff have been working throughout COVID, services such as care homes, waste and recycling, street cleansing, housing repairs and gas services, parking enforcement and passenger transport to name but a few.

One of the major issues is that they are all low paid workers and they quite rightly feel they are not being paid enough, especially when you consider they have worked on throughout all the restraints caused by the virus.

For the past six months these workers have been directed into the COVID workplace by senior managers all working from the comfort of their homes.

Being able to work from is not an option for these workers.

While senior management are saving money on transport costs because they can work from home these workers are paying the rising costs of public transport to get to their workplaces.

 Today was no exception. We met a group of workers in the Repairs and Gas Service who had recently TUPED into the Barnet Group from Mears. There were many serious issues raised, all of which can and must be dealt with by our union.

 What was great about the meeting was that this previously un-unionised workforce quickly grasped the importance of union membership in the workplace. Not only have they already begun to recruit the whole of the service, they have understood the need to have local reps and we recruited two union reps and one Health and Safety rep.

I never get tired of working with members and today reminded me of what we can do if we have the confidence and support of the workforce.

Today is but the beginning I sense things are going to get interesting here in Barnet over the next six to nine months.


John Burgess

Branch Secretary, Barnet UNISON.

Pay Rise for Some – NOT for others? Must be The Barnet Group

UNISON been informed that if you are a Barnet Homes Contracted member of staff that you should receive the 2.75% nationally agreed pay rise in your October pay – this will be backdated to April 2020.

If you are a TBG Flex Contracted member of staff working in Barnet Homes – the pay rise your Barnet Homes colleagues receive as part of their Nationally agreed Pay and Terms and Conditions, will be brought to the TBG Flex Board for hopeful approval the next time it sits – IF AGREED by the Board you will receive the 2.75% increase, which should be back dated to April – As yet UNISON has not been notified as to when the TBG Flex Board will meet to make this decision.

If you are a TBG Flex member of staff working for Your Choice Barnet – The Barnet Group have informed UNISON that you will NOT receive any Pay Rise.

If you are a Your Choice Barnet contracted member of Staff – The Barnet Group have informed UNISON that you will NOT receive any Pay Rise.

If you are a Your Choice Care [ex Fremantle] contracted member of staff – The Barnet Group have informed UNISON that you will NOT receive any Pay Rise.

UNISON is waiting for The Barnet Group to advise UNISON on whether staff in Your Choice Care will receive the London Living Wage as a minimum.

This highlights the shocking discrepancies in Pay and Terms and Conditions in the Barnet Group – WE ALL ultimately work for the London Borough of Barnet – WE SHOULD ALL be on Nationally Agreed Pay and Terms and Conditions with access to the Local Government Pension Scheme and a standard 36hr week.

Please, please, talk to your colleagues about the Pay inequality in The Barnet Group and get them to join Barnet UNISON –



Repairs Consultation in the Barnet Group to begin 7th of September

The Repairs Consultation will start on Monday 7th of September.

I will be at the Grahame Park Housing Office on Monday from 9am to offer you support.

I have scheduled a zoom meeting at 3pm for any members effected by the proposals – the details to join are below – Time off for members effected by the proposals to attend has been agreed.

Topic: Barnet Homes repairs
Time: Sep 7, 2020 03:00 PM London

Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 828 8942 0737
Passcode: 605905

When is a Council Worker not a Council Worker?

When is a Council Worker not a Council Worker?

The Barnet Group is a Local Authority Trading Company [LATC] fully owned and funded by the London Borough of Barnet to provide Housing and Care Services on behalf of Barnet Council to Barnet Residents.

Barnet Homes Contracted staff [pre 2016] – Have nationally agreed Terms and Conditions and access to the Local Government Pension Scheme.

Your Choice Barnet [YCB] Contracted staff – were forcibly opted out of nationally agreed pay which included a 9% cut to their wages.

YCC – Your Choice Care – consists of staff [many of them originally LBB employees] TUPE into the Barnet Group are not even paid the London Living Wage.

TBG FLEX –  an employment company within the Barnet Group – Was initiated in 2016 to drive down T&Cs for new starters working for Barnet Homes and Your Choice Barnet.

It has been a success!!!


TBG Flex employees have:

No access to the Local Government Pension Scheme. [But do have access to a much inferior pension scheme….Thanks!]

Work longer hours that their colleagues in Barnet Homes or LBB.

Are paid less than colleagues in Barnet Homes or LBB.

Have less Annual Leave than colleagues in Barnet Homes or LBB.

Have no continuation of service should they wish to work for another Local Authority.

YCB workers and TBG Flex contracted workers in YCB or YCC have the added bonus that they do not even get the cost of living yearly increase which TBG Flex contracted staff receive in Barnet Homes.

So when is a Council Worker not a Council worker?

When they work in the Barnet Group in YCB or YCC or have a TBG Flex Contract 


Help us to stamp out the inequality in the Barnet Group 

Join us in campaigning for all Barnet Group staff to have access to the Local Government Pension Scheme, have the same pay and grading, sick pay, annual Leave and Terms and Conditions as our colleagues in Barnet Homes.



“IMPORTANT Update: Guidance and template letter for vulnerable employees (England)”

28 May 2020.

Please read the latest guidance provided by UNISON

This guidance covers:

1 Clinically extremely vulnerable employees (people at high risk)

2 Clinically vulnerable employees (people at moderate risk)

3 Employees living with / caring for the vulnerable or extremely vulnerable

4 Black employees

5 Older employees (over 60)

6 Employees who have childcare responsibilities

7 Employees who are feeling anxious about returning to work

8 Template letter to head teacher

Click on the link to read the guidance


If you need any help with this advice please contact the branch office at contactus@barnetunison.org.uk




Barnet Homes UNISON Zoom meeting

Please join the first Barnet Homes UNISON Zoom meeting

Thursday the 28th of May 1pm.

We will be discussing the latest proposals in regard to the restructure of housing services.

Join Zoom Meeting



Meeting ID: 871 3273 4583

Password: 139984

One tap mobile

+13462487799,,87132734583#,,1#,139984# US (Houston)

+16465588656,,87132734583#,,1#,139984# US (New York)

“COVID-19: How to make your workplace safe” Zoom meeting

Barnet UNISON as part of our Know Your Rights at Work campaign are hosting a

ZOOM meeting with NEU and GMB entitled:

“COVID-19: How to make your workplace safe”

Wednesday 27 May 6pm

Guest Speaker: Janet Newsham, Chair Hazards Campaign, sitting member of Employment Tribunal for past 25 years.


Meeting ID: 826 4021 4991

Password: 363400


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