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Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 11:23

How will this affect you? At my mail centre you don't get a break on a 4 hour shift so will lose out financially from a reduced hourly rate. Angard have to make it clear to Royal Mail that we must be given the same breaks as RM staff.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 12:57

We get breaks based on hours worked.

If I work 7 and a half hours or more, I get a 45 minute break given by whoever my line manager is that shift. If I work less than that, I get 30 minutes specified to me by line manager. I've not had less than a 6 hour scheduled shift for months now to remember what the hours-worked minimum is to get 30 minutes break.

At least in my mail centre and on my night shift, the management appear to treat me fairly in regard to break entitlement. :Applause

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 12:58

Unfortunately, I can't see a way around this but you should get a break to match what Royal Mail staff get
In my mail center you should get 20 mins I think for the 4 hours - I know at the moment we get 10 mins but this should change (fingers crossed)

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 13:27

We should get a 20 minute break from the 1st to equal RM staff but up till now because we get paid 4 hours you are expected to work 4 hours. We used to get 15 minutes break but that was dropped a while back and we have always been paid the full 4 hours even when everybody got a break. On longer shifts you are deducted 30 minutes regardless of what breaks you actually get (minimum of one 30 min break), so swings and roundabouts. I'll be insisting on my 20 minute break from the 1st if I'm going to be paid less. Good news though for the people who currently have a break deducted on short shifts.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 18:24

There’s nothing in the email I received that states we will get the same break entitlement as Royal Mail, only that our breaks will be paid. Currently at my mail centre the RM staff get an hour’s paid break for a 7.5hr nightshift, but Angard only get 30 minutes. I can’t see this changing - or will it?

Also, regarding holiday, I’m unsure how to interpret this:

As an agency worker, if you work 12 weeks in a row for Royal Mail (and so meet the qualifying period of service under the Agency Worker Regulations), you are entitled to be paid for holiday over and above the 28 day minimum holiday amount which you receive in the first 12 weeks of an assignment (additional holiday). The actual amount of additional holiday you receive will vary depending on the particular role you are working in. Currently you are paid for additional holiday through an enhancement to your hourly rate. We have received feedback that this method of paying for holiday is leading to confusion and to some agency workers thinking they are not being paid for the holiday they are entitled to. We are therefore removing the enhancement to your hourly rate for additional holiday. Instead, you will be paid for holiday when you take your holiday. This change will come into effect from 1 April 2019.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 18:57

Lockardian wrote:There’s nothing in the email I received that states we will get the same break entitlement as Royal Mail, only that our breaks will be paid. Currently at my mail centre the RM staff get an hour’s paid break for a 7.5hr nightshift, but Angard only get 30 minutes. I can’t see this changing - or will it?

Also, regarding holiday, I’m unsure how to interpret this:

As an agency worker, if you work 12 weeks in a row for Royal Mail (and so meet the qualifying period of service under the Agency Worker Regulations), you are entitled to be paid for holiday over and above the 28 day minimum holiday amount which you receive in the first 12 weeks of an assignment (additional holiday). The actual amount of additional holiday you receive will vary depending on the particular role you are working in. Currently you are paid for additional holiday through an enhancement to your hourly rate. We have received feedback that this method of paying for holiday is leading to confusion and to some agency workers thinking they are not being paid for the holiday they are entitled to. We are therefore removing the enhancement to your hourly rate for additional holiday. Instead, you will be paid for holiday when you take your holiday. This change will come into effect from 1 April 2019.

"We have received feedback that this method of paying for holiday is leading to confusion" !!!
The recent EAT decision as follows;

2nd March 2018
Kocur v Angard Staffing Solutions Ltd

Providing an agency worker with 28 days’ holiday and half-hour rest breaks when comparable permanent employees were entitled to 30.5 days’ holiday and rest breaks of one hour breached the Agency Workers Regulations (AWR).

The Agency Workers Regulations 2010 give two sorts of rights:
Day 1 rights (e.g. same access to collective facilities and amenities) and, more significantly, 12-week rights, i.e. after a 12-week qualifying period the right to the same basic working and employment conditions in relation to certain terms.

Background

Mr Kocur was an agency worker who had worked for the hirer, Royal Mail, long enough to become entitled to 12-week rights and equal treatment with Royal Mail’s permanent staff under AWR, reg. 5. However, he was unhappy with certain aspects of his terms and conditions. In particular, he was given a one-hour break for each eight-hour night shift but was paid for only half an hour, whereas direct recruits were paid for the entire hour; and he was entitled to 28 days’ annual leave compared to direct recruits’ 30.5 days. However, Mr Kocur received highly hourly pay; £10.50 per hour as opposed to a comparable employee’s £9.60 per hour. A tribunal dismissed his claims under reg. 5 in relation to these matters. He appealed.

EAT decision

The EAT allowed his appeal. An agency or hirer cannot offset a failure to confer a specific AWR entitlement with a higher rate of pay. The entitlement is to the same basic terms and conditions as comparable employees on a ‘term-by-term’ basis with equal terms, not by comparing the overall package.

As to Mr Kocur’s leave entitlement, there was a breach of reg. 5. The EAT did not accept the tribunal’s view that Mr Kocur could choose not to work on 2.5 days per year; such an approach lacked transparency and it was difficult to see how it could be enforced. Moreover, the failure to give the additional leave could not be compensated for by Mr Kocur’s enhanced hourly rate of pay.

The EAT noted that the AWR doesn’t specify the way in which an agency worker must receive parity in relation to annual leave.
Thus, if identical holiday pay was provided by a lump sum at assignment end, or in ‘rolled-up’ holiday pay, this would not, in principle, breach reg.5. But, emphasised the EAT, any such arrangements would have to be transparent, and the agency worker would have to be able to ascertain precisely what aspect of his or her remuneration relates to annual leave. In Mr Kocur’s case the payment said to compensate for the 2.5 days’ leave was neither transparent nor readily comprehensible.

As for Mr Kocur’s rest breaks, while there was no disparity in the length of his break (unlike his holiday entitlement), the difference in pay for the rest break (pay for half the time as against pay for all the time) was a breach of reg. 5. The term relating to rest breaks was not the same, and merely having a higher rate of pay cannot compensate this.

Link to judgment: http://www.bailii.org/uk/cases/UKEAT/20 ... _2302.html

Comment
This decision makes it clear that under the AWR less favourable treatment in one respect, for example, providing less annual leave, cannot be offset with more favourable treatment in another respect, for example, by providing a higher hourly rate of pay. This is not new and is in keeping with the judicial approach taken in discrimination and equal pay cases.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 19:27

Lockardian wrote:There’s nothing in the email I received that states we will get the same break entitlement as Royal Mail, only that our breaks will be paid. Currently at my mail centre the RM staff get an hour’s paid break for a 7.5hr nightshift, but Angard only get 30 minutes. I can’t see this changing - or will it?


In my scenario if we don't start getting an official break on the 18.00-22.00 late shift we will effectively be having a pay cut. It's something Angard will have to clarify as it doesn't make sense to pay breaks but still get shorter breaks if they are not going to enhance the hourly rate to compensate for shorter breaks. We are supposed to get equal treatment/pay under AWR.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

27 Mar 2019, 23:02

I agree with you regarding breaks, and I would hope local line managers will be clearly briefed on this. There has been much chopping and changing of break entitlements recently at my MC because the managers don’t seem to be aware of what the entitlement is.

We used to get 40 minutes for a nightshift which was reduced to 30 when a member of RM staff complained that the Angard staff were getting too many breaks (at least that’s the story that’s going around). The Royal Mail guys get a full hour of course.

A complication at our site is that the nightshift does not have a set finish time. The shift is booked as 2230-0500, but in reality Angard staff often stay until 0530, 0600 or occasionally even later, depending on how busy the shift is - effectively it’s 2230 until whenever the manager says you can go - you can’t just up and leave at 0500. If it’s quiet we are sometimes sent home before 0500. So it’s difficult to calculate the break entitlement as nobody knows the actual length of the shift in advance. How should this be handled? Working past 0500 might mean an extra break is due, but it makes little sense from the work-flow perspective to send Angardees off the floor then when it’s the very time they need more hands on deck to clear the mail.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

28 Mar 2019, 19:35

“In the way forward agreement we have commitments of between 5 & 7 hours people get 30 minutes & then between 7 & 8.59 minutes they get 40 minutes breaks. Within the mail centres & RDC’s we’ve built in a relaxation allowance its roughly 13 per cent but it does change depending on the nature of the job...

Contact with HR should confirm this statement.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

28 Mar 2019, 20:06

rogersh wrote:“In the way forward agreement we have commitments of between 5 & 7 hours people get 30 minutes & then between 7 & 8.59 minutes they get 40 minutes breaks. Within the mail centres & RDC’s we’ve built in a relaxation allowance its roughly 13 per cent but it does change depending on the nature of the job...

Contact with HR should confirm this statement.


Does this apply to both Angard AWR and Royal Mail? ATM Royal Mail staff are getting more breaks than this (a full hour for a 7.5hr-8hr shift). Are the additional breaks “discretionary”? It appears RM staff get the discretionary breaks and Angard staff don’t.

Like I said above, because our shift has no fixed end time we appear to be getting the 30 minutes for the 6.5hr shift but no additional break if this becomes a 7hr shift or longer. It wasn’t so much an issue when breaks were unpaid, but now we are effectively getting a pay cut if we don’t get the allocated breaks for the length of shift.

When you say HR will clarify, do you mean Royal Mail HR? As agency staff, we are told to take this up with our contact at Angard.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

28 Mar 2019, 20:56

Lockardian wrote:
rogersh wrote:“In the way forward agreement we have commitments of between 5 & 7 hours people get 30 minutes & then between 7 & 8.59 minutes they get 40 minutes breaks. Within the mail centres & RDC’s we’ve built in a relaxation allowance its roughly 13 per cent but it does change depending on the nature of the job...

Contact with HR should confirm this statement.


Does this apply to both Angard AWR and Royal Mail? ATM Royal Mail staff are getting more breaks than this (a full hour for a 7.5hr-8hr shift). Are the additional breaks “discretionary”? It appears RM staff get the discretionary breaks and Angard staff don’t.

Like I said above, because our shift has no fixed end time we appear to be getting the 30 minutes for the 6.5hr shift but no additional break if this becomes a 7hr shift or longer. It wasn’t so much an issue when breaks were unpaid, but now we are effectively getting a pay cut if we don’t get the allocated breaks for the length of shift.

When you say HR will clarify, do you mean Royal Mail HR? As agency staff, we are told to take this up with our contact at Angard.


I have copy & pasted this from another post on this forum, do not know if you had this letter but it seems to be clear, as is the EAT decision, that AWR qualified should now receive paid breaks. I suggest you follow the advice "If you are unsure what your break entitlement is, please speak to a Royal Mail manager at the site where you are working."
I did mean RM HR - so you could ask your manager to contact HR for confirmation if he or she is not clear on the changes. The shift having no fixed end time is not something I am familiar with so perhaps the question should also be clarified.

Breaks

As an agency worker, if you work 12 weeks in a row for Royal Mail (and so meet the qualifying period of service under the Agency Worker Regulations), you are entitled to be paid for meal breaks. This pay is currently given to you through an enhancement to your hourly rate of pay. Following feedback that this is causing confusion and leading some agency workers to think that they are not being paid for meal breaks, we are removing the meal break enhancement from the hourly rate of pay. Instead, your paid hours will increase to include paid meal break time. This change should make it easier for you to see that you are being paid for the agreed breaks you take during the working day. This change will come into effect from 1 April 2019.

Note that in the first 12 weeks of an assignment there is no entitlement to paid breaks and there will be no change to this.

Meal break entitlements vary according to the particular role you are covering. If you are unsure what your break entitlement is, please speak to a Royal Mail manager at the site where you are working.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

28 Mar 2019, 23:48

I’ve dropped Angard an email to see if they can clarify anything regarding breaks - but not holding my breath.

As for holiday entitlement, does this mean we will accrue more hours than previously? I’m still unsure how to interpret the part of the email regarding this.

I also assume “overtime rates” which previously kicked in after 34hrs40mins will now not apply until more hours have been worked.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

29 Mar 2019, 07:16

rogersh wrote:Providing an agency worker with 28 days’ holiday and half-hour rest breaks when comparable permanent employees were entitled to 30.5 days’ holiday

rogersh wrote:and he was entitled to 28 days’ annual leave compared to direct recruits’ 30.5 days.

Think it's only 22.5 days for a direct employee when they first start, think it's after 10 years service that it goes up so if anything to be equal with a directly employed RM employee he should have less holiday.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

29 Mar 2019, 07:28

30.5 includes the 8 bank holidays, we were only getting 20 days holiday.

Lockardian wrote:I’ve dropped Angard an email to see if they can clarify anything regarding breaks - but not holding my breath.

As for holiday entitlement, does this mean we will accrue more hours than previously? I’m still unsure how to interpret the part of the email regarding this.

I also assume “overtime rates” which previously kicked in after 34hrs40mins will now not apply until more hours have been worked.


My initial reply from Angard is that I should sort out any problems myself with RM managers. I've told them if they want me to do this I need the official instructions given by RM regarding breaks from the 1st. If I do get any arguments at the mail centre over breaks I'll remind Angard I work for them not RM and it's up to them to sort it out.
The holiday percentage should go up from 12.07 to 13.28% if my maths is right.

Paid breaks from 1/4/2019

29 Mar 2019, 07:50

tabact wrote:30.5 includes the 8 bank holidays, we were only getting 20 days holiday.

.

tabact - You are correct - 8 bank holidays are included (added to 20) in the 28 days to make up the statutory minimum holiday entitlement.

RM workers receive an extra 2.5 days (half week) above the statutory minimum = 30.5 in total (graduating with service)
Last edited by rogersh on 30 Mar 2019, 07:33, edited 1 time in total.

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