I feel that it’s important to write to you as the representative union of the vast majority of Tayside Contracts kitchen staff. We represent almost a thousand across Tayside in facilities services.
It is a surprise for us to learn that the report is going to the Tayside committees with such short notice, and I apologise for how late in the day this letter is.
However, having reviewed the equality impact assessment its disappointing to see that there appears to be no impact attributed to sex, which is a surprise, considering the vast majority of those who work in kitchens are low paid women with part time contracts. In addition, it appears that all of the other impacts are either unkown, or no impact. It is really disappointing that such a poor impact assessment has been delivered for what is a significant change, particularly for those on lower incomes across the city whose children receive free school meals.
Now, whilst it appears that a further 32 posts may be created at a centralised production unit, you must be aware that the part time posts that are currently filled are, as a result of need, particularly for carers. It is inevitable that rural posts will go across Tayside as a result of the centralisation, which will have economic impacts in those areas, as well as on a largely predominantly female part time low paid workforce.
In addition, there has been no collective bargaining over this with Tayside Contracts and indeed, an email was sent after an article had been published locally. I am aware that NHS Tayside and other councils have also been in contact with Tayside Contracts which will further impact on jobs in other councils and in the NHS.
There has been no consultation with parents. I also fail to understand how the impact assessment concludes that there will be no environmental impact when you consider the increase in traffic that this will create.
I would ask that you reflect on the points that I have raised on behalf of GMB members across Tayside, and whether some reflection is required before agreement is made to progress at such short notice. It would also give an opportunity for appropriate consultation with the recognised trade unions, and for us to properly consult with our members.
Posted: 31st January 2019