Many of you will have received a letter from Cordia last week telling you that they had reached agreement to make a back dated payment of 8.3 % for holiday pay for 2017 only. I promised to check this with the unions and the council.
First NO AGREEMENT WAS REACHED WITH THE UNIONS and they are annoyed that this has been misrepresented (although might have helped if they made this clear sooner). This is still important because sometimes employers argue agreements even in industrial meetings can bind staff. There is no suggestion at the moment that this payment is extended to in any way compromise your claims. We are seeking confirmation.
Second neither the union or GCC thought about the knock on affects on the equal pay claims. We complained about this and they both accepted they needed to do better. I understand that there are a lot of industrial meetings all the time but not looking at the bigger picture is one of the reasons we are where we are today. We will be amending the terms of reference to reflect this problem.
Third holiday pay law is a massive area of litigation at the moment and there are a number of overlaps between the right to holiday pay and equal pay. There are also differences between EU law on holiday pay and UK law. Eu law is better, mostly.
So we have to consider Uk law, eu law and how they compare, and on top of that how cordia treated you compared to how GCC or the other ALEOS treated the men.
So here we go: under Uk you were only entitled to holiday pay if it was contractual. The EU then gave everyone a minimum of weeks entitlement to holiday and for it to be paid. This led to confusion over bank holidays, whether the 4 weeks, did or did not include them. To clear this up the Uk decided to extend the entitlement to include all BHs so extended the entitlement to 5.6 weeks. Just to add to the complications the councils holiday entitlement is a minimum of 6 weeks and a maximum of 7 weeks. The base line of 4 weeks is often called “euro leave”. But whether EU law only covers 4 weeks or 5.6 weeks or the contractual leave is hotly disputed. So is how that pay is to be calculated. Uk law was that only guaranteed pay had to be included. EU law now says that this is wrong and it should be “normal” pay. There is also a dispute as to how far back your EU rights go.
And there’s more. The mens’ entitlement is also enhanced by at least 3 other parts of the pay package namely guaranteed contractual overtime, Nswp (also itself enhanced] and overtime rate.
On top of that there is voluntary overtime. The council changed its position on this for non cordia staff in 2015. From then additional voluntary overtime started to be included in holiday pay. BUT it’s not clear for what period nor how it was calculated.
Unfortunately deconstruction of all of this is not easy because tax year and holiday years don’t match and for all guaranteed payment they don’t show holiday pay at all in the pay data.
As you can guess, there are huge numbers of permutations, none of which have been considered by the council or Cordia.
But a man with 10 yrs service working 42 hours a week including 40 hours guaranteed would get 35 hour core pay full wcd, max Nswp and time and half for 7 hours. Up until 2015 on holiday he would paid for all 7 weeks core pay,his wcd,his Nswp and time and half for 5 hours. We don’t think the extra 2 hours would be included. From 2015 this was increased by adding the extra 2 hours but we don’t know if this was for all 7 weeks of holiday.
For a woman in cordia on same grade and same service working say 32 hours contracted and 10 hours regular (but not contractual ) overtime - so exactly same hours. She would get wcd but only on core hours, less Nswp and only basic for 3 hours and time half for 7 hours until 2016 when she lost all enhancements (but he didn’t). Her holiday would be just for 32 hours and her lower wcd and Nswp. None of the overtime was included at all. So she was getting less than him when working and a lot less when on holiday!
What Cordia are proposing is that only from 2017 only she gets 8.3 % extra on those 10 hours which is equivalent to paying those 10 hours for 4 of the 7 weeks. No backdating of even that little bit for 2015 or 2016 which everyone outside Cordia has been getting. Nothing for any other elements of pay.
The council say this is generous as you don’t have any holiday pay claims.
My response is unrepeatable!
But the payment by the council is unilateral so you don’t need to do anything. However keep any records of overtime and the pay slip for April which shows the payment.
Hopefully the unions will send similar advice to their members. In the meantime we will be discussing this with the council hopefully on 20th.

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