…in brief

This week’s news in brief

WTD consultation

The DTI has taken the first steps to extend the Working Time Directive to
more than 770,000 employees in previously excluded sectors. A public
consultation on the draft provisions will run for 12 weeks, with responses required
by the end of January.  www.dti.gov.uk

Pay offer accepted

Police support staff have won an increased pay offer after intervention by
the Transport and General Workers Union. The Police Authorities and the Association
of Chief Police Officers have increased a pay offer to 3.4 per cent – up from 3
per cent. The offer, which will now be subject to consultation with the
thousands of support staff across the country, is to be supplemented by a joint
working party which will examine a range of HR issues.  www.tgwu.org.uk

CSR campaign

The TUC has launched a campaign to make global firms more accountable for
work-related deaths. The union claims that around the world, the number of
people killed at work outnumbers those killed in wars or by AIDS, and wants to
make firms more responsible.  www.tuc.org.uk

Tesco buys T&S chain

Supermarket giant Tesco has further cemented its dominance of the sector by
buying a leading independent retail chain. Tesco has bought T&S Stores, the
UK’s second-largest independent chain, for about £377m. The deal covers 850
convenience stores, but Tesco said more than half will be converted to its
Express format.  www.tesco.co.uk

Investment returns

UK graduates get the best return on their investment in a university education,
according to a new report. The study by the Organisation for Economic
Co-operation and Development found UK students have an annual return of 17 per
cent com-pared to 7 per cent in Italy and Japan.  www.oecd.org

GMB head to retire

The head of the GMB union is to stand down a year early. John Edmonds, 58,
was to retire in 2004, but will now stand down as general secretary in the new
year. A successor for the 700,000-strong GMB will be found in March, the union
said.  www.gmb.org.uk

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