TUC conference news in brief

The big issues at the TUC conference this week

Pensions

Pension issues dominate the conference in Blackpool. The TUC is calling on
the Government to improve Tupe arrangements and make sure that public sector
employees transferred to the private sector are guaranteed the same level of
pension as they would in the public sector. Compulsory employer contributions
are also being discussed, with a minimum of 3 per cent rising to 10 per cent
over a 10-year period proposed.

Manufacturing

The congress will be discussing how to increase productivity in the
manufacturing industry. It wants manufacturing firms to be bound by law to
train staff and for the Government to offer employers financial incentives to
help them comply. The congress is urging organisations to work closely with
unions on people management issues including, skills building and employee
involvement.

Work-life balance

The TUC will be contributing to the Work Foundation’s work-life balance
inquiry, looking to improve productivity and the quality of working life. It
aims to encourage employers into introducing work-life balance practices and
policies.

Working time

The TUC will be underlining its commitment to ensuring that the UK’s opt out
clause allowing staff to choose to work longer than 48 hours a week under the
Working Time Directive is scrapped. The introduction of an extra three Bank
Holidays will also be discussed to bring the UK in line with Europe’s holiday
entitlement.

FE teachers’ pay

The congress is calling for more pay for further education teachers. Members
are concerned over a decline in post-16 education unless improved benefits are
introduced to attract and retain quality teachers. The TUC will also highlight
the need for extra funding from local government minister Nick Raynsford, to
bring pay levels for all FE staff in line with their school counterparts.

www.tuc.org.uk

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