Tribunal finds for GMB in case of branch secretary’s advice

A former branch secretary has lost his case for unfair dismissal against the GMB union.

An employment tribunal ruled that Peter Hamilton, former South Tyneside GMB branch secretary, broke GMB policy after he advised female workers to seek legal advice away from the union when claiming equal pay compensation.

Instead he referred workers to Newcastle-based Stefan Cross solicitors. Hamilton, who had worked for the GMB for 14 years, claimed he was only doing his job.

The ruling was linked to low-paid female council workers who are in line for payouts totalling £20m after a separate employment tribunal found they had been underpaid for years.

The GMB said the union had been “vindicated” by the tribunal’s decision.

Stefan Cross, who represented Hamilton, said: “Mr Hamilton is extremely disappointed but not surprised because we got that indication from the tribunal. The ruling was based on a policy of law we simply don’t agree with and we will be appealing the decision.”

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