Sunday, 13 May 2018

Unite, Equal Pay and Chocolate Teapots

Lots of readers have shared comments about Unite in the wake of its childish walkout during equal pay settlement talks in Glasgow.

I'm sure they won't be missed because they haven't lifted a finger to help in the fight to overturn the City Council's 'unfit for purpose' WPBR pay scheme, and it seems lots of readers agree - when it comes to equal pay Unite have been about as much use as a chocolate teapot.

Stefan what exactly has Karl done for them to be scared ? Is he really a big bad wolf lol


He’s a classic lamb in wolfs clothing. Me, I’m not nice, more of a wolf in wolfs clothing.

Stefan Cross

They make you laugh there still holding on to the council coat tails


I'd be worried if I was with unite x


I emailed Unite union an was told what a4es posted last week wasn’t exactly accurate... given the fact I’ve had dealings b4 with the Unite union official before I knew what Stefan Cross had written was true...that is why I’m in the process of leaving Unite to join unison...


Yep Stefan you're worth every penny of it .patience of a saint waiting 13 years to be paid hard enough us waiting on our monthly wage lol


Scared of the truth


Shocking wot have they folks been paying there dues for all these years for shame on them. Thank you Stefan


I hope you get paid soon too Stefan Cross


you deserve every penny


I’ve said all along a4es have been working for nothing all these years Thankyou and everyone who is in a union pay a monthly sum in my opinion they have earned more than what we are even owed and have a cheek to say they charge yes if they win you all charge and have done nothing for years until Stefan came on board or we would still be getting robbed and paying for the privilege bunch of arseholes the lot of them keep up the pressure Stefan u got this x




at least you work for the money that we all hopefully get soon !!!


and that is why I have left Unite and joined GMB

How much money wil a4es make from the claim


We charge 10% plus vat of whatever we recover for our clients on a no win no fee basis. That is gross income and doesn’t take into account money spent over 13 years which runs into millions and still ongoing. Profit is different from turnover. But a lot I hope. The more we get for our clients the more we stand to make in the end.

Stefan Cross

So grateful for everything you and ae4 have done Stefan. Thank u .


You know what puzzles me stefan unions have had £millions of pounds of members contribution since the 1999 single status agreement yet not one could employ someone with your expertise in equal pay and then have the nerve to criticise you and a4es


odd isn’t it. Have you ever heard a tv or radio presenter ask any other lawyer whose won a case how much they’ll get paid? Yet it’s always their first Q to me. when I’m winning money for underpaid staff they’re not interested in that injustice

Stefan Cross

a know stefan people forget what the claims are for 


Scaredy Cat Unions and Dead Sheep (12/05/18)

I promised to say my tuppence worth about the 'scaredy cats' at Unite once I stopped laughing at the bizarre statement issued on the union's behalf.

Here's the killer paragraph which had me laughing like a drain: 

"The reason for walking out was because this outside body should not have a say on the new job evaluation scheme that the council are trying to implement. .This is an external body and should not be given that kind of power as these people have no such experience or expertise in these complex matters..Council officials and Trade Unions are the ones who should be involved in setting out anything to do with job evaluation and ow best to protect our terms and conditions."

Now the first thing to say is that Unite's confidence in 'council officials' is very touching, but is badly misplaced because these same senior officials are the ones who commissioned and introduced the 'unfit for purpose' WPBR in the first place.

Along with its 37 hour 'rule' and discriminatory practices overtime working and holiday pay arrangements etc etc.

And, of course, Unite are not going to restrain or influence the City Council's 'wise' officials second time around because Unite have played no role in the hearings at the Employment Tribunal, Employment Appeal Tribunal or the Court of Session - which finally resulted in the WPBR pay scheme being condemned as 'unfit for purpose' in Scotland's highest civil court.

Now trying to ride on the coat tails of A4ES, Unison and GMB is one thing, but 'telling your granny how to suck eggs' is quite another, so it's little wonder that angry union members are leaving Unite to join Unison or GMB.


Scaredy Union Cats and Dead Sheep (11/05/18)

Stefan Cross is none too impressed with the behaviour of the scaredy union cats at Unite who have been about as much use as a 'chocolate teapot', up until now, in the long fight for equal pay with Glasgow City Council. 

I'll have more to say myself in the next day or two (once I manage to stop laughing), but as the old  Labour warhorse Dennis Healey might have said - being attacked on equal pay by Unite is like 'being savaged by a 'dead sheep'.



Since my last post about UNITE walking out of the WPBR meeting,the only equal pay meeting they’ve ever attended, Mark Alexander posted a letter UNITE sent to members. Marks post produced an amazingly long response from a Rosemary Lieser who says she’s a Unite rep. It has a lot of words that basically confirm what I said in my post. (Unite have done nothing on equal pay except pass forms to Thompsons and walk out of a meeting because Karl B was in the room)

One of funny things is that in all her posts she seems terrified to actually mention our names. She can’t bring herself to type A4ES or Action4equality, stefan cross, Mark Irvine or  Karl Bromley. We get referred to as “outside bodies’ or “outside lawyers”. What scaredy-cats.

Amongst all the words they have just come out with the same old stuff, lawyers charge, we are free. Actually not true. We haven’t charged anyone anything yet, I’ve been working for free for 13 years so far, but Unite have had their membership dues for 13 years. Though, I do hope you will get some money soon so I can get paid!

Then they say Thompsons are acting for their members. Not in the negotiations they’re not. In the negotiations they only act for GMB members.

So what exactly have Unite done? 

Nothing except cling to the coat tails of A4ES and the other unions. 

How many equal pay tribunals have UNITE officers attended?

None that I know of. 

How many members meetings on equal pay organised? 


How many claims submitted? 

Not known but believed to be a tiny percentage. A4ES has 7500 claims, GMB and UNISON approximately 2000 each. 

Perhaps Ms Lieser can confirm how many unite have submitted. I’d certainly be interested.

The Negotiation Terms of Reference agreed with the council do not include UNITE or Unite claims. Any settlement may not apply to Unite, just as it might not apply to unrepresented folk or other small claims firms. It probably will but that is yet to be decided. It is certainly the case that A4ES, GMB and UNISON claimants will be dealt with first. Anyone not in these groups will have to wait their turn.

The non poaching agreement between A4ES, GMB and UNISON does not include UNITE. Unite members are free to transfer their claims or membership to whoever they like. They would then be included in any settlement we agreed.

On the negotiations for a new pay and grading structure A4ES,UNISON,GMB and the council all agreed UNITE as a recognised TU should attend. The fact they abandoned their members interests simply because Karl Bromley was attending (with the agreement of everyone else) is astonishing but maybe it’s just more scaredy-cats from them.

A4ES has had many disagreements with the unions in the past, and no doubt vice versa, but we’ve tried to put aside our differences with GMB and UNISON and are working together. It’s a shame that UNITE are too scared to move on from 2006 and are still slagging off ,we dare not name them, ‘outside bodies ‘ whilst, in my view, not properly representing their female members. Hopefully they will change their minds and return to the WPBR negotiating table. They will find that Karl is very nice, talented and useful. Not someone to be scared of!

Stefan Cross

Here is the statement made by Rosemary Lieser of Unite

Rosemary Lieser

5 May 14:19

Okay guys normally I don't comment on this page as all I hear is about Unison..but to hear you being disrespectful to Unite who have done nothing wrong here I have decided to speak up...I am a Unite workplace rep..I don't know many of the home carers as I mainly deal with catering and cleaning side..but I will try and explain Unites position on Equal pay..I have advised my members who hadn't an original claim with this outside body who are dealing with a lot of your claims to place their claim with Unites lawyers Thompsons which they have done.Thompsons are dealing with these claims and everyone who has a claim with them should have received paperwork and confirmation that this is in progress. .Thompsons will then work on your behalf with no cost to the member..that means whatever compensation you get awarded then that's what you will receive in full unlike these outside lawyers who will take their Unite has had no need to intervene up to now..The reason they are getting involved now is because our terms and conditions are being discussed so therefore Unite wants to ensure that their members terms and conditions are protected without any detriment to the member..Which brings me to why they walked out at last week's meeting.The reason for walking out was because this outside body should not have a say on the new job evaluation scheme that the council are trying to implement. .This is an external body and should not be given that kind of power as these people have no such experience or expertise in these complex matters..Council officials and Trade Unions are the ones who should be involved in setting out anything to do with job evaluation and ow best to protect our terms and conditions..Unite the union are only making sure that the council comply with a proper proceedure on how to implement this and who it should involve..It saddens me to see members jump the gun without knowing the facts..any member only has to phone Unite Office and ask to speak to someone if they have any queries or if you need an update..but to be honest they will tell you the same as I am telling you and that is as long as you have your claim in then Thompsons is working on your behalf..Unison are perfectly entitled to hold regular meetings with it's members but to be quite frank with you they won't be doing any more than Unite are doing...This is a long drawn out process that will take time I know you are all pissed of waiting but blaming Unite and crossing over to another union is not going to get your money any quicker...All claims will be paid out at same time regardless of what union you are in that's a fact..Unison nor GMB will get a settlement any quicker. All 3 Unions will have a say in negotiations when it comes to job evaluation and until this is done in the best interests of all then we will not see any settlement anytime soon..Unison and GMB will know this ..There is a lot at stake here not just compensation money it's all our terms and conditions too..Unite are only trying to protect their members and if it means not sitting in on meetings where an outside party is there then they will have to make sure there is a line drawn where these outside bodies cannot cross or get any power to discuss anything to do with our terms and conditions..I hope this clarifies this better for you and hopefully I won't have to read about members whinging about Unite..Like I said you only have to phone and ask for someone to speak to you..My mam is Rose Lieser if you phone head office at John Smith House you can ask for my phone number and they will give it to you..I would be more than happy to speak to you or you can ask to speak to an Officer...Catherine Murdoch will know who I am and she can give you my phone number.

Ugly Unite Behaviour (08/05/18)

I understand that the three 'eejits' who made such fools of themselves and their trade union at last week's meeting with the Council to discuss the WPBR were:

Willie McGonigle, George Murdoch and Stevie Dougall – Unite.

Here's what some of their members (and ex-members) had to say about their antics on Facebook.



I'm with unite but changing to unison


Disgrace xxx


Omg thats shocking thought when they said they where coming out with us on strike it was good for there claimants this is so wrong there clients should all move over to another union and sue them for misrepresenting them how unprofessional are they x


Those poor members


Shocking way to act when they are getting paid by the union


Also they are £14-£15 per month to join them and they can’t fight for their members? Shocking! Glad I switched a while ago. X


I’m with them,defo moving to unison


Omg what shud i do can i move to unison x


Yes wouldn't stay with a union not prepared to fight for me x


A Joke!! Mx


Im with unite 😡what do i do to cancel membership and go with Unison


I'm with unite but changing to unison I'm meeting the Rep on Tuesday at McDonald's in Easter house at 11.30


Bloody joke


Disgraceful. They should be ashamed of themselves


Got a meaningless letter of them yesterday in my branch from shop steward to full time officials i think they have all joined a new order and taken a vow of silence jokers


These are the ones that try to ride on the coat tails of yourselves stefan,bloodshed the lot of them,shame for the claimants. Says it all when they walk out after 5 minsx



Ugly Unite Behaviour (06/05/18)

Stefan Cross posted this update from Friday's meeting between the Claimants and the City Council to discuss the WPBR.

Now anyone who knows Karl Bromley, knows that you could not find a more helpful, decent  or obliging person.

Karl has not only done sterling work for Glasgow's equal pay claimants, he did the same in North Lanarkshire recently, over equal pay pension calculations, and his efforts benefited all of the claimant organisations, GMB and Unison members, as well as clients of A4ES. 

So it's rather galling that union 'goons' from Unite (which has played no role in the long fight for equal pay, as Stefan explains) should turn up at important Glasgow WPBR meeting and make fools of themselves in this way.

If needs be, I'll go along to a future meeting and wipe the floor with the clowns and once I find out the names of the individuals involved, I'll post the information on the blog site.    


Strange events this week. As you know the claimant group consists of A4ES UNISON and GMB. It does not include UNITE. 

Indeed unite has virtually no involvement in the claims at all. They have very few claims at all, and even those tiny number of claims they basically passed to solicitors and ignored them. They have not attended any of the tribunals, just travelling on the coat tails of whoever Thompsons solicitors were representing at the time.

Despite this they are a recognised trade union and we agreed that they should be part of the sub group discussing WPBR and new terms and conditions.

The first meeting of that group took place yesterday. So what contribution did UNITE make to this group. Nothing THEY WALKED OUT OF THE MEETING in the first 5 minutes. 


Because a Karl Bromley was there representing A4ESs 7500 claimants! So 3 unite officials abandoned their members in a fit of meaningless pique. How pathetic is that!

The truth is that unite has a non existent record on equal pay, mostly trying to avoid it. In England they refused to participate in single status as they thought it would erode the differentials for their male members. Of all the major trade unions they have the Worst Gender Pay Gap and 75% of the senior officers are men. Perhaps I shouldn’t be surprised but I was.

So to sum up, Unite’s total involvement so far has been to attend one meeting and walk out in less than 5 minutes. Impressive! 

Stefan Cross