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Welcome November 27, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in About us, Carphone Warehouse, Getting involved, Irlam, Kelvin Close, News, Preston, Rights, TalkTalk, TTT, Warrington, Wednesbury.
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The Reps and fellow members of the CWU would like to offer a warm welcome to all those who have joined us in the last few months.

If you haven’t received your membership card yet you soon will. If you have any questions please contact and we will do our best to help you.

If you haven’t already, check out SOME of the many BENEFITS of your union membership here; http://www.cwu.org/benefits.html and

http://www.cwu.one1one.co.uk/  and http://www.cwu.one1one.co.uk/specialoffers.cfm




Together we can make a REAL difference

Any organisation needs honest feedback on how it is doing and we, the administrators of the ‘Workers site welcome your thoughts, ideas and feedback on what we can do to help you gain information and improve the service the CWU provides.

The union movement is all about involvment and input. If you want to get involved either as a rep or as a point of contact please contact us. Remember all correspondence to this site is confidential.

Taking any active role in the movement will increase your knowledge and your awareness of  the issues we all face in employment and society in general.

Becoming a union member helps us all to achieve…….

Respect and Dignity in the Workplace

 “Where trade unions are most firmly organized, there are the rights of the people most respected. “

Samuel Gompers

CWU main site www.cwu.org/home/

Stress UPDATED October 23, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in Carphone Warehouse, Health & Safety, Irlam, Kelvin Close, News, Opal, Preston, Rights, Shops, SMC, Stanford House, Stress, TalkTalk, TTT, Warrington, Wednesbury.
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UPDATED 23/10/2011

Management Standards for work related stress

Under UK law, employers have a ‘duty of care’ to protect the health, safety and welfare of all employees while at work. They also have to assess the risks arising from hazards at work including work-related stress.

What are the Management Standards for work related stress?

The Management Standards define the characteristics, or culture, of an organisation where the risks from work related stress are being effectively managed and controlled.

The Management Standards cover six key areas of work design that, if not properly managed, are associated with poor health and well-being, lower productivity and increased sickness absence. In other words, the six Management Standards cover the primary sources of stress at work.

see http://www.hse.gov.uk/stress/standards/  for the six Management Standards

SEE ALSO ; http://www.employmentlawwatch.com/tags/dickins-v-o2/

Part time workers and PC users October 22, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in Carphone Warehouse, Health & Safety, Kelvin Close, News, Opal, Part Time Workers, Preston, Rights, Shops, SMC, Stanford House, Stress, Wednesbury.
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Part time workers and PC users

Many part-time workers are often forced to work their short shift without a break. The regulations are clear that until six hours are worked there is no automatic right to a break.

Yet, this can be concidered unreasonable for all workers. In particular when working with a PC monitor and keyboard or in need of drinks and toilet breaks.

If you are a part timer and instructed by your manager that you are not entitled to a break then concider asking for small “comfort breaks” to allow time away from the your desk to stretch your legs and have a break from the PC.

The regulations may state one thing but your body and mind may tell you another and you need a break.  Afterall your full time colleagues have a break every two to three hours on average so why cant a part timer?

The regulations for PC oprators is covered by regulations on the link below.


Most jobs provide opportunities to take a break from the screen, eg to do filing
or photocopying. Make use of them. If there are no such natural breaks in your
job, your employer should plan for you to have rest breaks. Frequent short
breaks are better than fewer long ones.

other links of interest.




The curious case of the BONUS not a bonus August 24, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in Bonuses, Carphone Warehouse, Kelvin Close, News, Pay, Preston, Stanford House, Targets, Warrington.
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Apparently a bonus cant be paid on insurance selling or saving a cancellation because of FSA rules. Fair enough so far, (if that is the case), because it is “incentivising.”
BUT when the employee doesn’t save enough insurance cancellations then 10% of the employees overall bonus is affected and can be lost.

But, hang on, IF bonus on selling insurance is banned because it is incentivising, then isn’t NOT Saving insurance also incentivising if it is part of the overall bonus conditions?

If you are affected or can shed light on this curious rule then please get in touch

TT Home Movers: CWU member elected in campaign for fair targets September 15, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Preston, TalkTalk, Targets.
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Workers in Home Movers have elected CWU member Gemma Fitzpatrick to represent them on the company’s “Chat back” forum – an employee consultation body.  Gemma’s election marks a stage in CWU members’ campaign to address a number of issues faced by workers in the TT Operations department.  As we have previously reported, their concerns include bonuses, targets, holidays, and performance management.

In particular, workers are concerned about changes in the bonus structure which make their bonus payout dependent on the statistics relating to the Service Level Agreement.  Because this is in turn affected by how much work is coming in, it is not something that the workers have any control over: however well they work, if more work in total comes into the department, they may still lose their bonus as a result.

Gemma told Carphone Worker, “As union members, we think the company needs to listen to what we have to say.  And as an elected representative of workers in Home Movers, it’s my role to listen to what everyone has to say, and put those views across clearly to the company.”

Michael Parkinson, CWU rep in Home Movers told us that “ultimately, we want to be negotiating with the company, not just being consulted.  That’s what sets a well organised union apart from a consultative body.”

Preston: open union drop in after work this Wednesday… August 10, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Carphone Warehouse, Preston.
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We’ve all got questions.  Sometimes, a union can give answers.  Come to our open meeting and drop in session…

When? This Wednesday (12 August), open meeting from 8.30pm, drop in to talk to a union officer any time from 4.30pm

Where? CWU office, opposite Tulketh Mill (corner of Balcarres Road and Blackpool Road)

What? A chance to talk about things going on at work with other workers, find out more about the union, and tell the union what matters to you…

For more information contact your CWU rep in Carphone Warehouse (upstairs), Laura Johnson: laura.katherine.johnson1@gmail.com

TT home movers: workers speak out together… July 27, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Bonuses, Preston, TalkTalk.
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38 workers in the Home Movers department (TT Operations) in Preston have signed a letter to TT OPs Customer Service Manager James Snellgrove, asking for a meeting.  The workers want to talk to Mr Snellgrove about a series of concerns, including bonuses, targets, holidays, and performance management.

In particular, workers are concerned about changes in the bonus structure which make their bonus payout dependent on the statistics relating to the Service Level Agreement.  Because this is in turn affected by how much work is coming in, it is not something that the workers have any control over: however well they work, if more work in total comes into the department, they may still lose their bonus as a result.

The 38 workers put their names to the letter, which was also signed by CWU branch officer Glenn Slater.  In total, 40 of the 50 workers in the department had the chance to sign the letter: a very strong signal.  The letter was handed to Mr Snellgrove on Friday 17 July.

Carphone Worker hears alot from workers who aren’t happy with changes that have been made, in particular when bonus structures or shift patterns are changed in ways that don’t take them into account.  If all workers spoke out together, maybe we’d be able to do something about it.    The Home Movers workers have taken an excellent step in this direction.

This website censored again – this time at Preston! April 27, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Censorship, Irlam, Preston, SMC.
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Incredibly, following the climbdown by the censors at Irlam, it appears that as of Friday, http://www.carphoneworker.co.uk has been unavailable from computers at Tulketh Mill, Preston.

Once again, we have not been contacted by the company to explain why this might be.  Indeed, we still have not received any written communication from the company explaining why they censored the site at Irlam, or why they decided to uncensor it.  Communication Workers Union officials have had conversations with public relations staff at Carphone Warehouse Group who have said they will put their objections to our briefing to SMC workers in writing, but they have so far not done so.  Could this be because the accusation that we are providing innacurate inbriefings is impossible to substantiate in writing, on the record?  Carphone Worker thinks so… (more…)

Credit crunch bites: the great hash brown rebellion April 16, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Preston, TalkTalk.
Is this the end?

Is this the end?

Stirrings of revolt reach the ears of Carphone Worker, tucked away in our bunker opposite Tulketh Mill, Preston. Apparently, the hash browns have been withdrawn from the canteen on the grounds that they are “too expensive”. Already battered to despair by the credit crunch, wild eyed customer service agents have apparently launched a conspiracy to submit a deluge of canteen feed-back forms demanding that the glistening potato-based treats are returned.

Carphone Worker urges all lovers of freedom (and lunch) to get involved. (Make sure you mark the service up though: workers’ solidarity and all that.)

In completely unrelated news, Carphone Worker learns that TalkTalk employees who have been with the company for more than ten years are now entitled to 30 days annual leave, after an annoucement dated 13 April. We are so touched by the company’s generosity to its many workers of more than ten years service, that we will personally buy a hash brown for each and every one of these workers who comes forward.

It won’t be expensive, even given the evident inflation in the hash brown index. TalkTalk was launched in 2003; no one has worked for the company for more than six years. Edit: as already noted below, TalkTalk Group – to which the announcement applies – contains employees with more than ten years service as it includes staff from companies other than TalkTalk itself.

Target changes in TT WiFi and 2nd line – what’s the score? April 15, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in Bonuses, Pay, Preston, TalkTalk, Targets.

Q: When is a target not a target?

A: When you’re not supposed to hit it!

OK, it’s not very funny.  It’s even less funny if you work at Preston’s TalkTalk WiFi and 2nd Line Broadband  department.  Since – appropriately enough – April Fools Day, they’ve had their target structure change, with the probable effect that many workers are looking at losing a significant chunk of take home pay every month – perhaps up to £50 a month, equivalent to £600 a year.

Local CWU officer Glenn Slater who has also been advising workers in Tech Support has produced a briefing for the WiFi and 2nd Line Broadband.  Read the WiFi/2nd Line briefing here.