Bectu, AEP, POA become latest unions to get behind the manifesto for collective bargaining

Submitted by sglenister on Thu, 24/10/2013 - 10:28

For immediate release

24 October 2013

The number of unions officially backing the Institute of Employment Rights' Manifesto for Collective Bargaining has grown to 13 following the addition of media and entertainment union BECTU, the Association of Educational Psychologists (AEP) and the Professional Trades union for Prison, Correctional & Secure Psychiatric Workers (POA).

Other unions already backing the Manifesto include Unite, Unison, GMB, NUT, PCS, UCU, ASLEF, CWU, ATL and RMT.

Among the proposals in the ten-point Manifesto – which is designed to ensure workers have a voice around the negotiating table and to stimulate economic demand – are:

  • Establishing a Ministry of Labour to ensure workers have a voice in parliament separate from that of corporations;
  • The gradual reintroduction of sectoral bargaining – that is the negotiation on pay and conditions between trade unions and employers at a sectoral level;
  • Incentives for employers to engage with collective bargaining – such as disallowing companies which refuse to negotiate with their employees from public sector contracts;
  • An overhaul of trade union recognition legislation to ensure that workers always have the right to be represented by their trade union in work-related matters and that unions are recognised by employers if at least 10% of the workforce are members.

General Secretary of POA Steve Gillan said:
"It is vitally important that a statutory framework for collective bargaining is achieved in order to protect workers' rights after decades of their eradication."

John Hendy, co-author of Reconstruction after the Crisis: a manifesto for collective bargaining, said:
"A fundamental problem with the British economy is the dramatic drop in the value of wages. As well as painfully diminishing the standard of living for most people (while the rich enjoy ever increasing wealth) this has depressed demand causing the loss of jobs, loss of tax revenue and one of the worst performing economies in Europe. A vital way to re-establish the value of wages, decrease inequality, and stimulate job creation, is to reinstate sectoral collective bargaining - that is collective bargaining on an industry by industry basis."

Professor Keith Ewing, co-author of Reconstruction after the Crisis: a manifesto for collective bargaining, said:
"There will be no long-term solution to current economic gloom without raising wages and equalising incomes. Only by doing so will we stimulate demand, increase spending, and create real and fully productive jobs that do not need to be subsidised by the State."

– END –

Notes to Editors:
For further information, contact:
Carolyn Jones, Director of the IER
0151 207 5265

The manifesto for collective bargaining:

Read the ten-point version of the manifesto here. The full publication is on sale here; review copies available for free.

Economic impact of collective bargaining:

Please see our infographic for a brief illustration of the economic impact of collective bargaining.


The Institute of Employment Rights was established in February 1989. It is a network of academics and lawyers acting as a focal point for the spread of new ideas in the field of labour law. It is an independent charity supported by trade unions representing over 6 million UK workers. See; Tel: 0151 207 5265.

Professor Keith Ewing:

Keith Ewing is Professor of Public Law at King’s College London. He is President of the Institute of Employment Rights and Legal editor of the journal International Union Rights. He is also a Vice President of the Campaign for Trade Union Freedoms.

John Hendy QC:

John Hendy QC is a leading employment law barrister, operating from Old Square Chambers London and H P Higgins Chambers in Sydney Australia. He is Chairman of the Institute of Employment Rights, vice-chairman of the International Centre for Trade Union Rights (ICTUR)and a Vice President of the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom. John is standing counsel to UNITE, ASLEF,CWU, NUJ, NUM, POA, RMT and UCU.


BECTU is the UK's media and entertainment trade union; sectors covered include broadcasting, film, independent production, theatre and the arts, leisure and digital media.


The Association of Educational Psychologists is the trade union and professional association for Educational Psychologists in the United Kingdom. It is the only trade union and professional association in the UK organised exclusively for and by Educational Psychologists.


The POA is the largest union in the United Kingdom representing Uniformed Prison Grades and staff working within the field of Secure Forensic Psychiatric Care, with over 35 thousand members in the public and private sectors.

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