New Terms & Conditions
The huge supermarket chain, ASDA (owned by Walmart) has recently done a review of all of its 120,000 hourly paid staff contracts and current employees are far from happy about the change.
Employees are apparently being forced to sign the new employment contracts or they will be terminated. The changes are said to include an increase in basic hourly pay, but fewer paid breaks, less pay on bank holidays and fewer higher paid night shift hours.
One employee who was employed for 13 years has already been sacked for failing to sign the new terms and conditions and he is planning to take the supermarket giant all the way to the employment tribunal. There are a further 300 staff who have also not yet signed their new contracts and it remains to be seen if they will also be sacked if they fail to sign up to them.
The union involved (GMB) said that they are looking to work with every individual member who does not want to sign the new terms, with a view to lodging a claim which might be based on unfair dismissal (for employees who have more than 2 years’ service), sex discrimination or potentially disability discrimination.
Remain Safe When Changing Terms and Conditions
In the first instance we would encourage any organisation to take advice before starting any process of this nature.
If you wish to change employee contracts, it is important to show a sound business reason for wishing to implement the changes. It is also key to ensure that you have followed a fair process so that a claim for unfair dismissal would be unlikely to succeed.
Then the key thing is communicate with employees and ensure that a full consultation process takes place. The last resort should be terminating someone’s employment and we would encourage organisations to be as flexible as possible to accommodating employees differing needs.
If in doubt, contact us!