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11 January 2013
This is the text of a joint statement has been issued by GMB and Sodexo on 10th January 2013.
Following negotiations between GMB and Sodexo that took place in London to resolve the ongoing dispute about Sodexo's contract in Brighton & Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust, a proposal has been made to resolve the dispute which will now be put to staff on site.
The dispute centered around planned redundancies on the contract and the Company's difficulties in paying staff properly.
The proposal to resolve the dispute includes a commitment to ensuring any pay queries are immediately resolved, that all affected employeeswill receive an additional annual leave allowance to compensate them for the problems they have encountered, a commitment to actively seek voluntary redundancies before any compulsory redundancies are made and a further reduction in the maximum number of compulsory redundancies that could be made.
If the current ballot for industrial action which closes tomorrow provides a mandate for industrial action, this will be temporarily suspended to allow time for GMB to consult members to see if they accept the proposal.
Gary Palmer, GMB Organiser, said:“We are pleased that we now have a proposal that can be put to members for their consideration. This has been an extremely stressful time for staff on site but we are hopeful that a way forward has been found. As always, it will be GMB members who will make the decision through the balloting process which will now take place.”
Greg Austin, HR Director Sodexo, said: “We are pleased that we have been able to reach an agreement on a proposal to resolve the dispute. We recognise that this is a difficult time for our employees and our focus is on resolving the issues as quickly as possible and ensuring that patient care is not affected.”