Amicus the Union

Amicus the Union

March 21, 2007 11:03 ET

Law College accused of breach of employment rights

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(CCNMatthews - March 21, 2007) - Amicus trade union has made a formal application to the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC), the body charged with arbitrating in disputes between employers and trade unions on representation in workplaces and other matters, over the failure of the College of Law to implement employment rights.
The move was prompted by College of Law's failure to accept union recognition of Amicus on its' Birmingham campus, despite over 50% of tutors there being members.

The issue was first taken to the Arbitration Conciliation Advisory Service (ACAS) but the parties did not reach agreement on a voluntary recognition agreement. The matter now moves to the CAC which can decide to order a 'statutory agreement' for recognition. This would give the union the right to negotiate on behalf of the tutors on matters such as pay, hours of work, holidays, pensions and other terms and conditions.

The College, which provides legal qualifications for solicitors, barristers and paralegals, has other sites in Guildford, Chester, Birmingham and Bloomsbury, Moorgate and Chancery Lane. Amicus has been negotiating to get recognition and conducted a petition which shows that 54.4% of tutoring staff want Amicus to represent them and negotiate their pay increases.

The union claims that the College's refusal is in violation of staffs' wishes and in breach of the law on statutory recognition.

The College has written a letter to all staff which the union says demonstrates the College's old fashioned and pejorative view of trade unions.

Mike Robinson, Amicus' National Officer for the Education Sector, said:
"I have written to the College of Law Chief Executive Nigel Savage pointing out that the impression the college is portraying about Amicus is outdated.

"In the modern world of work union members come from all walks of life, vicars, psychologists, computer staff are all members of Amicus so why not solicitors and their tutors. Even the House of Commons and the House of Lords that make law have Amicus members but the College of Law refuses to deal with the union. It is old fashioned anti union prejudice that should stop."

Notes to Editors
1. Copies of both letters is available on request.

Contact Information

  • Martin Scanlon
    Amicus Press Office
    020 7420 8934 or 07764 655751
    Mike Robinson
    National Officer for Higher Education
    024 7622 7522