Find out what your workplace steward can do for you and share in some of our successes
Your CSP steward and safety rep are there to support you on individual workplace problems and to help coordinate collective responses to problems affecting groups of members.
Win 1: Parliamentary engagement
After using the CSP’s new ‘write to your parliamentarian tool’, CSP steward Sophie and colleagues formed a parliamentary delegation to meet online with Sarah Murphy, member of the Senedd for Bridgend.
Our members spoke to the parliamentarian about their workplace, their roles, the different areas they cover and the importance of physiotherapy - describing the frontline roles they played during the pandemic, and the impact they will have on the waiting lists and NHS recovery in Wales.
Sarah agreed to write a letter to Eluned Morgan – the Welsh health minister – reiterating the importance of physiotherapy services and giving her support for the NHS pay campaign, and is now keen to visit with our reps in person at a later date.
Win 2: Maternity pay
A CSP member was advised by their NHS employer that they did not qualify for occupational maternity pay due to not meeting the scheme’s continuous service requirements. The member had performed bank work and private case management work prior to joining their trust, but the trust was not accepting this as continuous service.
With our steward Sian’s assistance, the member raised a grievance which identified previous work as ‘working within the wider health economy’, which should be considered as part of their continuous service. Following the grievance the trust recognised the case management work as continuous service, and accepted that their current policy was not clear enough with regards to bank work. This policy is now due for review with clearer guidance to be produced.
Sian reports that being able to produce relevant documentation – for example full job descriptions from previous employers – supports arguments for roles within the wider health economy.
Win 3: Covid overtime
A NHS trust implemented a Covid-19 overtime policy for between winter 2020 and spring 2021. The scheme was initially open to nursing, midwifery and health care assistant staff, and only in February was the scheme reviewed to include therapy staff.
The CSP’s workplace team saw this as unjust due to the instrumental role physiotherapy played throughout the pandemic and the additional hours worked to support the running of the hospital. With the support of their senior negotiating officer, our reps Jade and Joanne questioned the scope of the scheme on numerous occasions with management at all levels. They also requested back payment for physiotherapy from when the policy was first implemented.
In May, the trust confirmed that payments would be made for physiotherapy staff who worked overtime from the start of the policy.
Our reps’ learning from this case is clear – ‘persistence pays’.
Elsewhere, Lizzie – a CSP steward at a different trust – made a collective grievance for their members. CSP members worked extra shifts over Christmas and New Year on the promise that they would be paid an enhancement on their substantive role, but were instead only paid at a band 3 level. The collective grievance was upheld and our members have now been paid as promised – with Lizzie achieving all this as a new rep yet to go on our rep training!
In our June edition, we told you about our equality reps - CSP stewards with a focus on equity, diversity and belonging issues.
Here is a snapshot of their work so far:
- emailed members at their trust to make members aware of their role and their availability to support with equality issues
- took steps to ensure that interview panels included staff from a Black, Asian and minority ethnic background, and set up a meeting with the director of the department to discuss recruitment arrangements
- set up ‘protected drop-in time’ each week for members to come to them with equality issues and questions
- mainstreamed equity, diversity and belonging considerations in all staff meetings in their department
- piloted an online cultural competency training course to improve intercultural interaction and challenge racialised micro-aggressions
- coordinated physio staff to take the knee at work, and posted it on social media to raise awareness
- put up the CSP’s new equity posters around the workplace
- publicised events related to equity, diversity and belonging, and other important dates to members.
If you need support on an employment matter or on health and safety, contact your workplace rep in the first instance. Or call the CSP Enquiries Team on 020 7306 6666 or firstname.lastname@example.org;
Join the team
The CSP relies on its network of representatives to recruit and support our members. Contact email@example.com to find out more about becoming a steward, safety rep or workplace contact.
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