24 January 2022

Ballot over proposed deal on NATS redeployment and redundancy policies

PCS members in NATS (Air Traffic Systems) are being balloted until 28 January over a proposed deal on redeployment redundancy policies.

Negotiations on management proposals reopened in September following a PCS consultative ballot in which 84% who voted said they were in favour of strike action, with 94% supporting action short of strike, with a 73% turnout.

PCS negotiators met with management demanding the removal of any threats against the existing redundancy agreement, and to seek improvements in industrial relations including assurances on pay increases.

Within weeks we had an agreement to reinstate the redeployment and redundancy policy until the end of December 2022, but in line with Prospect members the current terms would end in January 2023. This would then allow new terms to be negotiated, while all staff are still protected by an existing policy.

Talks with NATS and PCS restarted and after lengthy negotiations we were able to come to terms on an offer which we feel is acceptable to our members and will continue to protect jobs in an industry that is clearly still suffering from the pandemic. 

The headlines of the policies are:

  • Voluntary redundancy terms capped at 18 months’ pay
  • Compulsory terms capped at 22 months’ pay.
  • 4 months to undertake redeployment with the option to take payment in lieu of notice at the end of the 4-month window
  • Marked time pay protection including unsociable hours payment for all PCS grades and a 6-week trial period for any new role including full training.

PCS believes these terms protect the long-term future of our members.

The branch committee is recommending members accept these new terms and have arranged briefings at different times so everyone is fully aware of all the information before casting their vote.

The aviation sector has been hit as hard as any other sector during the pandemic and the fact we can negotiate good terms and conditions which protect members’ future is paramount and gives hope that recovery in all industries within PCS is just around the corner.