Internal changes within PCS have led to a few adjustments on how personal cases are dealt with.
These minor changes have come about as part of the Strategic Review, which revised some of the union’s structures and ways of working. This included the merger of the membership department and the Legal & Personal Case Unit into the new PCS Support Centre.
The relevant sections of the PCS website have been refreshed, so reps can find the information they need.
Key updates and reminders include:
- PCU1 forms have been updated to show a new postal address for Support Centre caseworkers based in the Birmingham hub. However, wherever possible, reps are asked to email documents to the Support Centre at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The email@example.com email address reaches support staff in both Birmingham and London. Work has been digitised to allow for sharing of documents.
- The new PCU1 forms now include a section that needs to be signed by the member, to give authority for their personal emails to be shared with the union’s lawyers, if needed. Please ensure all new submissions for advice include the member’s signature.
- All referrals that relate to collective issues – such as terms and conditions affecting many members or queries on whether terms are legal – should now go via a Group/National Branch Industrial Officer first. This means they can take them up collectively with the employer and consider whether any wider groups of workers are affected.
- Requests for representation for members – where it’s not feasible to get representation from a local rep – should also go through the administrative teams where your Group/National Branch Industrial Officer is based.
- Employment Tribunal (ET) cases, which have very strict time limits, should ideally be sent to the Support Centre no later than 4 weeks before the ET deadline. Before an ET claim can be lodged it’s now a legal requirement, in most cases, that claimants first go through the Acas Early Conciliation Process (EC). See BB67.18 for a step-by-step guide to handling a potential ET case.
- Pension and compensation scheme queries are no longer handled by the Support Centre in the first instance. Cases should be referred to your PCS Industrial Officer, or the PCS Pensions Officer Martin John, at firstname.lastname@example.org
The Support Centre is reiterating to reps that the most effective way to handle straightforward personal cases is as locally as possible.
Reps are reminded to make sure their members know who they are and how they can be contacted. More complex cases would normally be handled by branch officers. Examples of typical straightforward and complex cases are listed in the branch briefing BB67.18, which is available in the PCS document library.
020 7801 2651