COTA's 2010-11 Offer: Troops to Decide

17th June 2010

To All Unite the Union and RMT Offshore Caterers (COTA grades A to E)

COTA Wage Negotiations and paid leave proposals 2010/11

Further to the joint Union / COTA communication in May we write to update you on matters relating to the annual wage negotiations.

On the 24th of May COTA made an offer and the key elements of this are set out below. The full details will be communicated to you as part of the consultation process.

The offer on the table is an all-encompassing one, meaning the total package must be accepted or rejected by our members.

Details on the consultation process are attached in a joint Union / COTA statement and we would encourage all members to fully participate.

In the meantime we thought it necessary to write to you individually to explain things from a Union perspective.

There were two main areas to this proposal split into the annual wage negotiation and how to resolve the existing paid leave claims while giving greater contractual entitlement to paid leave moving forward.

Annual wage negotiations

This is the simplest part to explain and has resulted in the following offer.

Wage increase on all rates of pay


Increase in accommodation allowances by £10 from £30 to £40


Increase in dinner meal allowance from £10 to £15


Increase on two furthest travel bands from £80 to £85 & from £105 to £110


Total value of this part of offer


Paid Leave proposals

The proposal to resolve the paid leave claims is far more complex and has two parts:

• A financial settlement to resolve the existing paid leave Employment Tribunal claims.

• A review of the COTA agreement to ensure a legally binding, greater contractual entitlement to paid leave.  Worth up to 3.85%.

The full value of this package for any member who is having their paid leave increased would be between 3.96% and 6.16% depending on the number of claw back days used, plus any settlement figure for existing Employment Tribunal claims. For those who already benefit from an enhanced rota, the financial package would be worth 2.31% plus any settlement figure for existing Employment Tribunal claims.

As full time officers we have been under increasing pressure from the membership to reduce the number of hours our membership are currently working, especially from those members not benefiting from a client gifted enhanced rota

During our meeting on the 24th of May 2010 the Joint Negotiating Committee took into consideration our member's aspirations, as well as feed back from our Joint Shop Stewards meetings on 17th of February, 3rd and 10th of March 2010 regarding the COTA paid leave proposals. The feedback from all Shop Stewards in attendance at those meetings was that if their concerns were addressed, and there was no wage freeze for a second year, then this would be a proposal which could be placed in front of the membership.

Having considered the offer in full including the introduction of the new COTA agreement which now gives a new contractual entitlement to paid leave for all our members, the improvements COTA have made to the original paid leave proposals, the possible time scale for a final legal ruling on working time and the associated cost involved, not to mention the risks of the decision going against us, the Joint Negotiating Committee recommends this offer is accepted.

The phone ballot will be run from:

Monday 5th to Friday 9th of July 2010

Lines will be open all day between 9.00 am to 5.00 pm Monday to Thursday and 9.00 am to 3.00 pm on Friday.

To register your vote, phone 01224 582688

You need to be aware that should the majority of the Union membership choose to accept this offer; the Unions must abide by the terms of the agreement and withdraw support for any remaining claims.

Note; as a Union we cannot force anyone to withdraw their claim, the only person capable of withdrawing a claim is the claimant themselves.

Details of the value of any settlement will be discussed directly with the member concerned. Members who have submitted claims should contact their respective Union for full details of claims submitted and their settlement value.

Should this offer be accepted by our membership, COTA have agreed to include within any settlement, Employment Tribunal claims resulting from paid leave applications for 2009/10 which they have received prior to 7.6.10

For the avoidance of any doubt, should you not accept the recommendation from the Joint Shop Stewards Negotiation Committee then you must be prepared to take industrial action. We would therefore ask all members to ensure that their contact I employment details are fully up to date including job, employer and unit name.


Mr. John Taylor Regional Industrial Organiser Unite the Union

Mr. Jake Molloy Regional Organiser RMT 

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