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Trade union facility time

As a public sector employer, the Kent and Medway Fire and Rescue Authority is required to report and publish information on facility time for employees who are trade union representatives.

Facility time is when an employee takes time off from their normal role to carry out their duties and activities as a trade union representative.

The Authority is required to publish information on trade union facility time under the ‘Trade Union (Facility Time Publication Requirements) Regulations 2017’ and the ‘Local Government Transparency Code 2015’. The relevant information under each of the requirements is set out below.

Trade Union (Facility Time Publication Requirements) Regulations 2017

Number of employees who were relevant union officials during the relevant period

At present the number of Fire Brigades Union (FBU) officials recognised is six: brigade secretary, brigade chair, brigade membership secretary/vice-chair, brigade health and safety representative, brigade officer's secretary and brigade officer's chair.

Based on the March 2019 list, there are 54 members of staff who are elected FBU representatives. This is broken down as follows: 45 are employed on a full-time contract (i.e. wholetime firefighters and FTE), nine are on-call firefighters.

In addition to the FBU, we also have one elected representative from the Fire Officers’ Association (FOA) and three from the Fire and Rescue Service Association (FRSA).

This gives a total of 58 employees.

How many employees who were relevant union officials during the relevant period spent a)0%, b)1 – 50%, c) 51-99% or d) 100% of their working hours on facility time

The elected representatives spend significantly less than 50% of their working time on facility time.

This is true across all three unions (FBU, FOA, and FRSA).

Percentage of the total pay bill spent on facility time

Union officials and representatives perform their union roles by claiming overtime or time back, therefore it is impossible to estimate the total bill spent on facility time.  

Time spent on paid trade union activities as a percentage of total paid facility time hours

Union officials and representatives perform their union roles by claiming overtime or time back, therefore it is impossible to estimate the total bill spent on facility time.

Total pay bill

The total pay bill for Kent and Medway Fire and Rescue Authority amounts to £56,726,000.

Local Government Transparency Code 2015

Total number (absolute number and full-time equivalent) of staff who are union representatives (including general, learning and health and safety representatives) 

Based on the March 2019 list, there are 54 members of staff who are elected Fire Brigades Union (FBU) representatives. This is broken down as follows: 45 are employed on a full-time contract (i.e. wholetime firefighters and FTE), 9 are on-call firefighters.

In addition to the FBU, we also have one elected representative from the Fire Officers’ Association (FOA) and three from the Fire and Rescue Service Association ( FRSA). 

This gives a total of 58 employees.

Total number (absolute number and full-time equivalent) of union representatives who devote at least 50 percent of their time to union duties 

The elected representatives spend significantly less than 50% of their working time on facility time.

This is true across all three unions (FBU, FOA, and FRSA).

Names of all trade unions represented in the local authority 

  • Fire Brigades Union (FBU)
  • Fire Officers Association (FOA)
  • Fire and Rescue Service Association (FRSA)

A basic estimate of spending on unions (calculated as the number of full-time equivalent days spent on union duties multiplied by the average salary), and 

Union officials and representatives perform their union roles by claiming overtime or time back, therefore it is impossible to estimate the total bill spent on facility time.  

A basic estimate of spending on unions as a percentage of the total pay bill (calculated as the number of full-time equivalent days spent on union duties multiplied by the average salary divided by the total pay bill).

Union officials and representatives perform their union roles by claiming overtime or time back, therefore it is impossible to estimate the total bill spent on facility time.

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