TA Employer Notification ???

#1
I recall seeing this topic discussed some time ago, but was unable to find it .

Today I had a heated discussion with my unit about my failure to fill in a document called Certificate For Early Employer Notification on a Voluntary Basis.

I was more than a little taken aback - why does the MOD Need to Know my 'Line Managers' name and telephone number?

My unit threatened all sorts but could not anwser when I asked them where this thing was driven from and what was the legal authority.

- Is this really a 'legal' requirement of service? If so, is it MOD regulations or Parliamentry stuff i.e Legislation?

- Is this some mong from Sabres way of getting a mailing list together? ( BTW look at their website, the Morons have even got a Para with his beret on the wrong way !!! And these idiots represent us to our employers, no thanks. http://www.sabre.mod.uk/output/Page1.asp

- Does it pass the 'Need to Know' section of the Data Protection Act?

- If I give any information to a third party (like the MOD) without authorisation from my employer, I am liable to disciplinary action and if I don't , I face disciplinary action from the MOD.

- What right does the MOD have under contract Law to interfere with the employment contract I negotiated with my employer?
 
#2
You'll think I'm crazy, but phone up the Citizen's Advice Bureaux re. anything to do with employment law.

The only reason I suggest this is because Mrs. Veg needed to find out some information about her rights to maternity leave and part-time working. The CAB really were brilliant: if they don't know they will find someone who does. They have lawyers etc. who might be at least able to steer you in the right direction.

You'll often find your nearest bureaux at the local town hall, their website OTOH is here.

Good luck. I'm reasonably conversant with the Data Protection Act, however, and I think that the information the MoD has asked from you is probably reasonable from a legal POV. IIn a similar way that your civvie employer, for example, might be able with your consent to see your medical records if it was relevant to your employment.

V!
 
#3
Have just had a look at Sabre site. It says:

Now, when you join the VRF, or seek to re-engage, you must give permission for the MOD to write to your employer directly.

It sounds like there is no law, just MoD policy. However, if you still don't want to inform your employer when your 3 years is up, looks like you won't be able to reengage. (Do TA have any employment rights, or could a unit get rid of us if we decided to exercise a right not to inform?)

Must admit I don't like the idea of my unit contacting my line manager directly. I appreciate that my employer needs to know when I'm away on annual camp - like they need to know when I'm on leave - but what I'm doing, or where, isn't really their business - they just need to know I'm not around.
 
#4
Hootch said:
I was more than a little taken aback - why does the MOD Need to Know my 'Line Managers' name and telephone number?
Know what you mean, could be rewritten to mean 'can I phone your boss to ensure you'll loose your job'
 
#5
If you're in a large organisation then give them a central HR contact, apparently it's all I'm alowed to give out anyway as my line manager isn't paid to look after that side of things. Problem is that it takes about six months for anything to filter down from HR, if at all.
 
#6
Pork_Pie said:
Have just had a look at Sabre site. It says:

Now, when you join the VRF, or seek to re-engage, you must give permission for the MOD to write to your employer directly.

It sounds like there is no law, just MoD policy. However, if you still don't want to inform your employer when your 3 years is up, looks like you won't be able to reengage. (Do TA have any employment rights, or could a unit get rid of us if we decided to exercise a right not to inform?)

Must admit I don't like the idea of my unit contacting my line manager directly. I appreciate that my employer needs to know when I'm away on annual camp - like they need to know when I'm on leave - but what I'm doing, or where, isn't really their business - they just need to know I'm not around.
Porkpie, from your previous posts you said you were NRPS, surely the TM you work to is a regular and would notice you were not there?? :?: :evil:
 
#7
Hey Guys,

Understand the concerns about EN but my understanding is that SABRE won't use the info unless we agree that they can - apparently it's all to do with their job of providing help with employers for those who need it.

I've had a few dealings with them and they have been very helpful so don't write them off!
 

scaryspice

LE
Moderator
#8
#9
Sorry, didn't that form have "Voluntary" in the title ? To me that means you don't have to if you don't want to. Am I missing something ?
 
#10
O_O_T_S it was initially voluntary. It becomes compulsory for ORs when they next re-engage after 1 April 2004. As officers don't re-engage every three years there was a specified date after which you would be deemed to have accepted the terms unless you had specifically applied for a waiver. (can't remember when off the top of my head and don't want to guess :oops: )

It's not voluntary now, it's compulsory. No employer notification, no re-engagement. That's the theory - in practice I don't know if anyone's pushed it that far yet. Note the option to apply for a 12 month waiver. Anyone tried it yet?

Scary
 
#11
Conflict with an existing civilian employment contract does not provide grounds for a waiver from Employer Notification to be granted.

This is the bit that grips me. In other words, no matter what arrangement you have with your employer "we" will interfere with that relationship.

I am not convinced that this has any legal backup. If it is just another MOD regulation, I am unsure how robust it would be in an Employment Tribunal.

Can't remember my contract law that well but I would like to see the legal back up for the above statement.

This stuff is the thin edge of the wedge. Presented all friendly like " We are here to help you" - what happes if you wish to keep your service discrete?

What next ?Will the MOD write to all my mates and say " Don't invite Hootch for a beer on Tuesday nights cos he should be at Army and that would be really naughty"


 
#12
I think the MoD don't want soldiers who have to keep their service discreet - they want employers to know and be on board so they won't cause them problems when you get mobilised.

This may be true, however it does mean that a significant chunk of existing and potential soldiers are now effectively barred from serving. Those that are left will be more deployable, but I guess we need to wait and see whether that's enough.

Personally I can't see it being good for the TA - what employer is going to want someone with a second job that will take them away every 3 to 5 years ? Perhaps not a problem for the 18 year old who wants an op tour while they're young enough, but from most people's mid twenties onwards it will be an issue.
 

Bits

War Hero
#13
One_of_the_strange said:
what employer is going to want someone with a second job that will take them away every 3 to 5 years ?
Delete 'with a second job that will take them away', insert 'that might get pregnant'. Now re-read the sentence.

No employer in their right mind would dare discriminate against a woman who chose to take her legal right to maternity benefits, because all the necessary legislation is in place, and there is a massive legal precedent for challenges in Employment Tribunals.

SABRE and the MOD take note. If you are going to keep using us like this i.e. mobilisation every few years (and in principle those of us still serving are happy with this) we need proper legal protection. IT CAN BE DONE!!! Stop farting around and being touchy-feely and sort it out.
 
#14
Bits said:
One_of_the_strange said:
what employer is going to want someone with a second job that will take them away every 3 to 5 years ?
Delete 'with a second job that will take them away', insert 'that might get pregnant'. Now re-read the sentence.

No employer in their right mind would dare discriminate against a woman who chose to take her legal right to maternity benefits, because all the necessary legislation is in place, and there is a massive legal precedent.
Bits,

I disagree agree with your point. Whilst it would be good to hear, in chapter and verse from someone, conversant in "Equal Oportunities" legislation, on these comparable (?) situations.

There is no doubt that for small businesses maternity benefits can be a killer. Should the temporary replacement, herself, fall pregnant within her contracted period of employment she too is entitled to maternity benefit. (And her replacement & so on & so on).

For any business employing a serving TA soldier would seem like a safer bet than employing women of child bearing age or people under the age of 18 ( who require individual risk assessments for their job descriptions).

However this is obviously not the case, judging by other posts.

the_Bat
 

OldSnowy

LE
Moderator
Book Reviewer
#15
One_of_the_strange said:
I think the MoD don't want soldiers who have to keep their service discreet - they want employers to know and be on board so they won't cause them problems when you get mobilised.....

Personally I can't see it being good for the TA - what employer is going to want someone with a second job that will take them away every 3 to 5 years ? Perhaps not a problem for the 18 year old who wants an op tour while they're young enough, but from most people's mid twenties onwards it will be an issue.
On your last point, it raises again one that I have made already. What sort of Soldiers do they want to mobilise? I know this is a broad-brush statement (and if anyone in Wilton/Upavon has the Stats, I'd be most interested to see them!) but I am convinced that the Infantry, with their 'relatively' short training cycles, and generally younger and less skilled make-up, will be able to accept regular mobilisation much better than the Corps, who need people in general who are already trained when they join, and who are, also in general, much older.

Employers of skilled tradesmen (and in this I include professionals) will be much less likely to let them go at frequent intervals that other employers.

So, if you need frequent Coy sized Inf Groups, it's a possibility (and before the Inf attack me, I know it's not easy for you either). If you regularly need Field Hospitals, or Plant Troops, or Recovery Platoons, it's a very, very different story.

Also, strange that, just as we are tild that it has gone from 1 year in 3 to 1 year in 5, we are also warned off for a Mob to support Op Herrick - and almost everyone who gets mobilised will have to voluntarily waive their 1 in 3, let alone 1 in 5, rights!

Wait until the Mob for Afganistan gets confirmed, and then we'll see.....
 
#16
As a supportive employer I find it disgusting that the MOD is apparently unable to tell me how many of my employees are members of the Reserve Forces - they can't even tell me an absolute number, never mind the name. A bit embarrassing for me as an employer to have to tell SaBRE on their behalf.

The pregnant employee comparison is an excellent one - although not legislated in quite this way, we choose to take this model for the way in which we should treat mobilised employees. In one memorable case, we had a lad mobilised (along with a number of others who work for the company) for Telic 2. He had only been employed by us for 6 weeks when he received his brown envelope but we held his post and he received his annual wage increments despite being away for most of his first year in our employment.

I do, of course, recognise that my Board are unusually supportive of the Reserve Forces - not least in terms of the support they give me personally. I know that there are some "wrong uns" out there who we would need to be cautious about revealing soldier details to.

A question I have never been able to have answered through official channels:

We put individuals through a very thorough security screening process before we enlist them - Northern Irish connections tend to cause very significant delays in being issued with an Army Number. I would imagine Middle-Eastern or Asian connections would be the same. What security screening happens to an employer before we give him details of a soldier's membership of the TA? Can you imagine being employed (for example) by an Irish construction firm as a labourer - boss finds out you're in the TA and then says, "Abacus, would you go to this address - it's an old lady who needs ner driveway sorted." Should that be Little Red Riding Abacus?
 
#17
Carrots and sticks.

CARROT: Why not give employers who support reservists a break on their employer's NI contributions, which then passes to the MOD and is taken up from general taxation? It's an increase, but not a punitive one and it would make reservist employees less of a burden.

STICK: MOD creates a dedicated legal department that aggressively supports reservists from sharp practice and names and shames particularly bad employers. Would only work for the bigger employers, admittedly.

Lastly, better primary legislation needs to go through to support reservists.

A good message would be "Look, these guys are keeping the wolf of Conscription from the door for everybody else...support them or reap as you sow!"

V!
 
#18
Vegetius said:
Carrots and sticks.

CARROT: Why not give employers who support reservists a break on their employer's NI contributions, which then passes to the MOD and is taken up from general taxation? It's an increase, but not a punitive one and it would make reservist employees less of a burden.

STICK: MOD creates a dedicated legal department that aggressively supports reservists from sharp practice and names and shames particularly bad employers. Would only work for the bigger employers, admittedly.

Lastly, better primary legislation needs to go through to support reservists.

A good message would be "Look, these guys are keeping the wolf of Conscription from the door for everybody else...support them or reap as you sow!"

V!
The carrot idea has been floated before and the concensus from the employers was that the paperwork involved for a small business to back claim the NI contributions, let alone a tax break, would be counter-productive in terms of the time taken to file. It might well work for the larger employers - but it would appear that they are not really the ones with whom the bulk of issues lie.

'Glasgow-kiss'-wise; how soon would the profile of the VRF be raised if someone somewhere began talking earnestly about conscription for the wider population, and had the media clout to make it a story which wasn't simply mentioned once as a filler during the '60 second news' one Tuesday night in December?

The question really is: is Mr Blair more likely to scale back commitments or to activate conscription legislation? Hmm, now where are those votes...?
 
#19
At last years TASC, virtually every external "guest speaker" wrung their hands and asked the course for their solution to the "TA retention problem".

The course was virtually unanimous in responding that (a) stronger TA employee protection was needed (as per pregnent women, race, etc), (b) at least half-realistic employer incentives were needed (tax, NI, half-realistic compensation, etc), and (c) Govt should consider spending advertising money to raise TA status in society to something like that of US National Guard - ie strongly supported by the community and employers.

The "guest speakers" unanimously retorted that (a) no significant numbers of TA had lost jobs due to mobilised service, so (b) the current legislation is just fine, (c) you can't expect any extra money for employers/PR/whatever....


.....So there you have it: the decision-makers the whole way up the chain of command refuse to even recognise a problem, let alone do anything realistic about it. Give it a couple more Telic tours, and there'll be no more volunteer ethos....
 
#20
4(T) said:
The course was virtually unanimous in responding that (a) stronger TA employee protection was needed (as per pregnent women, race, etc), (b) at least half-realistic employer incentives were needed (tax, NI, half-realistic compensation, etc), and (c) Govt should consider spending advertising money to raise TA status in society to something like that of US National Guard - ie strongly supported by the community and employers.
And our survey said....

I know, lets invite all the employers to 10 Downing Street, that should keep them happy for another year or two, and we won't need to part with any cash.

My MD says if I ever rope him into something like that again, I can forget any more weekends off. Still, Tony got a nice picture of himself with one of "his" captains of industry, BA got a couple of ticket sales, the Savoy got a room hire and a few london taxi drivers got a decent tip from a Jock. :grin:
 
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