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OCC-HEALTH  September 2009

OCC-HEALTH September 2009

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Subject:

Re: Union Advice

From:

"Huguenel, Tracy" <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Occupational Health mailing list <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Tue, 1 Sep 2009 16:12:54 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (210 lines)

Dear All,
Thank you for the replies to this one, it is one of those slightly grey
areas. I would always document the advice I have given, and put this in
the report to the manager if relevant. 
I thought the point made about transparency was excellent, in the NHS
the unions have a large involvement in many issues and areas, and staff
are encouraged to use this resource.
I think that it has to be based on each case, and any guidelines to be
used as a marker for good practice, subject to the case. 
We have a number of staff in our department who are either new to OH or
new to NHS OH, and a lot of input with their case management is needed.

Thank you all again.
Kind regards


Tracy

Tracy Huguenel, RGN, SCPHN (OH)
Deputy Head of Occupational Health 
0845 155 3111 Ext 3982 / 3591
Fax 01268 534127


-----Original Message-----
From: [log in to unmask] [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
Behalf Of Stephanie McGauley
Sent: 29 August 2009 19:27
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [OCC-HEALTH] Union Advice

i agree with Jane I never advise to see unions for the same reasons to
remain impartial but will ask if they have sought advice to assist
moving forward a situation such as mediation

regards

steph
On 29 Aug 2009, at 08:36, JANE COOMBS wrote:

> Hi All
>
> Just to put the cat amongst the pigeons.....!
>
> I don't think it particularly helpful to either the individual, the 
> company or managment to suggest that employees go to their unions for 
> advice - it can provoke conflict which doesn't help, plus the employee

> often goes around saying 'Occupational Health said I should talk to 
> the union'.  But if we do make the suggestion then I believe we should

> be transparent in our reporting back to management - the same as we 
> would with any other work advice we give.
>
> I used to work in a place where some of the Occ Health Advisers 
> suggested that employees took out a grievance if they didn't resolve 
> stress/management issues with the Manager and, to me, this is a 
> detrimental step, even though it is legitimate advice.  The company 
> had a culture of aggression and long term unresolved issues and high 
> absence - mainly because any type of consultation/ mediation into this

> sort of thing prolonged the situation which resulted in even worse 
> health affects such as anxiety/depression for the poor employee (let 
> alone the Managers involved).
>
> I think we, as Occupational Health Advisers, underestimate the power 
> we have when we make suggestions/offer diagnosis's and solutions.  In 
> most companies where I have worked - what is said by myself is taken 
> very literally and employees tend to trust what I say implicitly 
> (research supports this) - passing comments have often come back to 
> bite me on the bum.
>
> For those starting out in Occ Health -take my advice and think 
> carefully about advice you give and why you give it - you may have to 
> defend your stance in the future - not just to management/courts but 
> to the individual you are advising.
>
>
> Jane Coombs
> OH Manager
>
> Date: Thu, 27 Aug 2009 12:22:44 +0100
> From: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [OCC-HEALTH] Union Advice
> To: [log in to unmask]
>
> Dear all,
>
> I happily advise employees to contact their union for support when it 
> may be useful for them.  Within my own organisation, management, HR 
> and OH have good relationships with the unions and we find that it is 
> often mutually beneficial for employees to make their cases known to 
> the unions.  I do not usually document this in my report to the 
> manager though as it often has no direct relevance to my 
> recommendations to them.
>
> Paul
>
> Paul D'Arcy
> Clinical Nurse Leader
> Occupational Health
> Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust
>  2nd Floor Hammersmith House
> Hammersmith Hospital
> Du Cane Road
> London
> W12 0HS
>
>
>
> UK's first Academic Health Science Centre incorporating St Mary's and 
> Hammersmith Hospitals, in partnership with Imperial College London
>
>
> From: [log in to unmask] [mailto:[log in to unmask]]
> On Behalf Of Roberta Hanlon
> Sent: 27 August 2009 11:47
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Subject: Re: [OCC-HEALTH] Union Advice
>
> Yes.. I would advise them to consult with their union if I felt it was

> warranted. I would also document that I had done so.
>
> I'm not aware of any specific protocol for this but I have never had 
> any problems.
>
> Roberta
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: Huguenel, Tracy
> To: [log in to unmask]
> Sent: Thursday, August 27, 2009 11:40 AM
> Subject: [OCC-HEALTH] Union Advice
>
> Have an interesting one, if you saw a client who was having employment

> issues, would you advise them to seek input from their union?
> Would you document this is the report back to the manager, subject to 
> the case specifics?
> What is your departmental protocol on providing this advice?
> Many thanks,
> Tracy
> Tracy Huguenel, RGN, SCPHN (OH)
> Deputy Head of Occupational Health
> 0845 155 3111 Ext 3982 / 3591
> Fax 01268 534127
>
>
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