Diocese of Leicester Agrees Voluntary Union Recognition With Unite the Union

Bishop’s Council have approved a voluntary union recognition agreement between the Diocesan Board of Finance, Leicester Cathedral, and the Bishop of Leicester and the Church of England Clergy and Employee Advocates (CEECA), part of the Faith Workers’ Branch of Unite the Union, following an approach from the Union, making the diocese the first in the country to do so.

The Agreement means that the Diocese recognises the importance of trade union representation for healthy employment relations; the Union’s responsibility to represent its members interests; and the importance of good practice in matters of employment and office-holding. It also commits the diocese to consulting with the union on matters of interest to clergy and staff in relation to their employment or (if office-holders) engagement (such as pay, health and safety, and equal opportunities), and to further developing wellbeing, diversity, equity and inclusion, and anti-harassment policies and procedures for clergy, staff and applicants.

The Rt Revd Martyn Snow, Bishop of Leicester, said, “I hope the agreement serves as a reflection of our close working as a diocese with CEECA over recent years and our commitment to supporting the wellbeing of our clergy, authorised lay ministers, and staff.”

The Agreement covers all clergy holding the Bishop’s licence for ministry in the diocese, and all staff employed directly by the Bishop’s office, the Cathedral or the DBF. Employees of Parochial Church Councils (PCCs) do not fall within the scope of this agreement as each PCC is a separate charity in its own right.

The agreement does not bind any employee or member of clergy to become a member of the union and neither does it prevent those who may already be members of other unions from calling on their own union representatives to represent them in any future HR processes.

First published on: 26th April 2024
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