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Lloyds agrees to let PDA negotiate pharmacists’ pay and conditions

Lloydspharmacy and the PDA have signed a voluntary recognition agreement to let the union negotiate pay and “certain terms and conditions”.

The Pharmacists' Defence Association (PDA) Union has now powers to negotiate the pay of around 2,600 pharmacists working for the multiple, with the first pay negotiations scheduled to begin later this year “in time for the 2022 pay review”, the PDA said in a statement today (February 8).

Through the PDA Union, Lloydspharmacy pharmacists will be able to negotiate over “certain terms and conditions and be consulted on matters that impact on their employment”, according to the statement.

Under the agreement, some pharmacists employed by Lloydspharmacy will be trained to become PDA Union representatives and negotiators, the PDA said.

Lloydspharmacy is expected to consult and inform the PDA Union representatives of “significant challenges and opportunities faced by the business”, while the representatives will be trusted to “represent and support colleagues in employment matters”.

New forums

The PDA Union and the multiple agreed to set up a “pharmacist joint consultation committee” through which the PDA Union representatives “will meet with senior management representatives for collective consultation and information sharing about matters impacting pharmacist colleagues,” according to a joint statement on the agreement. The document was signed by Jane Davies, McKesson UK – Lloydspharmacy’s parent company – chief people officer and PDA Union director Paul Day last week (February 5).

A different working group – the pharmacist joint negotiating committee – “will also be established as the forum for annual pay negotiations”, which both parties agreed will start “in time for the 2022 pay review”.

Commenting on the announcement, McKesson UK head of HR operations Johnny Dowd said the multiple had asked its employees their views on working with the PDA in this way, and had "listened" to their "clear support" to go ahead with the relationship.

He said the company’s aim is to provide its pharmacists “with a rewarding career in which they feel valued and able to achieve their professional and personal goals”.

“We believe that the PDA can help us achieve that ambition and we are looking forward to working closely with them going forward,” he added.

PDA Union director Paul Day said: “Lloydspharmacy is a major employer of UK pharmacists and we are delighted that we have reached this outcome through a series of mutually respectful discussions focused on how we can jointly improve the experience of pharmacists at work.”

The PDA Union formally applied to the Central Arbitration Committee in July last year to act on behalf of pharmacists at Lloydspharmacy, after an initial letter to the multiple in February and a series of discussions between the company and the union about the possibility of recognition.

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