The Boots ballot opens officially today. Although colleagues won’t get their ballot papers for at least 10 days as Boots refused the request from the PDAU arguing that changing the date might cause confusion, there’s still time to do your research and decide whether you want to vote in favour of recognition of the PDAU. This is the third article in a series updating pharmacists about the ballot.  In this article, common questions are answered:

 

What are level 5,6 and 7 pharmacists/pre-regs in boots?

These are mainly Boots in-store pharmacists.  But if you’re unsure what level you are, check with your manager.

 

Once the ballot closes in March when are the results announced?

The qualified independent person (QIP) has to notify the Central Arbitration Committee of the result by end of business on Monday 11 March, so the result would be expected shortly after that.

 

Is there any activity not allowed during these ballots?

The ballot period started on the 2nd of February and there are restrictions on what can be done or said, these are known as “unfair practices”. For example, making an outcome-specific offer to a worker entitled to vote in the ballot. The PDAU would want to hear from any eligible pharmacists who feel they may be subject to such practices. [NB: The PDAU £1 charity donation for each vote cast, is not outcome-specific and so is allowed, they’re even giving to charity for people that vote against them because they want maximum participation]

 

Why would anyone not vote the PDAU based on the history of how boots treat staff?

The biggest hurdle is getting the message across. Lots of pharmacists haven’t had the opportunity the look into it and so will just vote in favour of their employer. Its important to note that neither the PDAU or Boots will know how you voted individually. Look at the first article for reasons to vote for recognition of the PDAU.

 

40% turnout needed. How many people does this mean?

The PDAU need to win a majority AND for that majority to be 40% or more of those eligible to vote.  There are approximately 7,000 pharmacists eligible to vote, and 40% is about 2,800.

For example, if 3000 voted YES, and 2000 voted NO, that would be a win for the PDAU, but if 2500 voted YES, and 200 voted NO, that would not be a win for the PDAU because 2,500 votes wouldn’t be 40% of the total eligible to vote.

The result last time was 2826 YES and that equalled 41%, so every vote does count

 

When can I expect my ballot card?

Ballot papers will be sent to home addresses by post on Monday 18 February.

 

What if I don’t get a ballot card?

If you think you’re eligible to vote and haven’t received a ballot paper by 22 February 2019, or if you do not think that you are eligible to vote, but receive a ballot paper, you need to contact the Case Manager, Linda Lehan, by email at llehan@cac.gov.uk. Be sure to give your full name and address.  If you have recently changed your address and you have not informed your employer you should do so as soon as possible to ensure you receive your ballot paper on time.

 

Wajeeha Mir MPharm

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