Johannesburg - Trade union Solidarity on Monday accused Standard Bank
Group [JSE:SBK] of giving its retrenched staff "an arrogant slap in the
face" in spite of their loyal service to the bank.
follows the bank's refusal to consult with trade unions on employees'
severance packages, and also its disregard of several demands by
Solidarity, it said.
Although Solidarity and Standard Bank have
agreed on the substance of the retrenchments, the trade union is not
satisfied with the severance packages offered, it said.
Solidarity's demands was for the bank to extend its offer of free
banking services from three to 18 months. The bank responded last week,
saying that the extension will not be granted, the union said.
bank's decision to not extend the benefit of free banking services is
extremely foolish," Solidarity spokesperson Marius Croucamp said.
bank will save around R770m in salaries through the retrenchments, but
now runs the risk of losing numerous clients in the process. Standard
Bank's attitude towards these employees is extremely arrogant and is not
aimed at ending the relationship on good terms."
Solidarity has, in the meantime, started to disseminate its research on bank charges to members affected by the retrenchments.
"Solidarity provides this information to members to help them make an informed decision about their bank."
from demanding free banking services, Solidarity also demanded, among
other things, that 50% of employees' incentive bonuses be paid out
instead of the 25% offered.
The union demanded that the
retrenchments be postponed by two months and that employees' services be
terminated on March 31 2011. In response to these demands, the bank
indicated that the bonus will not be increased and that the
retrenchments will not be postponed.
The bank has, however, agreed to involve the department of labour in handling employees' unemployment insurance claims.
the bank indicated that the trade union's proposals will be taken into
consideration for its social plan and implemented at its discretion.
said it had succeeded in minimising the retrenchment of its members.
Nearly 30% of those affected by the process have already been placed in
new positions, the union said.