CPI (DS Smith and Saica) Noticeboard


Date: 22/12/2020


“Existing measures (e.g. social distancing, ventilation, hand hygiene and mask usage) remain important, but given the increase in risk associated with the new variant, strengthening the measures taken may be needed” 

This means that: 

  • Risk assessments need to be reviewed and revised – the risk has increased (as virus is more infectious), so the full set of measures now need to be implemented to the fullest. 
  • The risk assessment will look similar – risk ratings should be higher numbers; colours switch from yellow/orange to red; list of measures should be longer and more detailed. 

Many essential workplaces will have these in place but to remind everyone, in particular those measures in bold which are likely to be more relevant to factories. 

Measures 1 

  • Every worker who can work from home must do so 
  • All Clinically Extremely Vulnerable (Shielding) workers must remain at home 
  • Standards of ventilation should be the highest achievable as per HSE/CIBSE/REHVA requirements 
  • Social distancing must be rigorously adhered to in all areas including communal areas, common parts and canteens. 

Measures 2 

  • Welfare facilities must be provided to ensure that hand washing can be maintained. 
  • Hygiene standards must be the highest achievable in terms of cleanliness and frequency of cleaning 
  • Teams should be organised into the smallest units possible to minimise cross-exposure. Workers should remain in these teams with no intermingling as far as possible. 
  • Working patterns should be organised to minimise numbers in the workplace to fewest needed at any given time. 

Measure 3 

  • All requirements for PPE and face coverings must be met in full, with access to supplies as needed. 
  • Every worker who is in a group identified at being at higher risk from Covid-19 (older workers; pregnant workers; BAME workers; disabled workers; workers with underlying health conditions) should be individually assessed and suitable additional measures implemented. 
  • All workers who are required to self-isolate must be able to do so without fear of any detriment – loss of pay; loss of holiday; disciplinary action. 


  • Workplace Inspections, floor walks etc., daily if possible 
  • Daily H&S Meetings on performance and local infection rates 
  • Full Consultation on all Covid matters 
  • Facility Time/Time Off with Pay for these activities. 
  • Effective communication will be key to managing this period of high risk, and consultation structures will help to aid this.  

Eamon O'Hearn

GMB National Officer


Previous Bulletins

2020 Bulletins

Date: 06/10/2020

Dear GMB Member,

We hope that you, friends and family are all keeping safe and well. Thank you for continuing to work through the pandemic and lockdown, your commitment as essential workers has been remarkable and we believe this deserves recognition.


This year’s pay talks have been a car crash, with the employers originally unable to agree a common position following the original 1% offer which was resoundingly rejected by Joint Union members.

However since then the CPI (DS Smith and Saica) have made a full and final offer, of 1.5%, though this is subject to a recommendation from both Unions, representing the best offer that can be achieved through ‘negotiation’.


Your GMB Reps know that members were not happy with the original offer of 1%, and many consider 1.5% to be a very low pay offer, particularly when feedback is that almost every site is performing well, with high production levels and in some cases record output, which is a testament to the work of members.

In the normal course of pay talks we would have some indication of industry performance but this year we have to take the employers word that they can’t afford anything greater than 1.5%, and your Reps believe members deserve greater recognition.

However Reps are also aware that many members will have family and friends affected by the wider economic fluctuations, possibly having been furloughed or lost their jobs. There are many companies struggling in the community and some may not recover, and there are others like Amazon, Morrisons and Hermes hiring thousands of new staff and making record profits.

The 1.5% is the best that can be achieved by negotiation but your Reps believe that members need to be asked whether they want to pursue a better outcome via potential industrial action.

GMB Reps understand this may be a difficult choice for some members, but we are committed to fully supporting members whatever the result. We believe that in the current circumstances members need to be able to consider all their options.

Before your Reps can consider proceeding down this path, GMB members will need to deliver a Yes vote at all GMB sites covered by the CPI National Agreement.

To be absolutely clear at least 70% of GMB members at all GMB sites need to vote Yes by over 70% – this is crucial because GMB members need to be united on this potential course of action.

Eamon O'Hearn

GMB National Officer


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