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Vodafone UK has been forced to recognise the Connect union, the Central Arbitration Committee has ruled.

The union must now be consulted about changes in pay, hours, and holiday.

Connect started negotiating with Vodafone in November last year, and despite trying employment resolution service ACAS, ended up taking Vodafone to the Central Arbitration Committee in March, which led to today's ruling.

The staff involved are responsible for maintaining Vodafone's network infrastructure in the midlands and parts of the north of England, including Northern Ireland, though they are nominally based in Warrington. More than half are already members of Connect, which enabled the union to call in the committee.

Connect has now launched a similar claim to cover workers maintaining the network in the south of England.

Perhaps this time Vodafone won't wait for a legal mandate on union recognition. Vodafone was unavailable for comment. ®

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