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Agricultural Workers

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The Agricultural Wages Board has confirmed the new minimum wages rate for agriculturals workers at Grade 1 to 6 as detailed below.  These new rates will apply from 5 April 2010.

 

Rate per Hour

£

Grade 1 - Minimum rate applicable for the first 40 weeks cumulative employment

               5.90

Grade 2 - Standard Worker

               6.25

Grade 3 - Lead Worker

               6.86

Grade 4 - Craft Grade

               7.37

Grade 5 - Supervisory Grade

               7.81

Grade 6 - Farm Management Grade                8.44

 

Definitions for the new Grading System

Grade 1 - Minimum Rate

Any agricultural worker entering the industry for the first time on or after 2 April 2007 will earn the Minimum Rate.  Once the worker has worked for 40 weeks cumulative employment or has met the requirements in Section 5 then he/she must move to Grade 2.

There is no restriction on the type of work a Grade 1 worker can undertake as long as it does not involve activities to which Grade 2 applies.

 

Grade 2 - Standard Worker

A worker is a Standard Worker if he/she:

  • has completed 40 weeks cumulative employment;
    OR
  • holds one vocational qualification; or
  • holds at least one certificate of competence for the relevant agricultural sector and whose work requires to any extent, the use of the competence to which the certificate relates.  The relevant agricultural sector is the sector in which the worker is working at the time he/she becomes a Grade 2 worker in his/her current employment; and
  • has disclosed to his/her employer that he/she holds the minimum entry requirements for entry to Grade 2.
    OR
  • who in the course of his/her employment:
    - works wholly or mainly without their supervisor being present and supervising the work at the place where the worker carries out the work required under his or her contract of employment; or
    - works with animals; or
    - is in control of powered machinery; or
    - drives an agricultural tractor.

Grade 3 - Lead Worker

A worker is a Lead Worker if he/she:

  • holds at least one of the following Lead Worker minimum entry requirements:
    - one vocational qualification; or
    - 4 certificates of competence (including any mandatory competencies) specified for Grade 3 in the relevant agricultural sector. The relevant agricultural sector is the sector in which the worker is working at the time he/she becomes a Grade 3 worker in his/her current employment; and
  • has disclosed to his/her employer that he/she holds the minimum entry requirements for entry to Grade 3 and
  • has been working in agriculture for at least two out of the last five years (the work can have been undertaken in any part of the world and can include time under instruction or training, provided the worker was mainly undertaking practical agricultural work); the work can have been done at any time over the previous five years including any period before obtaining the Grade 3 minimum entry requirements specified in the above list; or
  • since first obtaining his/her Grade 3 minimum entry requirements specified in the above list, has been continuously employed for six months or more by the same employer.

Grade 4 - Craft Grade

A worker is in the Craft Grade if he/she:

  • holds at least one of the following Craft Grade minimum entry requirements:
    - a vocational qualification; or
    - 8 certificates of competence (including any mandatory competencies) specified for Grade 4 in the relevant agricultural sector.  One or more certificates of competence may be achieved by an equivalent qualification.  The relevant agricultural sector is the sector in which the worker is working at the time he/she becomes a Grade 4 worker in his/her current employment;
    and
  • has disclosed to his/her employer that he/she holds the minimum entry requirements for entry to Grade 4;
    and
  • has been working in agriculture for at least two out of the last five years (the work can have been undertaken in any part of the world and can include time under instruction or training, provided that the worker was mainly undertaking practical agricultural work); the work can have been done at any time over the previous five years including work done before obtaining the Grade 4 minimum entry requirements specified in the above list; or
  • since first obtaining his/her Grade 4 minimum entry requirements specified in the above list, has been continuously employed for twelve months or more by the same employer.
    and
  • is not excluded from the Craft Grade.

Other qualifications recognised for entry to the Craft Grade are:

  • a valid Craft Certificate issued before 1 June 1986 by an Agricultural Wages Committee.
  • a valid Proficiency Test Craft Certificate or Certificate of Qualification issued on or after 1 June 1986 by the National Proficiency Tests Council, confirming that the worker has passed the appropriate and required number of National Proficiency Tests Council activity tests or a National Vocational Qualification at level 3.
  • each category based proficiency test obtained by the worker within a particular craft is to be treated as equivalent to a certificate of competence within the corresponding relevant agricultural sector.
  • a valid certificate for a former Board apprentice issued by the Agricultural Training Board.
  • a valid Craft Certificate issued by an Agricultural Wages Committee on the basis of an employer’s declaration in respect of a worker employed in agriculture before 29 May 1972.

Workers excluded from the Craft Grade

A worker is excluded from Craft Grade when his/her:

  • qualifications or Craft Certificate relate solely to forestry crafts but where the worker is not working wholly or mainly at such crafts;
    or
  • qualifications or Craft Certificate do not relate to forestry when he/she is working in the production of timber or in the use of land as woodland unless such production or use is ancillary to the use of the land for other agricultural purposes;
    or
  • Craft Grade minimum entry requirements were obtained while working continuously for their current employer unless he/she is working wholly or mainly at the craft (see definition below) covered by the qualification.

 

When deciding if a worker is WORKING WHOLLY OR MAINLY AT A CRAFT the following apply:

  • the worker’s employment with their current employer must be considered as a whole;
  • the time working at a craft should include time when the worker is doing general work connected to the craft; and
  • any temporary change of work for 3 months or less should be ignored.

Grade 5 - Supervisory Grade

A worker is in the Supervisory Grade if he/she has:

  • day to day responsibility for supervising the work on a farm or part of it and implementing management decisions;
    (In effect a Grade 5 worker is responsible for seeing that the management decisions taken by the farmer or a Grade 6 worker are implemented.  He/she is likely to be able to take certain operational decisions independently but not those relating to the overall management of the farm).
    or
  • responsibility for the instruction and supervision of staff.

Grade 6 - Farm Management Grade

A worker is in the Farm Management Grade if he/she has:

  • anagement responsibility for an entire farm or part of it run as a separate operation or business
    or
  • responsibility for employing and disciplining staff together with responsibility for dismissing staff or, where appropriate, responsibility for making recommendations to their employer for the dismissal of staff they manage directly.

 

 

 

 
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