Winter update: policies in the Council and in Unite Scotland

It has been a busy few months, with the branch involved in

  • policy reviews with the Council
  • shaping Unite policy at the Scottish Policy Conference
  • scrutinising the Council’s recently released budget

as well as supporting members at work and through organisational reviews, with two underway in Early Years and Localities.

Policy reviews

We have been negotiating with HR to ensure our members’ voices are heard and needs are met in the revised

  • disciplinary policy
  • diversity and inclusion policy.

Discussions are still on-going for both as we work to make sure that, in disciplinary matters,

  • staff have a fair hearing and are treated as innocent until an investigation takes place to establish the facts
  • the Council considers conflicts of interest when appointing nominated and investigating officers, so that the procedure can be carried out without bias
  • timescales are kept to and agreed to avoid unnecessary stress and delay
  • precautionary suspension is used fairly.

On diversity and inclusion, we are keen to see the

  • a specific reporting mechanism for equalities incidents, one that don’t put the onus on the victim
  • facilities time for equalities reps, to allow them to deal with cases and help promote diversity in the workplace
  • the Council meet their requirements under equalities legislation to ensure staff can get the adjustments they need to work, including those that address issues around digital exclusion.

Contact your rep if you have any points you would like add or have any experiences to share in these areas.

Unite Scottish Policy Conference

At the end of October, reps for your branch joined Unite officials and reps from all over Scotland to decide upon Unite Scotland’s policies.

Through the various committees our reps sit on, they tabled motions on

  • improving access to free English as a second language classes, and other resources, for migrant workers
  • recording and monitoring of equalities incidents in workplaces
  • fighting back against the continued assault on local authorities

and we’re very glad that they all passed.

The event was a great opportunity for our branch to inform the union policy to strengthen the support Unite can provide on the issues that matter.

Read a report on the policy conference from Pat Rafferty, Unite Scottish Secretary.

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