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We are committed to advancing the Fair Work First criteria.

In this connection, we are an accredited Real Living Wage employer and confirm appropriate channels for Effective Voice channels, both on an individual and collective basis.

Effective employee voice

We have an appropriate channel for effective employee voice:

  • we involve our recognised Trade Unions in key governance and decision-making structures - monthly collective bargaining meetings are held with representatives of all local government Trade Unions to discuss key employee issues
  • Joint Consultative Committees are regularly held at:
    • third tier within services
    • second tier within service groupings
    • first tier with elected members
  • we encourage Trade Union membership and this is highlighted in our induction information to new employees and invites are extended to Trade Union representatives to attend face-to-face Meet and Greet sessions
  • we provide facility time to support regular engagement between our Trade Unions and their members
  • we make available to Trade Union representatives, wherever possible, reasonable facilities necessary for them to carry out their duties efficiently and communicate effectively with their members
  • we engage in constructive dialogue with our employees and their Trade Union representatives to address workplace issues and disputes
  • employees are offered supportive contact with their supervisor or line manager, with face-to-face individual and team meetings taking place on a regular basis wherever feasible
  • we have measures in place to support employees in the workplace and have zero tolerance of bullying and other forms of abuse and harassment and, in recognising this commitment, we have obtained Equally Safe at Work Bronze accreditation

Workforce development

We invest in workforce development:

  • our Workforce Strategy aims for an engaged and empowered workforce who embrace new ways of working and are committed to making a difference
  • our Code of Conduct sets out how all employees are expected to behave at work, creating a better working environment for all
  • we are committed to providing apprenticeships and other opportunities for young people through our £6million investment from our Jobs and Training Fund
  • we provide learning opportunities for employees at all levels in the Council with employee FACE (Flexible, Approachable, Caring and Empowered) Time sessions being held annually with managers which include career conversations and discussion on development needs and objectives
  • formal and informal learning is offered and encouraged across the workforce, relating to specific roles as well as wider development
  • we provide training for employees to become Mental Health First Aiders or ASIST Suicide Prevention First Aiders who volunteer to offer support to other employees in times of vulnerability
  • we issue surveys to employees on relevant employment matters to inform policy development as well as a full Workforce Survey, the most recent being conducted in Autumn 2023

Zero-hours contracts

We do not use zero-hours contracts inappropriately:

  • bank registers and supply or casual workers are only used when necessary and there is no obligation for workers to accept work when this is offered
  • we proactively look to reduce our numbers of temporary employees and bank workers to ensure that employees have the stability of substantive contracts where at all possible.
  • our policy is that any longer term vacancies will be covered by a temporary contract and not the use of bank registers

Gender pay gap

We take action to tackle the gender pay gap and create a more diverse and inclusive workplace:

  • our equality outcomes support a number of actions to ensure we continue to understand any perceived barriers to employment with the Council and address these
  • we gather data to understand our workforce diversity and pay gap information
  • we support flexible working across the Council, offering a wide range of flexible working patterns and options
  • we have flexible workstyles for office-based employees which offers the opportunity to have a blended model of working from Council buildings and from home
  • we are a Carer Positive employer showing our commitment to a working environment where carers are valued and supported
  • we recognise our role as a Corporate Parent and support Care Experienced Young people into employment with our Positive Recruitment Policy
  • we are a signatory to the Armed Force Covenant and support opportunities for serving members of the armed forces and veterans
  • we have received recognition for our commitment to supporting our armed forces community, the Ministry of Defence’s Employer Defence Recognition Scheme Silver Award
  • we are a Disability Confident employer, encouraging the employment and retention of disabled people and those with health conditions
  • we took the Pregnancy Loss Pledge and offered Parental Bereavement Leave, committing to support employees through miscarriage at any stage of gestation

Flexible and family-friendly working practices

We offer flexible and family-friendly working practices for employees, including:

  • part-time, term-time and variable working arrangements
  • carers’ leave policy
  • job-share policy
  • deployment and career pathways policy
  • time off for dependants
  • parental leave
  • neonatal leave
  • parental bereavement leave (including those who have a miscarriage and partners)
  • career break
  • compassionate and other special leave
  • time off for voluntary and other public duties
  • time off for Reservists and Special Constables

Fire and rehire practices

We oppose the use of fire and rehire practice:

  • we only consider effecting change where there is a legitimate business need
  • we strive to achieve change through agreement
  • we are committed to working with our Trade Unions partners to ensure there is effective consultation and negotiation relating to change

Procurement contracts and grant award processes

The Fair Work First criteria are also referenced in our procurement contracts and grant award processes, to encourage third-party providers to adopt positive fair work practices. Where relevant and proportionate to do so, this may factor into the tender evaluation process and is subject to monitoring through contract management/service level agreements.

This commitment will be updated and reviewed on an annual basis.

The Trade Unions can reserve the right to withdraw from their agreement to this statement at any time.

Signed on behalf of East Ayrshire Council

Signature of Amanda Lowe, Head of People and Culture

Amanda Lowe
Head of People and Culture
26 January 2024

Signed on behalf of Trade Unions

Signature of Siobhan McCready, Unite the Union

Siobhan McCready
Regional Officer, Unite the Union
30 January 2024

Signature of Keir Greenaway, GMB ScotlandKeir Greenaway
Senior Organiser for Public Services, GMB Scotland
31 January 2024 

Signature of Simon Macfarlane, UNISON Scotland

Simon Macfarlane
Regional Manager, UNISON Scotland
6 June 2024

Contact Information


Human Resources
Council Headquarters
London Road