Venue: Committee Room 2 and 3, Trafford Town Hall, Talbot Road, Stretford, M32 0TH.. View directions
Contact: Alexander Murray Democratic and Scrutiny Officer
To receive and if so determined, to approve as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting held on 12 December 2016.
That the Minutes of the meeting held on 12 December 2016 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.
To receive a report of the Acting Director of Human Resources.
The Interim Director of Human Resources (HR) presented feedback and an overview report regarding the staff consultation on the extension to the Councils mandatory unpaid leave policy. The report laid out the background and context of the policy. The Interim Director of HR explained that the unpaid leave policy had been due for review and the voluntary unpaid leave scheme had been run prior to the review. Due to the success of the voluntary scheme the council had been able to reduce the mandatory unpaid leave to 1.5 days. As of the meeting 605 (51%) of staff affected by the policy had signed up to it and the report detailed the process that would be followed if any staff members did not sign up by the deadline.
The Committee looked through the responses that had been received from staff during the Consultation. The Opposition Spokesperson raised concerned that making savings from staff wages may become business as usual rather than a temporary measure. The Chairman stated that whilst the policy had affected staff wages it also reduced the need for redundancies. The Interim Director of HR reminded the Councillors that this was still a temporary measure, that HR would continue to work on the voluntary scheme and the policy would be reviewed in a year’s time.
The Opposition Spokesperson noted that although there had only been a small number of responses they were very strong in their disagreement and mentioned a number of areas for concern including the impact the leave was having on the delivery of frontline services. The Director of Safeguarding and Professional Development assured the Committee that, despite the comments received in the consultation, no agency workers had been brought in to cover staff taking leave. Further the Interim Director of HR told the board that HR had continually monitored the levels of stress on services and no evidence had been found to suggest that there was an issue.
After all of the Councillors questions had been answered the Committee voted on the recommendations listed within the report and they were agreed.
1) That the responses from the recognised trade Unions and staff members are noted.
2) That the Proposal to reduce the mandatory unpaid leave provision from 3 days to 1.5 days per annum be approved by the Committee.
3) That the proposal to extend the 1.5 days mandatory unpaid leave arrangement for one further year, until 31st March 2018 be approved by the Committee.
4) That the Committee agreed to a review of the temporary arrangement towards the end of 2017.