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Jubilee holiday row

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By Marc Mclean, Local Democracy Reporter
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Jubilee holiday row

A UNION boss has demanded that Dumfries and Galloway Council pay all staff for the extra day off in celebration of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.

J’an Andrews, secretary of Unison’s Dumfries and Galloway branch, is furious over the apparent unfair treatment being meted out to part-time workers.

This comes after the local authority stated that part-time staff won’t get the extra day’s holiday if they are not scheduled to work on that particular day, Friday 3 June, 2022.

J’an said: “We are obviously pleased that most council workers will get an extra day off on Friday, June 3.

“But what about the part-time workers or others with irregular working patterns who are not rostered to work on the Friday?

“They should obviously get the same time off as everyone else, with the part-timer workers getting the time off on a pro-rata basis – but I’m not sure that is the case.

“It’s my understanding the council are saying that part-time employers will be entitled to this extra leave on a proportional basis if they are scheduled to work on that day.

“That is clearly unfair and means part-time workers would be treated less favourably. And of course the majority of part-time workers are women so they will be disproportionally affected.

“Everyone should get the time off on a proportionate basis, not just those who are scheduled to work the Friday.”

A council spokesman said: “At its meeting of March 31, 2022, the council agreed to grant a one-off additional day of fixed leave for staff on Friday, June 3, 2022 to mark Her Majesty the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. This includes all schools in Dumfries and Galloway.

“Cover arrangements for essential services will need to maintained and anyone required to work on June 3 will receive an additional day of leave, which can be taken instead at any time during the current leave year.

“Legislation ensures that part-time employees are not treated less favourably than full-time colleagues and will be entitled to this extra leave on a proportional basis if they are scheduled to work on that day.

“Council policy states that employees are not entitled to recompense if absent due to sickness on a fixed or public holiday, however, those on maternity leave will be entitled to accrue this day.

“Due to the way annual leave and public holidays are described in the Single Status Collective Agreement, staff will be contractually entitled to an additional leave day.”

The Unison branch secretary is now writing to the council to demand an explanation for this “apparent discrimination” of part-time workers.

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