10 signatures reached
To: Aberdeen City Council
Show dignity of labour for Agency workers
We need more changes in Agency workers regulations.
A written termination of employment from HR should be promoted for council and government employees who are agency workers. A verbal termination by senior employees of the department the agency worker is employed should be discouraged.
Why is this important?
The Agency Workers Regulations (AWR), which came into force in October 2011, gives agency workers the right to ‘equal treatment’ with the same pay and other basic working conditions as equivalent permanent staff, but this doesn't prevent harrassment, bullying or discrimination. It is because the law that allows verbal termination of employment for agency workers makes them vulnerable to abuse at work place.
Full details of the Regulations can be found at https://www.gov.uk/agency-workers-your-rights/your-rights-as-a-temporary-agency-worker
The verbal termination of employment gives too much power in the perpetuators of these crimes who are most often the reporting officer or immediate senior employee. We need to prevent it happening in the workplaces and make sure that the employer fulfills duty of care towards an agency worker from day one to the last day. This would happen only if the agency worker is made aware of their rights from day one. That's why we need:
a) Induction from the employer and not just the agency
b) Written Termination letter from HR
A verbal termination of employment doesn't respect dignity of labour and can be unprofessional. A written letter of termination gives an agency worker a dignified exit and a fair opportunity to address grievances, if any.
It also encourages senior employees to follow procedures with regard to termination of employment of agency workers, instead of acting on a whim.
A written 'employment termination letter' from HR could also be used as a reference by the agency worker for future employments. This would also help the agency worker to feel like a valuable part of the work force, who is respected for their contribution to the workforce instead of being written off as a disposable replacement worker.
Also, If all the the councils and government bodies set an example by changing the way they deal with Agency workers, others may follow.