Businesses encouraged to treat workers fairly in extreme weather

extreme weather: snowbound cars

A new charter is encouraging employers to treat workers fairly and be mindful of their safety if they are unable to get to work during extreme weather.

Following the ‘Beast from the East‘ snow storm earlier this year, the Fair Work Charter for Severe Weather provides guiding principles to help employers prepare for similar circumstances in the future.

Developed jointly by the Scottish Government and the Scottish Trades Union Congress, it sets out fair work practices – including the recommendation that all employers have a severe weather policy.

Economy and Fair Work Secretary Derek Mackay said: “During the extreme weather last winter, most employers made sensible and responsible decisions regarding their workers. While many businesses faced challenges, we were encouraged by the flexibility provided to staff.

“However, not all employers had severe weather policies to ensure workers understood what is expected. This is why we have developed this charter, because fair work is good for workers, good for employers and good for Scotland.”

The SRC’s Director David Lonsdale commented: “Retailers are acutely aware of their responsibilities as employers and there is much in this that the industry will support. Most retailers have well-developed contingency plans in place to deal with disruptions and the truly appalling adverse weather conditions experienced earlier this year certainly put these plans to the test.”