As attendees to this week’s CIPD Scotland Annual Conference, we’re looking forward to hearing an update on the Fair Work Action Plan which was refreshed by the Scottish Government late last year.
The Fair Work Action Plan reviews Scotland’s labour market and seeks to promote equality, wellbeing, innovation and success.
It is important to note that employment law is currently a reserved matter, which means that the UK Government still retains the power to legislate in this field.
However, the Fair Work Action Plan highlights key areas focused on by the Scottish Government to tackle structure inequalities in the labour market. This includes working to address pay and employment gaps, particularly in relation to gender, disability and racialised minorities.
Employers in Scotland are being asked to adopt “fair work practices”, with there being resource and support to be offered by the Scottish Government to achieve this, including a centralised Fair Work resource, and good practice guidance in respect of the Equality Act 2010.
There is also promotion of the voluntary Real Living Wage, administered by the Living Wage Foundation. Employers are encouraged to pay a wage rate based on living costs, calculated on an annual basis. Currently, this is £10.90, as opposed to the statutory National Living Wage (to be increased to £10.42 from 1 April 2023).
Ultimately, the Scottish Government’s vision is that Scotland becomes a leading Fair Work Nation by 2025. Whilst it will not be able to influence that legislatively, the Action Plan (available here: https://www.gov.scot/publications/fair-work-action-plan-becoming-leading-fair-work-nation-2025/) sets out the steps that it proposes to take over the next two years to achieve this.
The Fair Work Action Plan is one of the topics of discussion at this year’s CIPD Scotland Conference on 30 March 2023 at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre.
Harper Macleod will be attending this year’s conference as exhibitors. Members of our employment team will be available at Stand 16 on the day of the conference to discuss any HR and employment-related matter, including steps that employers can take within the legislative framework in respect of tackling inequality and supporting workers.