The Great Jobs Agenda offering a new deal for workers

Motion before Cabinet calls on employers and government to make every job a great job

Date issued: 25 January 2019

Cabinet members are to consider giving every worker the opportunity to progress, following a motion that could see Colchester Borough Council implement the TUC’s Great Jobs Agenda.

The motion proposed by Deputy Leader Cllr Tim Young, to be discussed on the 30 January, calls on the council to support the Great Jobs Agenda, which sets out the actions employers and the government must take for every job to be a great job.

Dubbed ‘a new deal for working people’, the Great Jobs Agenda establishes six standards to enable workers to flourish. These include ensuring workers:

  • are paid fairly;
  • work in a safe and healthy workplace;
  • are treated decently;
  • have guaranteed hours;
  • can be represented by unions and have a strong independent voice on what matters in the workplace, and
  • get the chance to progress at work and get on in life

The motion before Cabinet emphasises the council’s own duties, obligations and responsibilities to help improve the working lives of its employees, as well as encouraging other employers in the borough to do the same.

As well as throwing its weight behind the TUC’s campaign, additional measures listed in the motion ask the council to:

  • continue providing great jobs for its employees, as well as the support and opportunities necessary for their personal development;
  • continue to value meaningful workforce engagement and representation through recognised trade unions;
  • continue to work with employers in the borough to influence their employment practices and to ensure that business growth is sustainable and ethical;
  • make increasing job quality a key part of the conversation when pursuing local economic development opportunities in the borough;
  • use its commissioning and procurement processes, where possible, to raise employment standards among its suppliers and providers;
  • engage with government and other bodies who hold regulatory powers, where appropriate, to tackle issues which local authorities do not have statutory powers to address directly, and
  • write to the borough’s MPs informing them of the council’s position and encouraging them to support the Great Jobs Agenda too.

Councillor Tim Young said: “After nearly a decade of austerity in which we have seen the insidious erosion of workers’ rights, an enormous increase in zero-hours contracts and prolonged uncertainty over Brexit, we need a new deal for working people, so every job is a great job.

“The Great Jobs Agenda reminds us that while there may be record employment, the quality of jobs hasn’t always kept pace with the quantity. That situation needs to change. This motion, if agreed, will be one step toward redressing the balance and obtaining a better deal for workers across our borough and beyond.

“We can be proud of the progressive and caring values that underpin our community and make Colchester a place worth living and working in. Supporting the Great Jobs Agenda is the perfect opportunity for us to do the right thing and continue to align our actions with those principles.”

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