Following consultation, the Branch Committee has agreed to a new Sickness Absence policy in the City of Edinburgh Council after improvements gained through negotiations. Click here for a detailed briefing from negotiators (pdf) and here for a brief summary of the improvements.
The feedback from most meetings conducted by stewards across the council and through website feedback was that, while members remained unhappy about the new policy, they welcomed the improvements gained through negotiation and there was no appetite for industrial action.
As in any negotiation, branch officers had warned that rejection of the improved deal would have meant a return to the original policy put forward by the council in January 2012 without the improvements. The council had already withdrawn from the previous agreement before January 2012 and so that no longer existed.
The lead negotiators pledged to monitor the new policy, with further talks on implementation, and to ensure it is applied sensitively and fairly. Because it is a collective agreement, either side can serve notice to withdraw from it if need be.
The full new policy will be published on the council intranet.