Date lodged: 11 October 2016
To ask the Scottish Government how it encourages local authorities to end the use of zero-hour contracts.
Answered by: Keith Brown 26 October 2016
The Scottish Government promotes the benefits of Fair Work. While employment law remains reserved to the UK Government, the Scottish Government is doing everything it can to promote good working practices with the powers available to us. This includes publishing Statutory Guidance Addressing Fair Work Practices. This guidance makes it clear that a positive approach to fair work practices can have an impact on the quality of services, goods and works.
Public bodies must now consider, before undertaking a procurement exercise, whether it can include a question on fair work practices, including the inappropriate use of zero hours contracts as part of the competition. Local authorities are independent corporate bodies whose powers are set out in statute. As long as they act lawfully, it is up to each local authority how it manages its day to day business and decision making processes.