Cross branch working in increasingly diverse workplace environments

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2018 National LGBT Conference
27 July 2018

Conference cautiously welcomes developments and new ways of working that help to address service user and community needs negatively impacted by savage Tory central government cuts. For instance, Adult Social Care and Health Professional services are increasingly working together to provide enhanced clinical and social care rehabilitation pathways, helping people who require short periods of intensive support in a 24-hour setting reduce the time they spend in hospital settings and prevent failed discharges. These services also help reduce the pressure on hospitals created by delayed transfers of care, sometimes regrettably known as bed-blocking, simply because a patient is not yet well enough to return home. However, conference recognises this reduced pressure is vastly overshadowed by Local Government and NHS funding cuts and the unsustainable strain on services these inflict.

Although this kind of joint working is beneficial to communities, service users and patients, and is long overdue, it sometimes presents difficulties for employees due to differing employer practices operating in the same workplace. This results in different, and sometimes unfair, treatment of employees within the same workplace, simply because they work for different employers. Although this is nothing particularly new, with numerous workplaces also accommodating private sector employers alongside their public-sector counterparts, conference believes this represents an opportunity to influence workplace rights due to the size and statutory nature of the employers involved.

Conference believes that by working across branches and service groups, in conjunction with other unions relevant to the varied professions involved in the provision of these services, such as the Chartered Society of Physiotherapy (CSP) and the British Dietetic Association (BDA), we can promote good practice, highlighting and negotiating around our model Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) policies, in order to bring about improvements in employer equality policies. Conference further believes this can influence the development and improvement of equality policies within these associated statutory employers and commissioned services, which will help to move forward workplace LGBT equality for all.

Conference therefore instructs the National LGBT Committee to:

1)Produce guidance on joint working and negotiating for workplace LGBT policies in multi-employer environments, highlighting the importance of encouraging employers to develop best practice

2)Work with the Service Groups and the National Executive Council to encourage cross branch working, and working with other relevant trade unions, on LGBT equality in multi-employer environments

3)Encourage branches to use our bargaining factsheets to seek to influence service commissioning so it includes equality requirements based on our model policies