Scottish council signs care charter

North Ayrshire becomes latest local authority to put its name to union’s Ethical Care Charter, committing itself to standards for home care services and working conditions

council and union representatives gather at desk and signing the charter

North Ayrshire council in Scotland has become the latest to sign up to UNISON’s Ethical Care Charter, committing it to high standards in home care for the vulnerable, and better conditions for homecare workers.

It is the third Scottish council, after Inverclyde and Renfrew, to sign up to the charter, which UNISON developed following concerns raised in its Time to Care report covering the whole UK.

This highlighted fears that poor terms and conditions for staff were leading to lower standards of care for the mostly elderly and vulnerable people who use homecare services.

“We are delighted that North Ayrshire council is one of the first in Scotland to adopt the charter,” said UNISON branch secretary Louise McDaid at the signing.

“It demonstrates our shared commitment to ensure improved quality of care for some of the most vulnerable people in North Ayrshire.”

The charter is part of the union’s campaign to improve social care across the board, for both care workers and service users.

It aims to make sure that care workers have the time they need with those they care for and are paid for their travel time and costs, and that people will see the same homecare worker for each visit, as far as possible.

It also encourages councils who commission or provide care to end zero-hour contracts and pay the living wage.