Section 26: Joint consultation machinery

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26.1 Joint consultation arrangements should be set up, in agreement with employee representatives, to lay down the rules and procedures which will govern the operation of a joint consultative committee (JCC).

26.2 Joint consultative arrangements should be based on a partnership approach to industrial relations. This should involve the systematic and routine involvement of staff and their trades union representatives at all levels in shaping the service and in the decision making process at all stages which affects their working lives and the delivery of healthcare.

26.3 Agreement should be reached on a number of issues when establishing a JCC. These include:

  • size and composition of the committee;
  • organisation of committee meetings;
  • subjects to discuss;
  • facilities for committee members; and
  • arrangements for reporting back.
26.4 All organisations benefit from good employer/employee consultation. Organisations which ensure that systematic communication and consultation take place on a wide range of subjects will benefit from better decision making, greater employee understanding and commitment and improved industrial relations.

26.5 Further guidance on the setting up of a JCC as well as a checklist of issues to be covered in a JCC constitution is contained in the ACAS booklet, Employee communications and consultation.

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