Over some time, this branch of UNISON (as well as nationally) has been working hard to try and ensure some basic standards of employment are agreed by outside providers of home care to service users in the community and are being written into employment contracts.
This is in accordance with the national union’s Ethical Care Charter campaign.
We are very pleased to announce that the new Home Care contract drawn up by Brighton & Hove City Council, due to commence in September 2016, will include the following for the first time:
Home Carers will be paid the Living Wage of £8.25 per hour
Travel time between visits to the service user will be paid by the employer to the employee, together with any costs associated with their work (i.e. mobile phone use)
Carers will be given the freedom to provide appropriate care and the time to talk to their client; 15 minute visits to the service user will not be used
Staff will have the choice of either fixed term contracts or nil hours (if they want flexibility of work)
This has certainly gone a long way from previously, where staff were being paid under the minimum wage because of not being paid for travel time/costs etc. Many of our members working for such employers had a very rough deal and this Charter goes a long way to addressing that.