Ruth Mitchell

Funding boost to resolve work disputes

The government has announced plans to invest an extra £37m in preventing workplace disputes reaching industrial tribunals. The scheme, announced by employment minister Pat McFadden, will allow the government’s conciliation service ACAS to offer assistance at any point of a dispute and improve its telephone helpline service.

The move was welcomed by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development, which estimates the average employer spends 350 days in management time each year dealing with disciplinary cases and workplace disputes.

Mike Emmott, CIPD’s Employee Relations Adviser said: “Hopefully this investment signals the start of a gradual culture change in how conflict at work is managed, from one where litigation is frequently the first step, to one where mediation and more informal dispute resolution in general becomes much more commonly used.

“We’re pleased the statutory dispute resolution regulations are on the way out. This additional investment in promoting the use of mediation and informal conflict resolution generally will help ensure the abolition of the regulations is accompanied by a real push to secure better employment relations for the benefit of employers, employees and the UK economy as a whole.”

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