Zero Hours Justice Gold Employer Accreditation

Earlier this week, we were very proud to receive our Zero Hours Justice Gold Employer accreditation; Our CEO, Douglas, notes that:

As a social enterprise and a charity, Community Enterprise is passionate not only about good practice across the sector but also about our own Fair Work processes. As part of this, we are committed to good pay and conditions. We are committed to only using zero-hours contracts where people want it. It has never happened so far, and this accreditation reminds us of the importance of secure work in an organisation that looks after its staff.’

As the cost-of-living crisis in Scotland intensifies, many of the people who take on zero-hour contracts, have high levels of stress connected to not knowing when work will be available or the fear that it could be cancelled at any time, but feel they need to take the contract to support themselves and their families. Zero Hours Justice, in a 2021 article entitled ‘Number of zero-hour contracts higher than pre-pandemic levels’ noted that over 996,000 UK workers are on zero-hours contracts currently and feel that more and more employers are using them since the pandemic to manage the downturn in demand for services since lockdowns. 

The Scottish Government has laid out its Action plans to create 'Fairer Working Lives' under the Fairer Scotland Action Plan but as the ministerial foreword notes; 

It takes all of us to build a fairer Scotland. Government can't do it on its own...' 

and this is why it is so important that organisations take responsibility for reviewing their policies and work towards a good standard of pay and working practices that allow people a high standard of living.

The recent Social Enterprise in Scotland Census found that only 14% of employees within the sector were on zero-hour contracts. This doesn't mean that the sector is free from fear connected to job insecurity; due to many organisations' reliance on grant funding to finance roles, employees often worry about job security. The addition of the cost-of-living crisis and higher-than-normal numbers of organisations in financial crisis is further increasing anxiety around job security within the sector. That is why it is so important that the sector recognises the need for good financial planning from an early stage, fair work practices and good pay for all employees.

Zero Hours Justice has been working to increase awareness of the need for fairer working practices across all sectors of the Scottish economy. They support organisations in Scotland to create working environments that contribute to happier and more secure workforces and as a result stronger communities.

Want to learn more about what Zero Hours Justice does? Then head over to their website and check out their articles and accreditation system for more information. If you need support with addressing issues in your organisation, whether it be related to staff contracts or financial crisis, then the Social Enterprise Support Map can help guide you to the best service for support.