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Contact the Branch Secretary Lorraine Thomson on (2) 33093 or email Lorraine Thompson
Latest updates 20 August 2020
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Members who have not updated or provided their email addresses should contact the branch office immediately on 0141 847 1687.
The Scottish Government have announced that testing eligibility has been extended for young children.
Children under the age of five who are displaying potential coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms will be eligible for testing from today.
Currently, children under five who have potential COVID-19 symptoms are not routinely tested and a test is only carried out if there is a pressing clinical need to do so – for example a young child who needs to be admitted to hospital and whose condition may be due to COVID-19 or a young child who is in hospital for some reason whose condition unexpectedly deteriorates.
Now, with childcare settings reopening from 15 July, children aged under five who have COVID-19 symptoms will be eligible for routine testing through all routes including drive-in Regional Testing Centres, Mobile Testing Units and by ordering a home test kit.
More information here - https://www.gov.scot/news/covid-19-testing-for-under-fives/
Programme for government
The programme of government outlined by the First Minister this week contained nothing to addresses the scale of the current financial crisis in local government or the urgency of maintaining essential local services.
Whilst the programme did announce that there would be a revised date for rolling out the expansion of early years education to 1,140 hours before the end of this year this will add further pressure to budgets for those local authorities that had paused implementation due to the Covid pandemic.
The review of adult social care is just that – a review. The programme does not contain a firm commitment or any detail around the delivery of a national care service.
More info on these here:
Homeworking HMRC Allowance
As you will be aware Scottish Government have previously issued Homeworking guidance for all sectors. This guidance is intended to support employers and the self-employed with the continuation of homeworking. It was developed to complement the suite of COVID-19 related guidance on safer workplaces.
Whilst much of this is reflective of the issues covered in the guidance we recently agreed and issued it with COSLA, helpfully, goes a bit further in relation to the HMRC allowance by stating that “employers are encouraged to claim the homeworking allowance and pay it to employees directly”.
You will be aware that the UNISON Stirling Branch wrote to Stirling Council requesting that they pay this directly to employees. We since had a response stating that they are not in a position to do so . We can now advise that we raised this yesterday at the Stirling Council Tripartite where there was a commitment by Councillor’s to look into this and at our request a laundry allowance for the washing of work wear/uniforms. We will keep you updated.