At its meeting on 11 October the Board considered the evidence received as part of its review of staffing support for Members and the initial feedback received on the Disciplinary Procedure and Grievance Procedure. Having considered the issues, the Board has agreed to consult on its proposals arising from the review of staffing support and proposed changes to both Procedures. Details of the proposals are outlined in the consultation document.

Review of staffing support for Members

As you may be aware the Board has previously undertaken two consultations as part of its review of staffing support for Members. The first focused on introducing greater flexibility to Members and the second on flexibility to Political Parties as to how they can utilise their allowance.

The Board considered the evidence it had received during its review for the remaining issues within the review’s terms of reference at its meeting on 11 October and agreed to consult on amending a number of provisions within its Determination. Full consultation details have been published to the Board’s website and are available in the annex to this letter. A summary of the consultation proposals are noted below:

  • amending how the employment of family members of Members are funded;
  • introducing privilege days for support staff;
  • introducing a formal compassionate leave policy for support staff;
  • adjusting support staff salary in April of each year by the change in the Annual Survey of Hours and Earnings.

The consultation document also provides an overview of the issues which the Board has considered as part of the review but has decided that in light of the evidence received not to propose any amendments to these provisions at the current time. You may wish to be aware that some of these issues will be considered as part of the Board’s review of the Determination for the Sixth Assembly.

Discipline Procedure and Grievance Procedure

The Board has agreed to review the Discipline Procedure and Grievance Procedure following the publication of the new Dignity and Respect Policy. At its October meeting the Board considered the initial feedback it had received on both procedures and has agreed to consult on number of proposals to amend both procedures. Details of these consultation proposals are noted in the consultation document.

The consultation ran from 24 October to 13 December 2018.

Decision

The Board considered the responses received at its meeting on 17 January, and agreed to revise its original proposals. Full details of the Board’s decisions are noted in the update letter.