REDEPLOYED workers at Clacks Council could face redundancy if they fail to accept a 'suitable' role within the organisation after six months.

The move would reduce the period an employee could remain on the redeployment list from the indefinite timescale currently in place.

Afterwards, council staff could then be subject to compulsory redundancy measures, with “appropriate compensation” given to the employee.

The change has been suggested to bring Clackmannanshire Council in line with other Scottish local authorities, while also preventing instances of employees being on the redeployment list for years, at a cost to the public purse.

However, the move has been heavily criticised by one trade union and labelled as a move to bring in compulsory redundancies at Clacks Council.

Elected members are set to vote on the amendment to the current redeployment procedure at Kilncraigs this Thursday.

Council papers state: “The open-ended nature of the current policy position has created a small number of situations, where a suitable alternative cannot be found meaning that the individual staff member remains on redeployment indefinitely.

“In such circumstances, the council continues to bear the full costs of the post despite having made the decision to cease or reduce the function.

“Currently, there are seven staff on redeployment as a result of previous/existing redesigns at a total unbudgeted cost of £304,951.

“The longest period to date of indefinite redeployment for one member of staff is more than five years.”

Under the new changes, the new proposed Redeployment Procedure 2023 outlines key changes from the existing policy.

It reads: “Staff displaced as a result of organisational change will remain on redeployment for a maximum period of six months.

“Where an employee decides to reject the offer of a post which the council considers to be suitable, they may lose entitlement to any potential redundancy payment.

“The employee is required to outline fully in writing their reasons for refusing to accept a post that is considered as being a suitable alternative so that the council can consider its position with regard to redundancy.”

The move has been met with controversy from trade unions, who implied that the change was proposed to allow councils to save money.

The Clackmannanshire branch of Unison spoke out against the proposals, voicing concern over the impact on the workforce who may live locally.

Kevin McIntyre, Unison Clackmannanshire branch secretary, said: “Every councillor has been made aware that a vote for this change in policy is a vote to introduce compulsory redundancy at Clackmannanshire Council.

“Much of the workforce also live in Clackmannanshire and so this decision will have wider implications for the local economy and levels of deprivation when staff are simply dismissed.

“An employer the size of Clackmannanshire Council should be retraining staff for the jobs of the future and incentivising those who may want to go with better settlement packages.

“That is a far fairer way to manage changes to services and staffing levels.”