The Citizens Advice Service is the most common external source of advice for employees who experience problems at work. In Scotland last year, clients brought over 50,625 new employment issues to their local CAB.
CAS warmly welcomes the UWS-Oxfam Partnership’s important study ‘What Makes for Decent Work?’ which has published its initial findings. It rightly recognises that whilst receiving a wage that covers essential household expenses is very important, it is not the only measure of what makes for decent work. How people are treated at work is also part of the puzzle, with issues like job security, paid leave, safety and supportive managers also highly valued by low paid workers.
The UWS-Oxfam study is the latest important contribution to a growing recognition of the importance of fair work in Scotland. This includes the creation of the Fair Work Convention and the Scottish Parliament Economy Energy and Tourism Committee’s ‘Work, Wages and Wellbeing’ inquiry which also examined similar issues. Citizens Advice Scotland’s own ‘Fair Enough?’ and ‘Working at the Edge’ publications have previously examined the parallel problems of in-work poverty and poor employment practices.
To inform the UWS-Oxfam study, this report analyses the relevant issues that CAB clients sought advice on in 2014/15.