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Council / SIC receives accreditation after taking part in gender equality scheme

SIC chief executive Maggie Sandison.

SHETLAND Islands Council (SIC) has received a bronze accreditation after taking part in a pilot scheme with focuses on gender equality at work.

Equally Safe at Work is the first accreditation programme of its type to be run in the country, and it explores the prevention of violence against women.

It has been developed by Close the Gap, Scotland’s expert policy advocacy organisation working on women’s labour market participation.

Shetland Islands Council is one of the first four local authorities to be recognised in this way, along with Aberdeen City Council, Midlothian Council and North Lanarkshire Council. 

SIC chief executive Maggie Sandison said: “I’m really pleased that we have been recognised for the work we’ve done over the past couple of years on promoting gender equality within the council. 

“After consulting with our staff back in 2019, we set out on a range of tasks.  We delivered new training on violence against women and flexible working, and developed a new violence against women policy.

“That’s supported by new procedures and guidance which helps make it possible for our employees, for example, to talk to us about their experience of domestic abuse, and for us to provide them with help and support. 

“We’ve updated our employees code of conduct to highlight issues around gender inequality, and set out the standards of behaviour we expect from our employees, as well as the consequences of failing to do so. 

“We are clear that we have a zero-tolerance approach towards employees who commit violence against women, and we look forward now to progressing our work on gender equality at work and to prevent violence against women both in the workplace and in the wider community”.