The Advisory Conciliation and Arbitration Service is to relaunch its
arbitration scheme following poor take-up.
Rita Donaghy, chairwoman of Acas, told Personnel Today that plans for a
high-profile relaunch of the voluntary scheme will top the agenda at its next
council meeting, but a date has not yet been set.
The scheme was launched last May to ease the burden on the employment
tribunal system and Acas predicted it would handle 1,000 cases in its first
year. It has so far received only 11 applications, and completed six.
Donaghy blamed promotional setbacks in the run-up to last year’s General
Election and a lack of enthusiasm from the legal sector.
She said: "There is a tendency for lawyers to talk the scheme down
because legal representatives are not needed."
The lack of a right to appeal has been cited as a reason for the scheme’s
"A lot is made of it, but I think most people want a quick settlement
so that they can get on with the rest of their lives," she said.