EO seeks out trading standards and environmental health staff

The
Employers’ Organisation for local government (EO) is to run a recruitment and
awareness campaign to tackle the shortage of trading standards officers and
environmental health staff.

The ‘Raising
the Profile’ campaign aims to raise awareness of the important role that local
authority public protection regulatory services play in contributing to the
social, economic and environmental well-being of local communities.

Less
than half the number of trading standards officers needed to replace those lost
through natural turnover started degrees in 2002-2003. A recent EO survey also
finds that 43 per cent of authorities are experiencing difficulties in
recruiting environmental health officers.

As
part of the campaign, local authorities in England and Wales will be asked to
make a public commitment to developing a recruitment and retention strategy to
address vacancies and turnover in regulatory services.

The
EO will also lobby for additional external funds to boost bursaries for
environmental health graduates, and for the introduction of new national
initiatives to help local authorities recruit and retain staff. 

Mick
James, the EO’s assistant director of recruitment and careers, said: “This is a
much needed development, and one that will have a significant impact on
recruitment and retention of staff in local government in both the short and
medium-term. 

“To
be successful, it is important that local authorities develop robust
recruitment and retention strategies, and invest in their staff’s development
and training.”

The
Raising the Profile partnership consists of the Local Government Association
(LGA), the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA), the Improvement and
Development Agency (IDeA), the Employers’ Organisation (EO), the Trading
Standards Institute (TSI) and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health
(CIEH).

By
Ben Willmott

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