Sandwell Council offer rewards for staff with no sick days

Staff who notch up 100 per cent attendance with Sandwell Council are to be rewarded with vouchers and leisure passes under a proposed new scheme.

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Health insurance is also among the incentives up for grabs for those who do not take a single day off sick in a 12 month period. Last year staff at the authority took an average of nine days off sick.

However, the move has been criticised as a “bribe” to staff for doing their job.

A report outlining the scheme will be discussed at a meeting of Sandwell council on Monday.

If approved, the pilot would begin in January and all those who have attained 100 per cent attendance would be entered into a draw to receive a reward. Maternity and disability related absences will be excluded as will absence for injuries sustained in the course of work.

Rewards have already been agreed from Sandwell Leisure Trust in the form of leisure passes and the Birmingham Hospital Saturday Fund health insurance provider. BT will contribute £200 in vouchers.

Councillor Mahboob Hussain said the initiative was a way of thanking committed staff through difficult times.

But Robert Oxley from the Taxpayers’ Alliance said the council “shouldn’t have to bribe council staff to pitch up to do the job they are paid for”.