Community Jobs Compact
27 May 2020
Postgraduate students from Cardiff University have encouraged employers to commit to best practice in pay, equal opportunities, job security and training as part of an initiative led by Citizens Cymru Wales.
The CJC aims to bring local people and employers together to tackle poverty, unemployment, and under-representation in the workforce through:
- Real Living Wage accreditation.
- Fair recruitment practices, including name- and address-blind CVs and unconscious bias training.
- Job security, including no compulsion for zero-hours contracts.
After researching local organisations and their business practices, the students took part in an ‘Action Day’ on 3 December 2019. Dressed as Santa and reciting Christmas Carols, they delivered Living Wage hampers and festive cards to seven local employers along with invitations to a series of meetings.
The resulting discussions saw Cardiff University Students’ Union and Cardiff Metropolitan University become Real Living Wage accredited employers. While further commitments were made by all seven employers (Cardiff and Vale University Health Board, Welsh Ambulance Service, South Wales Police, BBC Cymru Wales and the Arts Council of Wales) to subsequent meetings to discuss outstanding issues and possible future accreditation.
Dr Deborah Hann, Senior Lecturer in Employment Relations and Programme Director on the MSc Human Resources Management, said: “I’m so proud of the work our group has carried out with Citizens Cymru Wales...”
Since the start of the academic year in October 2019, students learned how a listening project in the Butetown area of Cardiff found people in the area felt their ethnic origins and postal address limited their ability to apply for and secure quality jobs with local employers.
The teaching, delivered in conjunction with Citizen Cymru Wales, included a tour of Butetown, meetings with community members who conveyed the issues at hand and a series of insights from employers who have already signed up to the CJC.
Dr Hann added: “As well as delivering positive outcomes for Citizens Cymru Wales, it’s part of a drive towards a new teaching agenda in the Cardiff University which champions authentic assessment.
“For me, that means getting students involved in projects where they’re learning while making a difference in the communities here in Cardiff and beyond.”
Leading sessions in weeks 1 and 7 of the employment relations module, practitioner experts from Citizens Cymru Wales demonstrated how community organising works, gave examples of previous campaigns and then worked with the postgraduates to progress their ‘Action Day’ project and make it practicable.