The largest public sector trade union in the North has called on Derry City & Strabane District Council to commit to a full consultation with staff before any changes to its policy on emblems is introduced.
NIPSA issued the call after the Council's Governance and Strategic Planning Committee approved a move to allow "the wearing of the Easter Lily for one week leading up to Easter Sunday" and "the wearing of the Poppy for one week inclusive of Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day" by Council staff from next year.
Alan Law, NIPSA Official stated: "NIPSA and Unite participated in a consultation with Councillors considering the issue of Emblems in the Workplace. We reiterated our position that Council should follow the Fair Employment Code of Practice and that we had not received any enquiries from members in relation to this issue.
"We reminded Council that any change to their existing policy would require full consultation with the Trade Unions. We emphasised the need to continue to have a harmonious workplace."
While the G&SP Committee specifically stipulated that the approval was "subject to consultation with employees" and that "equality screening will also be necessary" Mr. Law said some media reports on Thursday suggested that this was not the case.
He said: "Reports in the media today appear to contradict the role of the Trade Unions in the initial consultation and omit the requirement that before any change is implemented we will be ensuring the normal consultation requirements are completed.”