Police Negotiating Board for Scotland: constitution

The Police Negotiating Board for Scotland (PNBS) is a public body that negotiates the pay, terms and conditions of Police Officers in Scotland, through collective bargaining. The constitution sets out how the PNBS will reach agreements, or if failing to agree, how conciliation and/or arbitration is carried out.

First-Stage Conciliation

33. First-stage conciliation will commence as soon as reasonably practicable and in any event within one month of the date of the failure to agree being recorded, unless the secretariat has referred the case to Acas, on behalf of the Board. The Chairperson, acting as conciliator, will meet the Sides either separately or together and will seek to promote a voluntarily agreed recommendation to be reported back to the Board as a possible basis for agreement.

34. Should agreement not be reached as a result of the first-stage conciliation, the Chairperson will refer the matter to a second-stage conciliation process provided by Acas.

35. Where Acas conciliation fails to result in agreement, the section 55B(1) matter:

(a) must be referred to arbitration if the Board agree[s] to do so;

(b) may be referred to arbitration by the Chairperson without the agreement of the Board.

36. The terms of reference for any dispute referred to arbitration will be agreed:

(a) by the Board, taking account of the views of both Sides, if the referral is under paragraph 37(a);

(b) by the Chairperson, taking account of the views of both Sides, if the referral is under paragraph 37(b).

37. For the purposes of the arbitration, the Sides are to be considered the 'parties' to the arbitration.

38. Acas conciliation and arbitration will be carried out by Acas in accordance with the 'Conciliation and Arbitration Procedure of the Police Negotiating Board for Scotland', set out in Annex A.

39. In accordance with section 9 and schedule 1 of the of the Arbitration (Scotland) Act 2010 ("the 2010 Act"), the 'parties' have agreed to disapply the default rules of the 2010 Act, and as set out under regulation 3 of the Police Negotiating Board for Scotland (Constitution, Arbitration and Qualifying Cases) Regulations 2023, the mandatory rules in schedule 1 of the 2010 Act do not apply, to arbitration carried out under this constitution.

40. A decision made through an arbitration award is deemed to be an agreement of the Board on the representations to be made to the Scottish Ministers, however, the Board may subsequently agree not to make representations based on the arbitration award.

41. Should the Board not make representations based on an arbitration award the Board must either make a separate agreement on the disputed issues or agree that the disputed issues are no longer in dispute.


Email: police_division_hub_mailbox@gov.scot

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