Tories plan Scottish public sector absence crackdownScottish Conservative finance spokesman Derek Brownlee has unveiled new measures aimed at reducing the number of sick days taken by workers in the country's public sector.

Under the proposals outlined by the South of Scotland MSP yesterday (October 13th 2010), employees would be obliged to speak with an NHS nurse before being permitted to take a day off due to illness.

"In very simple terms, if you are off sick you don't phone your line manager first of all," he said. "You phone a call centre which is staffed by mainly nurses and people who are clinically trained. They will assess you."

Mr Brownlee added that healthcare workers would not be subject to stringent targets imposed on other public sector bodies as they are at greater risk from infection.

His comments came after it was revealed that staff at Swansea City Council's social services department took an average of 19 days off sick last year.

Posted by Ross George