A massive stand has been taken by councillors in the fight to stop violence against women as they voted to obligate businesses to make sure workers got home safe at night in North Ayrshire.
Irvine Councillor Nairn McDonald put forward a motion at Wednesday’s full council meeting which will mean hospitality companies will have to provide transport for staff working late at night.
The Labour member said: “The epidemic of male violence against women is one of the most pressing of our times.
“People will think that because we are not in Westminster or Holyrood our hands are tied. We can act and I would argue we have a moral obligation to do so.”
He urged the council to get behind the Unite union’s Get Me Home safely campaign.
The campaign asks licensing boards around the country to make it a condition of being a licence holder that employers must provide staff who work late and beyond normal public transport times with safe and free or affordable transport home after their shift.
Seconding the motion, Ardrossan councillor Amanda Kerr said: “I can understand the predicament of staff working in places with late licences. The company I worked with provided us with transport home late at night and in the early hours of the morning.
“Sadly this is not mirrored through every organisation.
“It is important that the licensing board consults all relevant parties to establish a safe home recommendation within the licensing policy statement to support those working in this industry.”
The motion was carried unanimously.
Irvine West councillor Chloe Robertson, from the SNP, said it was “amazing” the motion had been passed.
She tweeted: “Before I could drive, in an old job, I had to walk for an hour at 3am to get home.
“As a young woman, this was terrifying. Many across the country will have similar experiences. I hope that other councils follow suit.”