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Myths of the workplace: Acas services are for members only

When it's reported on the news that a trade union is involved in a dispute with an employer, it's not unusual for Acas to be mentioned in the story too. After all, quite apart from its statutory roles, Acas is often the first port of call when two sides can't see eye to eye in employment relations matters.

It's perhaps because of this that some people may have come to confuse Acas with a trade union. Recent research undertaken by Acas found that some of its advisers had had to explain to people seeking advice that Acas was not a union and that they did not need to be a member to benefit from its services.

On the contrary, Acas is an independent body with no membership requirements. Acas stands for Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service. It's a service that has been helping people in organisations of every size since 1975 (and in other guises since 1896). Acas' expertise is available to employers, employees, managers and HR professionals alike, who can get free and impartial advice from the Acas website or by calling the Acas Helpline on 0300 123 1100.

Acas doesn't only help thousands of organisations resolve disputes by being a trusted independent service with many years' experience of giving expert confidential advice. It also aims to improve working life generally through better employment relations, which it does by supplying up-to-date information and advice, offering high quality training, and working with organisations to solve problems and boost performance.

Visit the Acas Training Courses, Workshops and Projects area for more information.

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