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Employment Relations Act 1999

CAC, ACAS, Commissioners and Certification Officer

Section 26: ACAS: General duty

238.The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) was established under the Employment Protection Act 1975. It is an executive non-departmental public body with about 700 staff. ACAS provides conciliation in collective trade disputes and most categories of dispute about individual employment rights. The Service appoints mediators and arbitrators to make recommendations to resolve disputes. It also provides advice and information in a wide range of ways to improve industrial relations and help prevent disputes from arising.

239.ACAS’s general duty is found in section 209 of the 1992 Act as last amended by the Trade Union Reform and Employment Rights Act 1993. Section 26 amends section 209 by removing the particular requirement on ACAS to give priority to its work on dispute resolution leaving it to read: “It is the general duty of ACAS to promote the improvement of industrial relations”.

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