Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS)
Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS). Founded in 1974, this is a UK public body whose core function is 'preventing and resolving problems in the workplace'. It is run by a Council of 12 members from business, unions, and independent sector and has approximately 800 staff in England, Scotland and Wales. There are 11 main regional centres plus a head office in London. ACAS defines its services as follows:
- the act of reconciling or bringing together the parties in a dispute with the aim of moving forward to a settlement acceptable to all sides
- an independent arbitrator or arbiter (in Scotland) deciding the outcome of a dispute. The decision may well be binding in law.
- acting as an intermediary in talking to both sides. The aim is for the parties to resolve the problem between themselves but the mediator will make suggestions along the way.