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Government of

Information and public services for the Island of Jersey

L'înformâtion et les sèrvices publyis pouor I'Île dé Jèrri

Priority Key Role Policy


This document comes in two parts.

Part one sets out the public services policy and principles regarding transitional and temporary accommodation for post holders in agreed priority key roles.

Part two provides the procedure, setting out how to implement the policy. The procedure is intended as a guide only and may change from time to time.

The Government of Jersey must ensure that 'agreed priority key roles' are filled across its services. There is a need, at times, to look outside Jersey for these skills and support those people relocating (before they make the transition into the private housing market in Jersey). It may also be that a service requires temporary off island cover, which results in unlicensed agency workers requiring accommodation for the duration of their deployment. 

​Priority Key Role policy
​Accommodation Service
​Document Type
​Policy and procedure
​Issue date
​28 July 2023
​Effective date
​28 July 2023
​Review date
​31 July 2025

This policy supersedes all previous policies, circulars and procedures connected with priority key worker accommodation within the Public Service.

Code of practice and policy family

This policy forms part of the code of practice for Talent Development. This code will be reviewed at the start of each term of the States Employment Board, or earlier where relevant public policy, legislation or regulations change.

Priority key role policy

Policy Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to provide information and guidance to departments about the support we offer to post holders in agreed priority key roles, if temporary or transitional housing is required. This policy should be viewed in conjunction with the Government's Relocation policy.

Policy Principles

All our policies are underpinned by our values and behaviours.

This policy and procedure aims to:

  • ensure everyone in scope is treated in a fair, consistent, and equal manner, free from discrimination and victimisation
  • be clearly written, easy to understand and apply
  • attract, recruit, and retain the best people to deliver the highest level of service to islanders
  • appreciate the difficulty in securing accommodation within tight timeframes, with little knowledge of the island, therefore, applying transitional and temporary housing to attract and retain talent
  • recognise that what is considered an agreed priority key role for Government of Jersey may change over time, subject to evolving market conditions
  • ensure that the housing estate which is available to the Government of Jersey is allocated fairly and transparently according to agreed organisational priorities, taking wider rental and purchase market conditions and an objective analysis of need into consideration
  • ensure the finite housing resource is managed in a sustainable way, which ultimately encourages employees to become self-sufficient in the housing market, with all the associated stability. This includes enforcing the temporary nature of the support
  • ensure that where support is made available, it must be funded in a way which is fair to the employee or temporary staff member who is accessing the support and to others across the organisation (in ways that are mindful of the impact on islanders)

Policy Scope

This policy applies to all post holders on a permanent or fixed term contract who are identified as working within priority key roles and those providing services to the public sector under an agency contract in agreed priority key roles, subject to the limitations contained within this document.

Performance and accountabilities

All of us

Post holders within scope of this policy are required to adhere to its terms.

Recruiting managers and line managers

'Our managers are role models, set clear standards and are supportive' (People Strategy Commitment - Your Experience).

Our People Strategy

As a line manager, you are responsible for modelling our values and behaviours. You set the tone for your team and across the organisation.

Your responsibilities under this policy include:

  • routing all accommodation requests for post holders in agreed priority key roles to the accommodation service, giving at least 3 months notice of future housing needs where possible
  • maintaining contact with the accommodation service throughout the recruitment and selection process, via
  • alerting the accommodation service when a change in job role or other circumstances may make the employee ineligible for ongoing support

Chief Officers

  • identify their immediate and future accommodation needs, as part of their strategic workforce planning, resource plans and business planning

Accommodation service

  • enact the policy position outlined in this document
  • provide support and advice to recruiting managers to address their relocation and housing needs
  • maintain a framework of suitable accommodation through appropriate management of accommodation in accordance with this policy and effective procurement activity when necessary

People and Corporate Services

  • support managers undertaking recruitment activity, to raise awareness of this policy and signpost them to appropriate support
  • manage the annual process of proposing and determining key priority roles and ensure approval by the Executive Leadership Team
  • ensure Chief Officers have the relevant data for them to make the case for support as part of the annual review process.

States Employment Board

The Board has a duty to issue Codes of Practice in accordance with Article 8 of the Employment of States of Jersey Employees (Jersey) Law 2025. This code will be reviewed at the start of each term of States Employment Board, or earlier where relevant legislation or regulations change.

The procedure

Temporary accommodation for temporary employees

Defined as short-term support, provided for a fixed period of their contract. The length of stay will be determined by contract but will not normally be more than 6 months for licensed post holders in fixed term posts. Temporary accommodation is likely to be single occupancy and furnished.

Temporary accommodation for agency workers

Defined as short-term accommodation for the duration of their agency contract. This will normally be for a short period to cover staff absences or unexpected vacancies.

Transitional accommodation

Defined as short to medium term support for employees, where an individual may require landing accommodation prior to securing private accommodation in Jersey. Transitional accommodation is likely to be unfurnished and some may be multi-occupancy properties. Transitional accommodation is available for up to 12 months maximum for individual relocating to the island on permanent contracts or for use by individuals on a fixed term contract (maximum of 12 months stay).

Eligibility for accommodation

To access accommodation under this policy, the role must have been designated as an agreed priority key role by the Government of Jersey as part of the annual assessment of accommodation needs (linked to resource planning and workforce planning). In addition, the department must have a candidate who is:

  • under a conditional offer of employment, or have committed to an agency contract, into a priority key role (as determined by this policy)
  • currently living outside Jersey
  • prepared to commit to the written undertaking contained within Jersey Government's priority post holder tenancy agreement

To access transitional accommodation only, the candidate must also hold a fixed term contract of 18 months or more, or a permanent contract.

Where a partner or spouse (as defined by the Control of Housing and work (Jersey) Law 2012) is also commencing employment with the Government of Jersey, and meets the criteria outlined in this policy, their support under this policy will be managed collectively.

Alignment to financial and strategic workforce planning

Departments should consider their accommodation needs as part of their annual planning activity, and in particular their budget setting, strategic workforce planning and resourcing plans. Deadlines for the submission of requirements to the Central Accommodation Unit will therefore be aligned to this activity.

As part of this activity, the Central Accommodation Unit will monitor and report relevant data on a quarterly basis to the Executive Leadership Team (ELT) including (but not limited to):

  • number of available units by type
  • occupancy by department and contract type
  • duration of tenancies by department by contract type

Determining agreed priority key roles

Agreed priority key roles may change over time, as the Government responds to the prevailing demands of the marketplace. They are likely to be drawn from the following groups:

  • Health and social care such as :
      • nurses
      • midwives
      • social workers
      • junior doctors relevant Allied Health Professionals
      • care workers
      • other staff employed within this sector who are critical to service delivery
  • Children, Young People and Skills (CYPES) such as:
    • teachers
    • specialist education professionals
    • relevant Allied Health professionals working within CYPES
    • social workers
    • other staff employed within this sector who are critical to service delivery
  • Justice and Home Affairs such as:
    • paramedics
    • police
    • fire and rescue service personnel
    • prison
    • health and safety
    • customs and immigration personnel
    • other staff employed within this sector who are critical to service delivery
  • other specialised services, which may emerge over time as priority key roles for the Government of Jersey, that can also demonstrate recruitment and retention issues as outlined below

Evidence bases for agreed priority status

Chief Officers will be required to submit their proposed requirements to the Executive Leadership Team on an annual basis, aligned to business planning, workforce planning, and resourcing plans. This submission will determine the degree of access to transitional and temporary housing support. In making a case for access to limited resources, Chief Officers may refer to the following factors:

  • vacancy factor: this is the total number of vacancies in the permanent establishment not currently occupied by a public servant. It includes those posts covered by agency  and zero hours workers
  • turnover within the permanent workforce and turnover within the first 12 months of employment
  • agency spend: this is the total amount spend on agency, casual or locum workers in previous 12 months as a percentage of total spend on direct staffing costs over the same period
  • recruitment: which would be the evidence of failed recruitment campaigns in the previous 12 months or globally recognised skill shortages
  • market value: which would be the evidence of broadly similar posts being advertised elsewhere at higher salaries, taking the local market rates into account
  • risk: the degree to which a vacancy creates a risk to the delivery of government priorities and ministerial duty of care to vulnerable islanders and residents
  • workforce planning: which would be the evidence of steps taken to resolve staffing issues in the longer term, such as the development of career paths and training opportunities

A statistical analysis of need may be taken into consideration during the prioritisation process and as the Government's approach to workforce planning matures.

Thresholds for subsidisation in transitional housing

To access transitional accommodation only, the eligibility criteria is likely to include a review of salary levels. In general, individuals in a licensed post with the financial ability to rent in the private market will not be offered transitional housing support (but may still access temporary accommodation).

To access transitional housing only, the individual must also be employed in an agreed priority key role:

  • a permanent contract of at least 30 hours per week
  • an existing fixed term contract of 18 months or more, of at least 30 hours per week


The accommodation costs associated with this policy will be recharged to the hiring department on a quarterly basis, using standardised accounting protocols for reporting purposes. In making a request to the accommodation service, departments must ensure that an adequate budget is made available in line with the government and strategic workforce plan.

Interface with the Relocation Policy

This policy should be read in conjunction with the Government of Jersey's relocation policy.

Eligible post holders in permanent roles or fixed term contracts of 18 months or more (in licensed roles) may still access all other aspects of the Government of Jersey's Relocation policy.

Eligible post holders in roles with a fixed term contract of less than 18 months, will not be eligible to receive both the rental allowance (outlined in the relocation policy) and access to subsidised accommodation (outlined in this policy). If the post holder is offered and accepts temporary or transitional accommodation the rental allowance will no longer be payable. 

Support for employees beyond the 12 month tenancy period for transitional housing

We need to manage the government's limited housing resource in a sustainable way, which ultimately encourages employees to become self-sufficient in the housing market, without the need for support from their employer. However, occasionally the planned transition into non-subsidised housing may require some limited flexibility of no more than 3 months in exceptional circumstances. For example, if the planned house sale or private rental property is delayed. This additional flexibility will require Head of Service approval.

Appeals in relation to the designation of an agreed priority key role

Agreed priority key role status will be determined as part of a 12-monthly review process, overseen by the Executive Leadership Team, and linked to government planning and workforce planning activity. 

Tenancy type and management

Post holders in agreed priority key roles will be eligible for transitional accommodation support, which meets their household needs and the nature of the contract being undertaken. For clarification, currently property sizes are:

​Number of occupants
​Property size
​Single adult
​1 bedroom or studio 
1 bedroom​ 
​Single adult or couple and 1 child
​2 bedrooms 

A maximum of 2 children can share 1 bedroom, regardless of their age or gender.

If 2 children share a bedroom, they qualify for a bedroom each when the eldest child reaches the age of 5.

We consider a child someone who is: 

  • aged up to 18 and not in full-time education
  • aged up to 25 and in full-time education

It is a requirement of the scheme that at least 1 eligible post holder must always remain on the tenancy

It is important to note that the tenancy offered to post holders in agreed priority key roles is not an open-ended tenancy, and no secure rights of tenure or the right to buy are offered. 

Post holders will not be allowed to sub-let any part of their home. Pets may be permitted in some accommodation (subject to local conditions attached to specific property)

Tenancy Review

The maximum period of tenancy under this policy varies according to the nature of the accommodation and the contractual status of the post holder.

For transitional housing (occupied by licensed workers in either permanent of longer-term fixed term roles) the maximum occupancy period is 12 months.

All transitional housing tenancies will be reviewed after 6-months, primarily to ensure that at least one tenant remains eligible under this policy. At this stage consideration will also be had to the conduct of the tenant and their household. Provided at least one tenant continues to be eligible under this policy, and that no steps to commence legal action have been taken in relation to non-payment of rent or other tenancy breach, then the tenancy will ordinarily be renewed for a further 6 months (up to a maximum of 12 months).

If nobody in the household is employed in an agreed priority key role at the point of review then the tenancy agreement will be terminated, and possession action will commence (with an appropriate notice period).

The tenancy of a post holder in a key role, which is de-prioritised as part of the annual review process, will continue until the planned end of their tenancy.

Where the reason for leaving is voluntary, the notice period will automatically commence when the employee submits their resignation and tenancy be terminated within 4 weeks of their final day of employment.

The Government of Jersey may occasionally exercise some limited flexibility discretion, where the reason for termination is involuntary or unplanned.

If the post holder's household composition has changed since the last review which would otherwise make the household ineligible for the size of the home they occupy, then they may be required to transfer to a smaller or larger property.

Levels of rental subsidy for licensed post holders

Agreed priority key role accommodation in Jersey (for post holders who meet the eligibility threshold outlined above) is initially offered at up to 80% of the market rent for an equivalent property. This level of subsidy is available for a period of no more than 6 months. The level of subsidy will decrease after 6 months and then again after 12 months, to encourage a move to non-subsidised housing arrangements.

The reduction in the level of subsidy over time can be summarised as follows:

​1 to 6 months
​7 to 12 months
​13 to 15 months (where a short extension is needed)
​Tenant pays 80% of market value
Tenant pays 90% of market value​
​Tenant pays 100% of market value

Rent and levels of subsidy may be reviewed on an annual basis as part of the annual planning process. In general, the base level of rent will not be increased during the 12 month rental period.

The level of subsidy and the duration of tenancy for unlicensed post holders in agency roles (accessing temporary accommodation only) will be set at a departmental level, taking local market conditions into consideration.

Procurement of suitable accommodation

Procurement of suitable accommodation will be managed centrally by the accommodation service, working collaboratively with Commercial Services. Departments are asked to contact the accommodation team for advice. 

Provision of other housing-related benefits

In general, other costs associated with a residency should not be funded by the Government of Jersey. These might include cleaning services, access to on-site facilities or subsidised restaurants.

Departments may choose to make a provision for these peripheral housing benefits if there is a genuine attraction or retention advantage. However, associated costs must be reported on an annual basis (as part of the key role review process) and should be treated as a benefit in kind for personal taxation purposes where applicable.

Appeals by individuals in relation to their accommodation

Access to accommodation is non-contractual and determined by an annual review of need by Chief Officers. The type and location of available accommodation may change over time. Whilst the accommodation service will endeavour to meet the needs of individuals, there is no right of appeal if an individual disagrees with the type or location of accommodation made available to them.

Emergency accommodation for ineligible staff

This policy may be applied on occasion where a person in a key role, who might otherwise not be eligible for support, faces an unplanned emergency which might otherwise result in their resignation from the service. In this scenario, an additional support package is limited to a maximum of 3 months and is subject to the availability of accommodation and requires both budget holder and Head of Service approval.

Applying the policy retrospectively

Each department will manage the implementation of this policy for existing members of staff who are in accommodation at the point this policy is adopted. This will depend on individual agreements and arrangements in place and will be at the Chief Officers discretion to apply.

Monitoring and review of this policy

This policy is owned by the accommodation service, who is responsible for its monitoring and review. This policy will be reviewed every 2 years.

Related policies

This policy should be read in conjunction with the relocation policy and procedure (available on MyStates).

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