Employment rights revamped as government tackles gig economy

Greg Clark

"What we needed to see was a serious extension of rights to workers and a serious proposal on government enforcement of employment law, not just a consultation on the topic".

We want to embrace new ways of working, and to do so we will be one of the first countries to prepare our employment rules to reflect the new challenges.

It will seek to protect workers' rights by introducing a new naming scheme for employers who fail to pay employment tribunal awards and quadruple employment tribunal fines for employers showing malice to £20,000.

"We at APSCo welcome this announcement and are very supportive of the Government's desire for clarity - particularly on employment status and how this is aligned to tax status, workers' rights and entitlements and the differentiation between employed, workers and self-employed".

These include a list of "day-one" rights such as holiday and sick pay entitlements and a new right to a payslip for all workers, including agency workers, and a right for all workers - including zero-hour and agency workers - to request a more stable contract after 12 months with a hirer, to provide more financial security for those on flexible contracts.

"Our response to this report will mean tangible progress towards that goal as we build an economy that works for everyone".

The Government said it will launch "a detailed consultation" to explore options that would make it "easier for both the workforce and businesses to understand whether someone is an employee, worker or self-employed..."

Dr. Jason Moyer-Lee, General Secretary of the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB) said: "Like the Taylor Review, it so far appears big on grandiose claims, light on substance".

"These plans won't stop the hire and fire culture of zero-hours contracts or sham self-employment, and they will still leave 1.8 million workers excluded from key protections".

"Ministers need to up their game".

Today, the United Kingdom government launched a series of consultations on employment status, enforcement of employment rights, and "measures to increase transparency in the United Kingdom labour market".

"On important issues, including pay for variable hours workers, employment status and representation of workers I welcome the direction indicated today, but there is more work to be done to encourage the Government to be bold in living up to its commitment to good work for all".

The government has promised an overhaul of employment rights to improve conditions for millions of workers, including those in the gig economy.

"Labour warned that the review did not go far enough, and yet the government has failed to adequately meet even the most basic of recommendations". Only recently we heard of the devastating case of a gig economy worker, who died after being fined by DPD for attending urgent medical appointments. But unions said the plans did not go far enough and accused the government of further delaying a decision on the thorny topic of whether those working for firms such as Uber and food courier Deliveroo deserve more rights.

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