09 October 2014 #Employment
Business Secretary Vince Cable has launched this week an ambitious sounding wide-ranging employment review to help clarify and potentially strengthen the employment status of up to a million British workers.
This follows the recent review and upcoming legislation of zero hours contracts. It is considered that an increasing number of people in the UK are on ‘worker’ employment contracts which have fewer basic rights (such as unfair dismissal or maternity pay) than the vast majority of employees who are on ‘employee’ contracts.
A key concern is that in many instances workers are not aware of their employment status and therefore what employment rights they are entitled to. Many employers are also unsure what rights their workforce is entitled to, running the risk of legal challenge if they get something wrong.
The review will start with the difficult task of reviewing the current employment framework and considering the options in extending employment rights to more workers and streamlining in a very complex area of employment law.
The government is concerns that individuals often cannot be certain what their employment status is until they are at an employment tribunal.
Officials expect to present interim findings by the end of the year, and hope to submit recommendations for next steps to ministers by March 2015. This poses a massive task, given the often complex and technical nature of the law in this area that has developed over many decades.