Consultation on zero-hours contracts to be launched this year
During the Liberal Democrat Autumn Conference 2013, Business Secretary, Vince Cable, announced his decision to launch a consultation on zero-hours contracts later this year. He stated that the consultation will “explore how to tackle any abuses, particularly around exclusivity”. This follows a review by BIS officials on the growth of the use of the contracts which highlighted four key areas of concern:
Exclusivity. Employees are not guaranteed a minimum number of hours and are prevented from working for other employers.
Transparency. There is no legal definition for zero-hours contracts and no clarity that it may cover a number of working arrangements.
Uncertainty of earnings.
Balance of power in employment relationship. Many employers felt that they would be penalised if they do not accept the hours offered by the employer.
Further details and the official launch date of the consultation will be confirmed later this year.