Tag Archives: Zero Hours Contracts

Flexibility ‘a pipe dream’ for low paid workers – FlexibleBoss

In 2014 Working Families received almost 3,000 calls to its legal advice helpline. Based on this the charity points out that, while workers have the right to request flexible working, for those in low paid sectors flexible working remains a ‘pipe dream’.

Working Families notes that retail, social care, catering and hospitality sectors rely on ‘casualised’ labour, offering contracts that offer little job security and few guaranteed hours:

By their nature, such insecure jobs, with varying and unpredictable weekly hours… [that] make it very difficult if not impossible for workers to successfully request a change in their hours or working pattern to accommodate a change in their family circumstances, or to resist a problematic change in their hours or working pattern…

They point out that refusal to change working hours, often at short notice, “can easily lead to there being no work at all”. An issue exacerbated by the imposition of employment tribunal fees in 2013.

Read more at FlexibleBoss.

Zero hour contracts are ‘tip of the iceberg’ of damaging shift work, say researchers – University of Cambridge

Reporting on new research from the University of Cambridge, this article suggests that zero hour contracts and other modes of flexible working are abused by managers, and are leading to insecurity, anxiety and stress.

Whereas flexible working is often heralded as helping employees, the report’s authors argue it is being subverted to suit employers and is causing suffering to many workers who need to be available at short notice while often not working enough hours to earn a living wage.

They suggest that employees should be granted the statutory right to work additional core hours and have a say in the scheduling of their hours.

Read more here.