Posted on 15.4.15 by David Walton
Despite the efforts of the main three political parties to tick that worker-friendly box, the 2015 General Election really does seem to be a case of “move along please, there’s nothing to see here”.
The Conservatives have offered 3 days’ paid volunteering leave in addition to existing holiday entitlement, just at a time when everyone is trying to grapple with the myriad of holiday pay decisions in the tribunals.
The Libdems have promised to triple statutory paternity leave rights (currently 2 weeks), just at a time when businesses are banging their heads on desks trying to find their way round the new, and scarcely penetrable, shared parental leave regulations.
Meanwhile, Labour has been banging the zero-hour contract drum. Of course, the main objection to zero-hour contracts was the exclusivity clauses (“thou shalt work for no other”) and they are on the way out already. Otherwise, zero-hour contracts can work very well for all, despite attempts to demonise them. In reality there is next to zero to talk about here.
I looked at the BBC policy guide to the upcoming election here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/election/2015/manifesto-guide and, no, there’s no headline category for employment/workers/industrial relations. Which is actually fine by me after the legislative programmes of recent years. So, just as the politicians appear to be limiting themselves to a bit of a box-ticking exercise in respect of appealing to the workers of Britain, we will probably all be focussing on other matters, come the main box-ticking on 7th May. Although having said that, I’ve just spotted a Green Party commitment to phasing in a maximum 35 hour working week. Now that sounds interesting…
For more information on this post you can contact Ed Gregory in our Employment Law Team on 0161 930 5117