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UK Contractors: REC responds to Business Secretary’s employment review announcement

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Contractors might be interested to hear that the REC has responded to announcements made by Business Secretary Vince Cable last week.

Vince Cable made his speech at the Liberal Democrat conference about a new enquiry into workers’ rights, launching a wide-ranging employment review to help clarify the employment status of workers. 

In his announcement, Cable said, “One of the most striking features of our recession has been the high levels of employment that our workforce has maintained during some very trying times. Employers were resourceful in the jobs they continued to offer and employees remained flexible in the work patterns and pay they agreed to. That was the right thing to do at the time to keep Britain working.

“However now the economy is firmly on the road to recovery, it is important that the fruits of the recovery are shared by all. Some types of contracts which offer fewer employment rights, and which were never designed to be widely used, have become much more commonplace.”

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) have responded to Vince Cable’s speech:

Chief executive of the REC, Kevin Green, said, “One in three people in Britain has worked as an agency worker, freelancer or contractor at some point in their careers. It is a mainstream part of our labour market and a positive choice for more and more individuals, as well as offering practical options for employers who need to manage fluctuations in demand and competing business pressures. 

“We will work closely with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills as they conduct this enquiry and we are keen to participate by providing evidence and research. Dr Cable must be sure to avoid proposing changes that would have any kind of detrimental impact on the UK’s successful, flexible labour market which has kept record numbers of people in employment and avoided the problems faced by many of our European neighbours throughout the downturn.”

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