The Government seems determined to remove employment rights by some means or other.
We have talked before about plans to simply abolish the right to claim for Unfair Dismissal –
At the Conservative Party’s Annual Conference, the Chancellor has today announced plans to force new starters to effectively sell their rights in return for shares. This will extend to basic rights such as Unfair dismissal and Redundancy –
It will also increase to 16 weeks the notice that returning mums will have to give of their intention to go back to work after maternity leave.
Existing staff will not be forced to take part.
There is still an element of compulsion here which is effectively taking away rights which workers in this country have enjoyed for decades under different ruling parties. A promise of shares is a poor price to pay for such fundamental rights. If a company is not performing well the value of the shares could collapse leaving the workforce with no rights and worthless shares.
The proposal also assumes that staff are only interested in money. Most would prefer be able to go to work and have the security that they cannot be sacked at the whim of bosses. No amount of shares can compensate for that. Tribunals can order bosses to re-instate staff who are wrongly sacked. There can be no re-instatement if someone has been forced to sell off their rights.
This seems to be a poorly considered proposal.
Employees are bound to feel that their rights are being sold off. Employers themselves are not crying out for a wholesale removal of rights –
So we can anticipate strong opposition from all sides and hopefully this idea will be consigned to the scrapheap where it belongs!