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Consultation on zero hours exclusivity ban 25/08/2014 A consultation is underway to help identify and close potential loopholes in plans to ban the use of exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts

Consultation on zero hours exclusivity ban

Business Secretary Vince Cable has launched a consultation to help identify and close potential loopholes in plans to ban the use of exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts (ZHC).

Exclusivity clauses prevent workers on zero hours contracts from taking work elsewhere even when their employer provides no work.

The Government wants to find out whether a minority of unscrupulous employers may attempt to circumvent the ban by offering contracts that could, for example, guarantee just one hour of work. The consultation seeks views on the best method to prevent this from happening, and asks people whether they think this route may be exploited and whether the Government should take pre-emptive steps.

It also proposes options, such as civil penalties, that workers could use to seek justice if they are treated unfairly by their employer because they found work elsewhere while on a zero hours contract.

“We are tightening the screws on rogue employers who try to abuse workers on zero hours contracts,” said the Business Secretary. “We are looking closely at any potential loopholes that could arise from a ban, to ensure that these are closed off and no one can get round the new law. We are also ensuring there is access to justice for workers treated unfairly.”

In addition, the Government has announced that business representatives and unions will work together to develop sector-specific codes of practice to help guide the fair use of zero hours contracts, and that it would help improve the information available to individuals and employers on using these contracts.

 

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