The Workers (Predictable Terms and Conditions) Bill
Throughout 2023 we’re expecting a number of legislative changes to come into force, amongst them is The Workers (Predictable Terms and Conditions) Bill.
As part of the Good Work Plan produced back in 2017, was the recommendation to allow workers with no fixed working hours the right to request a more predictable working pattern.
The review focused on the “one sided flexibility” workers experience when on zero-hour contracts, due to the lack of guarantee of work but the expectation from their employers to pick up shifts at short notice.
With this in mind, the new Bill sets out to combat the imbalance in the working relationship by allowing workers the right to make an application to change their work pattern to make it more predictable.
Some key points we know so far:
- Workers will have to have worked a minimum period of 26 weeks.
- Workers will be entitled to make up to two applications in a 12-month period.
- The application will need to specify what change is being requested and when the change it become effective.
- Employers will not be required to accept applications but will need to justify their grounds for refusal.
The Bill comes as part of a package of policies the government is supporting to further workers’ rights across the country, including:
- supporting parents of babies who need neonatal additional care with paid neonatal care leave.
- requiring employers to ensure that all tips, gratuities, and service charges received must be paid to workers in full.
- offering pregnant women and new parents greater protection against redundancy.
- entitling unpaid carers to a period of unpaid leave to support those most in need.
- providing millions of employees with a day one right to request flexible working, and a greater say over when, where, and how they work.
These policies will increase workforce participation, protect vulnerable workers, and level the playing field, ensuring unscrupulous businesses don’t have a competitive advantage.