New Gov guidance on workers’ rights released

By Nikkie Thatcher contact

- Last updated on GMT

Government advice: the new guidance has been labelled a 'one-stop shop' for workers and employers (image: Getty/skynesher)
Government advice: the new guidance has been labelled a 'one-stop shop' for workers and employers (image: Getty/skynesher)

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The Government has published new guidance for workers that aims to clarify their employment rights.

According to the Government, a person’s employment status is what defines the rights and protections they are entitled to at work.

This includes pay, leave and working conditions, which dictates the responsibilities an employer owes the worker.

The new guidance​, which the Government claimed would benefit gig economy workers most, includes advice for micro businesses, start ups and small to medium enterprises that have less capacity and legal expertise to understand the law.

It outlined the rights gig economy workers are entitled to such as national minimum wage and paid leave.

Gig economy workers

It comes after the Uber Supreme Court judgement, which held individuals in the gig economy can qualify as workers, resulting in them being entitled to core employment protections.

Business minister Jane Hunt said: “Today (Tuesday 26 July) we are tidying up the rules, helping workers understand their employment rights and find out if they are being treated fairly by their workplace.

“Importantly, this one-stop shop guidance is not just for workers – it will also give businesses the confidence and tools to better support their staff, helping to increase productivity and drive growth.”

The guidance was published alongside a response to a consultation on employment status, where a number of respondents called for additional clarity around the boundaries.

The announcement of the guidance followed the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) introduced new legislation that made it unlawful for employers to withhold tips from staff​.

Tips bill

While the new bill was expected to reassure staff across the sector, it was also noted there were some issues to be addressed.

UKHospitality (UKH) chief executive Kate Nicholls said: “Tips and service charges provide a significant and welcome boost to hospitality employees’ take-home cash.

“We’re delighted to see this proposed legislation recommend that employers can set a fair distribution policy for staff, meaning they all benefit. This should also reassure prospective hospitality sector workers at a time when the industry is seeking to fill vacancies.

“The Bill is certainly a good starting point, from which there are a few additional issues to address.

“These include the length of time necessary for businesses to adapt; the onerous levels of red tape required; the worrying need to disclose sensitive business information; and for tips to count towards earned income, thus helping those workers seeking mortgages.

Related topics: Legislation

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