Ban on exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts

Business Secretary Vince Cable has today announced plans to ban exclusivity clauses which prevent people on zero hours’ contracts from working for more than one employer.

Currently, such clauses apply even when no work is guaranteed, seriously undermining choice and flexibility for some 125,000 workers who are affected.

The ban is part of a clamp-down on unscrupulous practices in the workplace and will allow workers to look for additional sources of work to boost their income.

Business Secretary Vince Cable said:

“Zero hours contracts have a place in today’s labour market. They offer valuable flexible working opportunities for students, older people and other people looking to top up their income and find work that suits their personal circumstances.

But it has become clear that some unscrupulous employers abuse the flexibility that these contracts offer to the detriment of their workers. Today, we are legislating to clamp down on abuses to ensure people get a fair deal.

Last December, I launched a consultation into this issue. Following overwhelming evidence we are now banning the use of exclusivity in zero hours contracts and committing to increase the availability of information for employees on these contracts. We will also work with unions and business to develop a best practice code of conduct aimed at employers who wish to use zero hours contracts as part of their workforce.”

For more information on any aspect of employment law, please contact Vaishali Thakerar, Ashley Hunt or Carrie-Ann Randall at Lawson-West on 0116 212 1000.

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