Policy News Journal - 2014-15

 Whether a code of practice should be introduced covering the fair use of these contracts generally; and  How useful people found existing information, advice and guidance.

The key findings from that consultation were:

 83% supported a ban on exclusivity clauses in zero hours contracts;  71% felt that such a ban would not discourage employers from creating jobs; and  More should be done with regard to improving existing information, advice and guidance as only 14% found existing information ‘very helpful’, and 42% found existing information ‘not helpful’. In addition, some respondents believed that sector- specific codes of practice, developed by business groups and staff bodies, could benefit some sectors. The evidence collected over the past year suggests that zero hours contracts have generally been used responsibly in a range of sectors for many years. It has also shown that these contracts can support business flexibility, and provide individuals with more choice to combine work with other commitments. Nevertheless, evidence suggests that some abuse does take place. As a result the Government is now taking action by banning the use of exclusivity clauses in contracts that do not guarantee any hours. The next challenge is to ensure that any potential loopholes that could be used to avoid that ban are closed. Therefore, the Government has issued a further consultation asking for views on a range of potential actions it could take to tackle potential avoidance as well as considering routes for redress. The CIPP policy team has issued a survey to collect these views. The survey will close on 24 October and we would be very grateful if you could spare ten minutes to let us know what you think.

Impact assessments of the Small Business Bill published

22 October 2014

Impact assessments have been published by the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) summarising the cumulative effects of the proposed policies in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill. The impact assessments cover all aspects of the Bill which is currently going through Parliament. The proposed changes which most concern employers are probably those strengthening the measures to combat misbehaviour by company directors.

Office of National Statistics reports on the increased use of Zero Hours Contracts

2 March 2015

The Office of National Statistics (ONS) has reported on the increased number of people employed on zero hours contracts. During the period of October to December 2014 the number was 2.3 percent of all people in employment. The total number of all people employed on zero hours contracts in employment between October and December 2014 was 697,000. In the same period of October to December in 2013, this number was 1.9% of all people in employment or a total of 586,000.

It has been said that “any news is good news” and so it has not been possible for the ONS to say how much of the increase between 2013 and 2014 is due to a greater recognition, rather

CIPP Policy News Journal

08/04/2015, Page 101 of 521

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