TUC insecure work report

The TUC have published a special edition of their Jobs and Recovery monitor,and this time it’s focussed on Insecure Work [PDF]. From the exec summary…

The coronavirus pandemic has exposed the reality of insecure work in the UK. Care workers, delivery drivers and shopworkers played a crucial role in keeping society

Meanwhile, in sectors like hospitality many insecure workers often found themselves without work. This research shows:

  • there are 3.6 million insecure workers in this country

  • insecure work is pushing risk onto workers: more than half of insecure workers, including three quarters of people on zero-hours contracts had their hours cut due to the pandemic

  • employers are increasingly scheduling and cancelling shifts at short notice with 84 per cent of zero-hours contract workers offered work at less than a day’s notice

  • the main reason workers take on zero-hours work is because it is the only form available.

… and it concludes that….

“It is vital that the government urgently bring forward an employment bill and take steps to stamp out insecure work as the country begins its recovery.”

Bectu would agree with pretty well all of this without demur, barring one observation:

The entertainment industry does have some people who take zero-hours work because they want to do it. The combination of an early-stage freelance career and zero-hours contract working is one that some people in this sector (perhaps more than most other sectors) would actively choose.

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