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Government reforms: Election fever – focus on the future

election-250It’s only just over two months until the election on 7 May 2015. Whoever wins there will be changes in store for employers. Indeed, the three main political parties have already given an indication of these at their party conferences in Autumn 2014 and further announcements are likely in the period leading up to the election.

We provide a summary below of some of the key proposals announced so far:


Bill of Rights: Introducing a new British Bill of Rights, to replace the Human Rights Act 1998.

Enhanced Redundancy Payments: Capping enhanced redundancy payments paid to public sector employees at £95,000.

Family Friendly: Potentially adding maternity pay for self-employed mothers to their election manifesto

Industrial action: Significant changes to the existing rules on industrial action, including:

Migrant Workers: Preventing the trafficking of workers through the Modern Slavery Bill.

Zero-hours contracts: Preventing the use of exclusivity clauses in zero-hours contracts, to ensure that such workers can undertake work for other employers.


Apprenticeships: Ensuring the provision of high quality apprenticeships are a pre-requisite of any bid for significant Government contracts and requiring large firms to offer apprenticeships in return for hiring workers from outside the UK.

Equal Pay: Promoting equal pay by increasing transparency and requiring companies to publish details of average pay.

Family Friendly:

Harassment: Reinstating the third party harassment provisions in the Equality Act 2010 to ensure that employees are protected from harassment at work. (These provisions were repealed by the current Government with effect from 1 October 2013).

Migrant workers:

National Minimum Wage:

Reward: Increasing transparency on reward by requiring companies to publish the ratio of pay of their top earners with the average employee, as well as the pay of the top ten earners outside the boardroom and ensure there is an employee on remuneration committees.

Tribunal Fees: Reviewing the existing system of Tribunal fees, but it has been reported that rather than abolishing Tribunal fees Labour will introduce a better means testing system.

TUPE: Review the TUPE rules.

Zero-hours contracts: Restricting the use of zero-hours contracts by:

Liberal Democrats

Equal Pay: Making the disclosure of equal pay information compulsory for companies employing over 250 people (under section 78 Equality Act 2010).

National Minimum Wage:

Paternity Leave: Granting fathers an additional four weeks’ paternity leave.

Recruitment: Making recruitment in the public sector anonymous, to reduce the possibility of discrimination during the recruitment process.


It really will be all change if UKIP are voted in. They want to:

Whatever the election outcome, it will mean more change so watch this space for future developments…

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