London Daily

Focus on the big picture.

MPs call for workers' rights watchdog amid weak enforcement of labour protections

MPs call for workers' rights watchdog amid weak enforcement of labour protections

The BEIS committee heard evidence that a company can expect to be inspected by the National Minimum Wage team on average once every 500 years.
A cross party group of MPs has called on the government to create a workers rights watchdog after finding labour protections are poorly enforced.

The Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) committee heard evidence firms were only inspected by the national minimum wage team, on average, once every 500 years.

Following evidence gathering sessions with bosses of companies including P&O and Amazon, trades unions and business representatives the multi-party committee has published its report on the UK labour market.

In it, MPs call for the creation of a single workers' rights enforcement body to address poor enforcement which the report said is leaving workers vulnerable to "unscrupulous" employers.

Such a body had already been promised by the government in 2019 but BEIS committee chair and Labour MP Darren Jones said the government "really must get a move on".

"A one stop shop for workers and businesses would provide the clarity, security and effective oversight that is needed," he said.

Evidence to the inquiry, provided by UK charity, Unchecked, said that the UK had less than half the number of labour inspectors needed to reach international benchmarks.

Labour market rules enforcement is under-resourced and fragmented across a number of small agencies, the report also says.

Similarly, ministerial ownership of labour policy was found to be fragmented across many departments. The committee has called for the government to consider either setting up a new Ministry for Labour, appointing a new Minister for Labour in the Cabinet Office or establishing a new cabinet committee to coordinate labour market policy across Whitehall.

Another area of concern for the committee was the area of night-time working.

Damaging effects of night-time work, including increased risk of serious physical and mental health conditions, were highlighted in the report. Evidence had been given to the committee of higher divorce rates among night workers and, from Liminal Space consultancy that the economic cost of a lack of sleep is £50bn a year.

The government was called on to launch an investigation into the health and safety implications of night working, the report says.

The report was conducted partly in an effort to address tightness in the UK labour market, as unemployment has remained low and job vacancies have remained relatively high. At the same time the UK has a higher rate of so-called economic inactivity - when someone is neither in work nor looking for work - following the pandemic.

During the pandemic, some workers took early retirement. A poll of 1,031 people aged 45-60 commissioned by the committee found that although many of them took early retirement, others would return to work if suitably flexible roles with adequate protections allowed them to continue semi-retirement or their caring responsibilities.

But lack of protections around flexible working, compared with full or part-time work, acts as a barrier to re-entering the workforce, the report says.

The enquiry was launched in March 2022 and took in sessions between July 2022 and February 2023 where evidence was heard from the Office for National Statistics, business representatives, trades unions, trade bodies, recruitment specialists and career development experts.
Newsletter

Related Articles

London Daily
0:00
0:00
Close
Chaotic Portugal Win Over Turkey at Euro 2024
Global Headlines: Hajj Heatwave Tragedy, Flynn's Family Enterprise, and Rising Geopolitical Tensions
Political Shifts in France, Legal Battles in the UK, and Public Protests in Israel
UK's Richest Family Convicted for Exploiting Servants
Hollande Declares End to Macron’s Political Ascendancy
Hindujas Appeal Swiss Court's Human Trafficking Verdict
Prince William Celebrates Birthday at Taylor Swift Concert
Singapore to Implement Screen Time Regulations for Children
Hello and welcome back. Here we are with your latest news update from around the world.
Hello and welcome back. Here are today's top stories from around the world, you don't want to miss:
UK PM Sunak and the Election Betting Scandal
Climate Activists Target Taylor Swift's Private Jet in UK
United States Bans Kaspersky Antivirus
US to Supply Taiwan with Suicide Drones Amid Rising Tensions with China
Bodyguard of UK Prime Minister Arrested for Alleged Election Betting
Global Displacement Crisis: Record Numbers in 2023
Muslim Community Leader Criticizes Nigel Farage for Undermining Muslims
Melinda Gates Discusses 'Horrible' Divorce from Bill Gates
Child Obesity Surge in England: A Deep Concern
U.S. Sues Adobe Over Hard-to-Cancel Subscriptions
Deadly Heat Wave Claims Dozens of Lives During Hajj Pilgrimage in Mecca
Here are today's top worldwide stories you don’t want to miss:.
World’s Largest Pilot Union Calls to Eliminate Terms Like ‘Cockpit’ and ‘Manpower’ for Equity
Woman Suing UK Intel Services Denies China Spy Allegations
Iran Sentences Nobel Laureate Narges Mohammadi to 1-Year Prison Term for Propaganda
News roundup
Good day, everyone! We've got some gripping stories for you today, spanning from the Middle East to Europe, and even a touch of Hollywood.
Britain’s Refugee Visa Rules Stranding Children in War Zones
UK Elections Predict ‘Electoral Extinction’ for PM Sunak’s Conservative Party
Italian Activist Ilaria Salis Returns Home After Election to European Parliament
Good morning!
England Faces Serbia in Euro Opener with Defensive Concerns
Dermatologist Warns Against Sunbed Usage
Fake Pro-Reform UK Social Accounts and Their Influence on Elections
UK Man Jailed for Non-Consensual Condom Removal
Reform UK Surpasses Conservatives in Historic Poll
US, Britain, Canada Accuse Russia of Interference in Moldova’s Election
Taylor Swift Fans Create Seismic Activity in Edinburgh
Sunak Aide Under Investigation for Election Bet
Labour Leader Starmer Focuses on Wealth Creation for Upcoming UK Elections
G7 to Use Frozen Russian Assets for $50 Billion Ukraine Aid
Anti-Israel Irish MEP Clare Daly LOST her seat in the EU Election
Johnson & Johnson Settles Talc Safety Claims for $700 Million
EU Urged to Welcome Skilled Russians to Weaken Putin
EU Elections Overview: Far-Right Gains and Major Political Shifts
Israel Rescues Four Hostages from Gaza
Emmanuel Macron Calls for Snap Election
Jordan Bardella: Young Far-Right Leader Poised for Future Political Influence in France
World's Oldest Privately Owned Book Auctioned for $3.8 Million
Animal Rights Activists Deface King Charles' Portrait in Protest
×