In 2019 the Government put forward a list of Employment Law reforms that tackled various issues. Due to the pandemic the bill has unfortunately been delayed. It was also not mentioned in the Queen’s Speech this month.
When can we expect the Employment Bill?
As the Employment Bill was left from the Queen’s Speech, it is very much a guessing game of when we might see it introduced. A government spokesperson defended the lack of an employment bill in this year’s agenda. “Our ambitious legislative programme will enable us to deliver on priorities like growing the economy, which will in turn help address rising living costs and get people into good jobs.”
“We have a strong track record in supporting workers across the UK and protecting and enhancing their rights, including helping more people into work so there are now more employees on the payroll than ever before, raising the national living wage to its highest rate yet and cracking down on enforcing the minimum wage, which is one of the highest in the world.”
What might be included in the Employment Bill?
The measures expected to be included in the new Employment Bill are wide-ranging and include:
- Workplace sexual harassment and tribunal time limits: the time limit for bringing these cases to the employment tribunal is set to be extended from 3 months to 6 months.
- Carer’s leave rights: a new right to request up to one week of unpaid carer’s leave may apply from day one of employment.
- Neonatal pay and leave: parents of babies requiring neonatal care may be entitled to neonatal leave of up to 12 weeks.
- Flexible working: extend the right to make a flexible working request from day one of employment.
- New single labour market enforcement body: this could focus on protecting workers in relation to modern slavery, national minimum wage and SSP.
- Maternity leave rights: a new right could be created for pregnant employees at risk of redundancy to be offered suitable alternative employment.
- Tips: employers to pass on all tips and gratuities to their workers in full under the new bill.
While most companies may already may have these in place, some businesses do not and the reforms are needed to help protect employees. Early this year P&O Ferries sacked 800 staff without any consultation process highlighting the need for The Employment Bill to be passed sooner rather than later.
How we can help?
Our experts can advise you on all aspects of employment law which include; employment contracts, staff handbooks, grievance and disciplinary procedures, redundancy consultations and procedures and should matters get to an Employment Tribunal, we will be with you every step of the way to ensure you achieve the best possible outcome.