Northumberland Labour is supporting the party’s national policy of creating a single status of ‘worker’ with rights from day one of employment.

Single status of ‘worker’ would replace the three existing employment categories and remove qualifying periods for basic rights and protections to give workers Day One rights in the job.

As part of Labour’s plan to end insecure employment, all workers would receive rights and protections including Statutory Sick Pay, National Minimum Wage entitlement, holiday pay, paid parental leave and protection against unfair dismissal. Alongside Labour’s commitment to extend Statutory Sick Pay to the self-employed, this would make 6.1 million additional working people eligible to claim Statutory Sick Pay.

The proposal follows a number of legal cases in the gig economy where the central dispute was whether the claimant was a worker, and therefore entitled to the minimum wage and holiday pay, or self-employed.

Northumberland Labour Councillor Lynne Grimshaw: “Eleven years of Tory rule have chipped away at hard-won employment rights for working people.

“In Northumberland, we’ve seen more and more in-work poverty. Even in work families can’t afford to feed their children and are relying on food banks. The removal of sick pay meant people who are genuinely ill cannot afford to take time off to have treatment and recover. The trickle-down economy, where the riches of wealthy business owners would reach ordinary people, just doesn’t work. Instead what we’ve seen over the past 11 years is the rich getting richer and ordinary people getting poorer, coupled with rights being taken away so working people have little or no job security or decent pay.

“In Northumberland we're pleased Labour is tackling this issue and setting out its stall on what a future Labour government will do.”
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