Employment legislation is to be under scrutiny as Vince Cable proposes changes to employment law, making it easier for employers to recruit staff, and also to dismiss them. The business secretary is considering one option of whether a business with 10 employees or less could dismiss members of staff without being taken to an employment tribunal, as long as they compensate the employee. The move could result in employees of a small business being unable to claim unfair dismissal.
The changes to employment legislation are intended to make it easier for businesses to recruit workers, without existing employees losing job security. The suggested changes have been condemned by the Labour Party and the unions. Mr Cable outlines his proposals during a speech, stating that it is necessary to reduce the lengthy process of employee dismissal, although workers would not lose their rights.
Employers will be given “protected conversations”, which will allow an employer to discuss sensitive subjects like early retirement and poor performance, without fear of being taken to an employment tribunal. Under the new procedures, employees would have to be employed for two years before being eligible for a tribunal. The existing rules give employees the right to approach an employment tribunal after just one year of employment.
GMB union general secretary, Paul Kenny believes the proposals would make it much harder for an employee who is a victim of bullying at work, victimised or treated unfairly, to take the employer to tribunal. However, business groups acknowledge the proposals as necessary changes which will make it easier for a business to employ.
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