Britain should give more rights to gig economy workers: BBC
A British government-commissioned report is to recommend that those working in the so-called “gig economy” for firms like taxi app Uber, receive rights such as sick pay and holiday entitlement, the BBC reported yesterday. Last year, Prime Minister Theresa May set up a review into modern employment practices after an outcry over the increasing use of zero-hour contracts and the rising number of selfemployed people working for apps such Uber and food courier Deliveroo.
Firms say the burgeoning “gig economy”, in which people can work simultaneously for different companies without fixed contracts, gives greater flexibility to both them and their staff but such practices have been criticised as exploitative by unions. In Britain, the self-employed have no entitlement to employment rights beyond basic health and safety and antidiscrimination laws. Regular workers receive entitlements such as annual leave, rest breaks and the minimum wage. The review, due to be published on Tuesday, will recommend that ministers create a new type of worker called a “dependent contractor”, the BBC said, granting greater entitlements.
The review will also call for firms to be obliged to show that a person working for them is able to earn at least 1.2 times the national living wage, which stands at 7.50 pounds ($9.65) an hour for the over-25s, by calculating the average number of tasks worked. Britain’s business ministry declined to comment on the report’s findings when contacted by Reuters yesterday. —Reuters