Labour Market

It is not the Government’s role to be accountable for good quality work



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IEA reacts to the Government's response to the Taylor review

Commenting on the Government’s response to the Taylor Review, Mark Littlewood, Director General at the Institute of Economic Affairs said:

“The Government often declares that the UK is open for business, yet is threatening to pile more onerous regulations and costs onto employers. These would inevitably be passed on to consumers and workers themselves.

“By reducing the flexibility of the contracts people can enter into, these rules will reduce choice and impede workers and employers from finding mutually agreeable terms as technology changes, reducing the number of jobs in the areas affected.

“Employment Tribunals can be highly subjective and a threat of quadruple fines may worry businesses into settling in advance when they may not need too. Internship rules don’t require legislation, just interpretation of minimum wage rules, which is happening already.

“Repealing laws allowing agencies to employ workers on cheaper rates – the Swedish derogation exemption – would ignore the benefits to workers of this arrangement, which usually mean people are paid between jobs by agencies. It would reduce options for both employers and workers, and may increase job insecurity for some agency workers.

“Many of these new practices will constrain workers’ choices, reduce employment flexibility, reduce employment levels and, ultimately, slow economic growth. The government can create the conditions for employment but need not be accountable for its quality.”

Notes to editors: 

For media enquiries please contact Nerissa Chesterfield, Communications Officer: [email protected] or 0207 799 8920 or 07791 290 268.

To read the IEA’s response to the Taylor review, published in July 2017, click here.

The mission of the Institute of Economic Affairs is to improve understanding of the fundamental institutions of a free society by analysing and expounding the role of markets in solving economic and social problems and seeks to provide analysis in order to improve the public understanding of economics.

The IEA is a registered educational charity and independent of all political parties.

Further IEA Reading: Working to Rule – The Damaging Economics of UK Employment Regulation