1 April 2015
Miliband promises that labour will end the ‘epidemic’ of zero hours contracts.
UK companies used 1.8 million zero-hours contracts last summer, Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show. The contracts permit an employer to pick and choose a worker’s hours depending on demand. This allows them to maximise profits while the worker is not guaranteed any hours, financial stability or sick pay and benefits.
Addressing David Brown Gears in Huddersfield, Miliband said: “There is no greater symbol of an economy that doesn’t work than zero-hours contracts.
“We have an epidemic of zero-hours contracts in our country – there’s been a 20% increase in the last year alone – undermining hard work, undermining living standards, undermining family life. Because if you don’t know from one day to the next how many hours you’re going to be doing, how can you have any security for you and your family?”
“In our first year of government, Labour will pass a law that says if you’re working regular hours, you’ll get a regular contract… a legal right that will apply to all workers after 12 weeks,” he said.
“To anyone trying to raise a family on a zero-hours contract, you shouldn’t be left at the beck and call of an employer who can ask the world of you but can give you no security in return. It’s not fair, it’s not good for business and we’ll put a stop to it.”
“If it’s not good enough for us, it’s not good enough for you. It’s not good enough for Britain.”
Paul Kenny, GMB General Secretary, said “At long last we have a major
political party prepared to address and give rights to workers to shield
them from exploitation in their workplaces.
“At long last the damage of zero hours contracts is to be addressed. This
news will be welcomed by thousands of people for whom the world of work is a
“Voters are faced with a stark choice – a party governing in the interest of
corporate bosses with zero hours contracts and for tax breaks for the
wealthy elite or a party seeking to provide rights and protection for
“Hopefully David Cameron will find himself on a zero hours contract come May
For more information on zero-hours contracts, Re-regulating Zero Hours Contracts is available now.