The Conservatives have released their manifesto this week ahead of the General Election on 4 July 2024, setting out their plans if they stay in power. We look at the Party’s employment law related pledges.

  • The Conservatives’ manifesto includes a commitment to make new laws to clarify that the protected characteristic of sex in the Equality Act 2010 means biological sex.
  • They will increase the National Living Wage to around £13 an hour by the end of the next Parliament (in 5 years).
  • The Conservatives have also said that they will:
  • Overhaul the fit note process so that people are not signed off sick by default
  • Create 100,000 more apprenticeships in England every year by the end of the next Parliament
  • Introduce a legal cap on migration that will fall every year of Parliament
  • Adjust the immigration process for overseas workers by increasing visa fees and requiring health checks, and
  • Keep removing EU laws from the statute books.
    • Although not mentioned in their manifesto, it is likely that Bills such as the Bullying and Respect at Work Bill will continue to make progress through Parliament if the Conservatives win the election.

Liberal Democrats set out plans for workplace reform if they are successful in the General Election

The Liberal Democrats have also launched their manifesto this week with a focus on pay and family rights. We look at the key pledges that could affect employers.

  • The Liberal Democrats’ manifesto includes a proposal to give everyone a new right to flexible working and every disabled person the right to work from home if they want to, unless there are significant business reasons which mean that it isn’t possible.
  • They would also increase the minimum wage for care workers and people on zero hours contracts; make statutory sick pay (SSP) available to everyone; enhance family leave and pay and make it available to self-employed people; introduce paid carer’s leave and neonatal care leave; and make ‘caring’ and ‘care experience’ protected characteristics.
    • Other promises include:
      • Requiring large employers to monitor and publish data on gender, ethnicity, disability, and LGBT+ employment levels, pay gaps and progression, and publish five-year aspirational diversity targets
      • Extending the use of name-blind recruitment processes in the public sector and encouraging its use in the private sector
      • Establishing a new ‘dependent contractor’ employment status in between employment and self-employment
      • Bringing in the right to request a fixed-hours contract after 12 months for zero hours and agency workers, not to be unreasonably refused
      • Introducing Adjustment Passports to record adjustments and equipment a disabled person has received and ensuring equipment stays with them if they change jobs.

Here are webinar dates for your diary:

  • The do’s and don’ts for making a deduction from your employee’s pay – Mon, July 8th, 2024 | 2.00pm start – Register Here
  • Unpacking the HR Disciplinary process – Mon, July 15th, 2024 | 2.00pm start – Register Here
  • HR essentials: What rights do parents have at work? – Mon, July 22nd, 2024 | 2.00pm start – Register Here
  • TUPE transfers: how to navigate the legal risks – Mon, July 29th, 2024 | 2.00pm start – Register Here
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