Zeroing in: balancing protection and flexibility in the reform of zero-hours contracts

Document type
Alakeson, Vidhya; D'Arcy, Conor
Resolution Foundation
Date of publication
25 March 2014
Social welfare
Material type

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There is still uncertainty over the number of workers employed on zero-hour contracts with official estimates being revised upwards to around 600,000 while other studies have put the figures as high as 1 million. In many cases workers have not realised they are employed on zero-hours contracts until their hours have been changed. The use of zero hours contracts should be reformed to ensure that flexibility can be maintained and workers' rights strengthened to help eradicate misuse. This report makes a number of recommendations that respond to these concerns and seek to strike a better balance, providing protection and choice for workers while ensuring flexibility is maintained for employers.

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