Employment Law and the Election

During the recent party political conference season, all main parties gave us an insight into what, they feel, are the most important issues on the employment law agenda. Each party set out what they intend to implement, should they be successful in the General Election next year. A brief summary of the main points is below:


  • Zero hours contracts – ban exclusivity clauses which state that the worker cannot work elsewhere;
  • Industrial action – further definitions on what is lawful strike action by employees; giving employers more notice of strike action.


  • Minimum wage – to increase to £8 per hour by 2020; increase fines for non-compliance; provide tax break to employers who sign up to the Living Wage;
  • Zero hours contracts – abolish exclusivity clauses; give workers the right to demand a regular contract where they have been working regular hours; an automatic right to a fixed hours contract after a specified period; compensation if shifts are cancelled at short notice;
  • ET fees – abolish current ET system and replace it with a system where people are prevented from making a claim because they cannot afford it;
  • Agency workers – abolish the system under which employers can avoid equal pay liability;
  • Self employment – give self employed people some employment rights.

Liberal Democrats

  • Zero hours contracts – abolish exclusivity clauses;
  • Paternity leave – increase entitlement to 6 weeks;
  • Minimum Wage – significantly increase the apprenticeship minimum wage;
  • Public sector recruitment – make all job application forms anonymous to prevent discrimination.


  • Zero hours contracts – introduce a zero hours code of conduct which aims to make employers offer fixed term contracts to people on a zero hours contract for a year;
  • British jobs for British workers – it will not be discrimination to favour a British unemployed worker under the age of 25 in favour of a more qualified/experiences foreign applicant;
  • Agency workers – the Agency Workers Regulations will be removed.

Green Party

  • Minimum Wage – national minimum wage will be turned into a genuine living wage.