Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Lib Dems see off Beecroft Report

Tough though these last two year have been, there are some times I am really glad we are in there holding the Tories back.

Make no mistake, the proposals for employers to basically hire and fire at will, and for public bodies to privatise services without protection of employees' rights, having been received by the Government  last October, would have been in the Queen's Speech this May if it hadn't been for the Liberal Democrats.

It strikes me as very odd that people think that the reason we are in this mess is because our workers are lazy. I thought the evidence pointed to destructive and unwise actions of bankers out to make money for themselves. And then continuing to award themselves humungous bonuses.

Vince Cable was pretty clear yesterday when he said:
"British workers are very co-operative and they are very flexible, so we don't need to scare the wits out of workers with threats to dismiss them. It is completely the wrong approach."
Now Nick Clegg has made it clear that he opposes the plans:
 I don't support them and I never have, for the simple reason that I have not seen any evidence yet that creating industrial scale insecurity amongst millions of workers is a way of securing new jobs.
But my absolute very favourite is the unnamed Liberal Democrat MP who told Total Politics that the report was, frankly, s**t and started to pick on grammatical and spelling mistakes in it. Pure, dead, brilliant. There are so many of our lot that this could be, and I would certainly expect our lot to be as robust as that. It's nice when it happens though.

Thankfully, Beecroft and his mad ideas to make more money for the rich at the expense of those who actually do the hard work are set to be consigned to the recycling. Should the Tories ever find themselves governing alone, these will be back.

I think it would be good, though, if Vince employed Jennie as his SpAd. We'd have to get rid of that union proposal, of course, but her point is that it's possible to simplify regulations to the workers' benefit is a good one.


Rodger said...

You obviously have no experience of employing people. I thought the idea was to reduce unemployment. The inability to sack unsuitable staff quickly and easily hinders this process. Ask any owner of a small or medium size business

Adrian Cruden said...

Rodger, I've worked in HR for over 20 years and it has always been resonably easy to dismiss people who are poor performers or commit misconduct as long as you follow a fair and basic process. Employment law exists to prevent people being fired at will without a process - but unfortunately, before he became Energy Secretary, Ed Davey piloted BIS legislation through parliament, which came into effect on 1 April this year, extending from one to two years the period of time in which there is no protection at all from unfair dismissal for new employees.

Beecroft was always a bit of a straw dog to make the changes the Govt has and is bringing in (for example, current consultation on abolishing low level protection against discrimination by third parties against staff) not so unreasonable in spite of it taking key aspects of employment protection back to the days of Thatcher.

Roger said...

No it is not reasonably easy to sack poor performers. Again ask any s&m size business. You refer to your work in HR
Which suggests a larger organization that could cope easier with these problems. Think of the smaller people and lone traders. Employing staff can be a nightmare and is avoided at all cost. Not helpful to the unemployed is it?

Unknown said...

Well, actually, Roger, I have fairly extensive experience of employing people in small enterprises. I see them as incredibly valuable and therefore it is extremely important to me that they should be treated well and fairly. And, do you know what? If you do that, you get the very best out of them in return.

It is already easy enough to sack people.


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