4,800 Scarborough employees in temporary jobs could be missing out on crucial rights, say union bosses

One in seven Scarborough employees are in temporary jobs, with trade union leaders warning they may be missing out on crucial workplace rights.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 28th August 2019, 2:59 pm
One in seven Scarborough workers are in temporary jobs
One in seven Scarborough workers are in temporary jobs

New estimates from the Office of National Statistics show that 4,800 people in Scarborough are employed in non-permanent jobs.

They include fixed-term contracts and agency, casual or seasonal work.

That’s 14% of employees in the area – one of the highest rates in the UK, where the average is 5%.

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According to the Trade Union Congress, temporary workers are part of a larger group of people in “precarious work”.

The TUC estimates that one in nine UK workers are in precarious work, including staff on zero-hours contracts and self-employed people making less than minimum wage.

General secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Lack of reliable income is not the only problem for people in this type of work.

“Insecure workers too often miss out on important rights like sick pay, parental leave or paid holidays.

“The Government should give all workers the same basic rights.”

Gail Cartmail, assistant general secretary at trade union Unite, said the truth about insecure work in the UK is “far worse” than the official figures show.

Research by the TUC found that the UK’s gig economy workforce has doubled since 2016. Nearly one in 10 adults are now working for app-based companies, such as Uber and Deliveroo, at least once a week.

Gig economy workers are currently classed as self-employed.

As a result, they are not entitled to sick pay, paid holidays or annual leave.

The majority of these workers have multiple jobs, and use platform work to supplement other forms of income.

Although there is no data on how many people in Scarborough are in gig economy jobs, 26% of workers are self-employed, and 4% have second jobs.

The Government’s Good Work Plan could improve the rights of temporary and gig economy workers. It includes scrapping a legal loophole which enables some firms to pay agency workers less than permanent staff.