Corporate Governance reforms offer greater transparency, but no real change

29 August 2017

By Sarah Glenister, National Development Officer, IER

Launching a consultation into Corporate Governance at the end of 2016, the government announced that workers needed a stronger voice to ensure businesses operated with regard to the interests of their workforce, and to tackle excessive corporate pay. But in her foreword, Theresa May reassured employers that her party remains "unequivocally and unashamedly pro-business" and that the motivation for reform was to protect the reputation of the free market at a time of surging wage inequality. It should not surprise us, then, that proposals published today in response to that consultation offer little more than superficial changes that give the appearance of reform without actually affecting it.

It's the Common Law wot won it

31 July 2017

By Michael Ford QC, Professor of Law University of Bristol and Counsel for the EHRC in the UNISON case

As described by one commentator, the Supreme Court judgment in R (UNISON) v Lord Chancellor [2017] UKSC 51 is "the biggest single victory in the history of employment law". At a stroke, the Supreme Court declared unlawful the fees which for more than four years rendered many employment rights illusory in practice. The judgment also has very important implications for the effective protection of legal rights beyond the workplace, and its reasoning will echo in domestic and international constitutional law for many years to come.

How we can build on Unison's tribunal fees success

28 July 2017

Workers across the UK will be delighted with this week's Supreme Court decision that employment tribunal fees are unlawful, leading to their immediate repeal and pressure on the government to commit to repaying the £32 million it has charged claimants over the last four years as quickly as possible.

Supreme Court Ruling On Tribunal Fees Shows Unions Are A Public Good

27 July 2017

By Gregor Gall, Professor of Industrial Relations, Bradford University

UNISON’s victory over the government at the Supreme Court on the issue of the introduction of fees for Employment Tribunal applications is the most recent example of how unions are a ‘public good’. This does not just mean a force for good but a good (as in a service) for, and to, the public at large, covering those who are not union members and may even be antagonist to unions or anti-union.

Taylor tinkers and employees will still be exploited

14 July 2017

By Gregor Gall, Professor of Industrial Relations, University of Bradford

It was always likely to happen and now it has - the much awaited publication of The Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices called 'Good Work' eschews using serious state intervention to fix the worst excesses of exploitation in the modern neo-liberal labour market in Britain.

Where is workers' voice in Taylor's Review?

11 July 2017

By John Hendy QC, IER Chair

Changes to the law to protect the rights of those who work for a living are essential. It is doubtful if the changes proposed by theTaylor Review are anything like radical enough. They appear to ignore the fact that many gig workers are already 'workers' with rights to a number of employment rights. And the proposals go nowhere near far enough to deal with the problem of zero-hours contracts for the vast majority of the 2.7 million workers on such contracts.

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