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Why are we still debating people’s right to stability?

Credit: Jeremy Seitz Flickr

A cleaning company in London is guaranteeing employees work and a London living wage of £9.75 per hour.

Clean For Good, hopes to win business from established firms by promoting ethical principals according to the Guardian.

The industry is known for low wages, antisocial hours and poor working conditions.

The company is proud of having no zero hour contracts (ZHC) which have been a point on contention in the UK for years.

ZHC’s means the employer doesn’t have to provide any minimum hours of work.

The majority of these contracts are in hospitality, arguably one of the most important job sectors in the UK.

The Office Of National Statistics published a report last month detailing that 880,000 people in the UK are on ZHC’s. .

Despite this being the lowest number in three years, the majority of people working these jobs want more than the average 26 hours of work they are getting per week.

The problem with ZHC’s is that there is an exclusivity clause meaning employees cannot work another job despite wanting or needing to.

Workers can be left financially insecure, because employers can cancel work last minute or change their hours without notice.

They are also able to avoid obligations like sick and maternity pay.

Workers are being exploited so that businesses can stay flexible within changing economic conditions?

More than half of people on zero hours contracts are women and a large amount are young people and students.

The shadow business secretary, Rebecca Long-Bailey described how people live under these circumstances; “not knowing how much they’ll earn from week to week, unable to budget for basic necessities and unsure if they can even pay the rent.”

This begs the question, why have they not been banned yet and why aren’t we prioritising stability?

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