Employers’ body attacks Labour position on zero-hours contracts

THE INSTITUTE of Directors slammed the Labour party’s stance on zero-hours contracts yesterday, defending the system as useful.

The statement came after Labour held a summit on the employment practice, citing a report by researchers at the Resolution Foundation.

According to the group, average hourly pay for someone on a zero-hours contract is £9, in comparison to £15 per hour for those on contracts with fixed hours.

Alexander Ehmann, the IoD’s head of employment policy, said: “Looking at the average figure doesn’t give us any useful guidance. The hourly wage for these employees, who make up less than one per cent of the workforce, is lower on average because they work typically in entry level roles, often in low-paid sectors such as retail and hospitality”.

Ehmann added: “For these employers, the flexibility allows them to create jobs that would otherwise be too risky while the recovery is still delicate”.

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development has recently suggested that as many as one million UK workers are on zero-hours contracts.

The Labour party’s shadow business secretary, Chuka Umunna, has stressed that banning such practices was not the policy of the Labour party.