Received from: Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers
Congress notes the significant ongoing impact of inflation. According to an Usdaw survey of thousands of low-paid workers in May 2023:
i. 85 per cent of workers feel financially worse off than last year
ii. Nearly three-quarters have struggled to pay energy bills in the last year
iii. 74 per cent reported that financial worries are impacting their mental health.
Congress believes that our weak employment rights framework is at the heart of the cost-of-living crisis. One-sided flexibility, where flexibility benefits the employer at the expense of employees, means it is too easy and too cheap for employers to change shifts or cut hours at short notice. Furthermore, short and zero-hours contracts rob workers of financial certainty. Workers need more security, more predictable working patterns and more hours.
Congress welcomes the Labour Party’s commitment to implementing a new deal for workers, including provisions to tackle one-sided flexibility and insecure work. Congress believes the measures outlined by Labour, including trade union access rights and recognition, introducing a right to a normal hours contract and ensuring workers get reasonable notice of shift changes, will be transformative.
Congress believes this agenda should be a central part of Labour’s next manifesto. Congress resolves for the TUC to:
a. continue to campaign for the development and implementation of a comprehensive new deal for workers
b. establish a working group of affiliates to look at the technical elements of introducing and enforcing the new deal proposals around tackling one-sided flexibility and insecure work
c. work collectively with Labour-affiliated unions to bring these proposals to life.
Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers