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Employment Rights

Volume 467: debated on Thursday 22 November 2007

18. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what steps his Department has taken to raise the awareness of employment rights among employers and employees; and if he will make a statement. (166799)

The Businesslink.gov website for employers and the Direct.gov site for employees provide authoritative advice on the full range of employment rights and a range of practical interactive tools that enable users to tailor the advice to their needs.

In addition, the ACAS helpline deals with nearly one million inquiries from employers and employees each year; and my Department publishes the booklet “Individual Rights and Responsibilities of Employees: a Guide for Employers and Employees”.

My Department works closely with ACAS and Citizens' Advice to guide citizens and employers to the most appropriate source of information.

19. To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what steps his Department has taken to promote employment rights among low paid workers; and if he will make a statement. (166800)

People at work in Britain, particularly low paid workers, have benefited from the right to a minimum wage, paid holidays, rest breaks, time off for family emergencies, a cap on the working week and measures to support working parents; trade unions have the right to recognition by the employer where a majority of the workforce want it; part-time workers have the same rights as their full-time colleagues. The Government have introduced workplace protection against discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation, religion or belief and age; employees in larger organisations have rights to be informed and consulted about developments in the workplace.