Right to request fixed hours will be 'useless'...

Right to request fixed hours will be ‘useless’ in combatting insecure work, says Unite

23 May 2017

Britain’s largest union, Unite today (Tuesday 23 May) dismissed  a suggestion to offer workers the right to request fixed hours as ‘useless’ saying it would do nothing to combat the use of exploitative zero hours and short hours’ contracts.

Unite, which has been a vocal campaigning voice against the use of zero hours and exploitative work practices, responded to reports that the Taylor Review was considering backing the idea which is contained in the CBI’s submission to the review.

Commenting Unite assistant general secretary Steve Turner said: “Merely giving workers a ‘right to request’ fixed hours will not stop exploitative bosses or curb the use of zero hours and short hours’ contracts. It is a totally useless measure which will continue to see workers denied the security of knowing how much they earn from one week to the next. 

“With a shocking 3.8 million people experiencing in-work poverty it’s high time that work in this country paid and the misery of insecure work was eradicated. Workers shouldn’t be reduced to begging for more hours like Oliver Twist and should instead have the security of guaranteed hours. 

“An incoming government must act to end the abuse of zero hours and short hours’ contacts by following the lead of New Zealand by banning them. It must also strengthen workplace rights as part of a package for decent work to give workers security in the workplace and make work pay.” 


For further information please contact Unite head of media and campaigns Alex Flynn on 020 3371 2066 or 07967 665869. 

Notes to editors:

  • Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.