The Department of Business Innovation and Skills has been forced to correct a misleading press release on zero hours contracts after claiming new rules on so-called ‘exclusivity clauses’ were in force when they were not. The government then failed to implement them before parliament was dissolved.
With the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act receiving royal assent on 26 March, BIS rushed out a press release (with quotes from Vince Cable and Matt Hancock) stating that exclusivity clauses — in which employees can be blocked from taking other jobs despite having no guaranteed hours — had been banned.
But this claim was ditched after HR consultant Craig Gordon pointed out that the secondary legislation required to bring the measure into force had not been passed. The department’s reported response when contacted by Gordon is comedy:
“Well, no-one has told us about this yet”
Now why would government ministers be claiming that they have banned exclusivity clauses in zero hours contract when they haven’t.
Is there an election on or something?