Election 2017 result - Employment update Jun 2017
In the aftermath of Election Day on June 8th 2017, the political landscape remains uncertain. So what would a Government comprising of the Conservatives and the DUP mean for businesses going forward? The following summary may be of help:
Wages & Holidays
National living wage will rise “in line with average earnings by 2022”. Its commitment to this rate increasing to 60% of median hourly earnings by 2020 (around £8.75) remains.
They want the National Living Wage to continue increasing but haven’t stated by how much.
The Party will deliver the biggest expansion of worker’s rights by any Conservative government. This includes a statutory right to a year’s unpaid leave to care for a relative, measures to protect employees’ pensions, and a guarantee that workers’ current rights will remain unchanged through the Brexit process.
Budget pledge of worker representation on boards for listed companies, although there will not be a requirement for a specific worker representative on the board – this “voice” can be achieved through an advisory panel or a non-executive director.
Immigration & Brexit
The Party will stick by pledges made in David Cameron’s 2010 manifesto to cut net migration to “tens of thousands” – latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show the current level to be 273,000.
Double the immigration skills charge levied on companies employing migrant workers to £2000 by 2022.
Enact the Great Repeal Bill, which converts EU law into UK law, meaning existing workers’ rights would continue to be available in UK law at the point at which we leave the EU.
The party favours a softer Brexit to avoid a hard border with Ireland.
Childcare, Parental leave, and Employee Wellbeing
Pledge to give workers a statutory right to a year’s unpaid leave to care for a relative, and grant a two week period of paid leave for parents whose child has died.
Committed to a new child care strategy that supports greater flexibility in the starting age of children commencing nursery or primary education.
Diversity & Inclusion
The Conservatives would extend current pay gap reporting requirements; larger employers would be obliged to publish a “race pay gap” as well as a gender pay gap. The Conservatives would aim to get one million more people with disabilities into employment over the next decade, providing employers the support needed to hire and retain those with disabilities.
The Party are against same-sex marriage.
Taxes & Pensions
The personal income tax allowance would be increased to £12,500, with the higher tax rate starting at £50,000. After abandoning proposals to increase national insurance contributions for the self-employed, Chancellor Philip Hammond has not ruled out future rises in the next Parliament.
Pledge to scrap the ‘Triple Lock’ on pensions.
The Party are calling for the ‘Triple Lock’ on pensions to be retained, which guarantees a yearly rise of at least 2.5 per cent.
Committed to delivering a 12.5% corporation tax rate in 2018.
They would also increase the personal tax allowance to £12,500.
Will replace 13,000 existing technical qualifications with new qualifications, known as T-levels in subjects including construction, creative and design, digital, engineering and manufacturing, and health and science.
Establish new institutes of technology, “backed by leading employers”, and link these to Universities in every major city in England. It will stick by its promise to create 3 million new apprenticeships by 2020.
Will align skills provision from colleges/universities to match the need of Companies and Foreign Direct Investment, thus creating an integrated Enterprise and Skills Department.
There is obvious uncertainty following this election as talks continue between the Conservatives and DUP, and there could yet be further change depending on the outcome of those negotiations. We will however be monitoring this closely to review any policy changes that would affect your business.
Tamar HR will provide a further update once the government position is clearer.