A new piece of legislation announced by the Government could have a detrimental impact on those working in the hospitality and retail sectors.
Elements of the Employment (miscellaneous provisions) Bill, which was published yesterday, will put particular pressure on organisations operating in the retail and hospitality sectors, says North West based employment law specialists HR Team.
“This legislation introduces significant improvements to employee protection in the State but it will not come without significant cost to both organisations and in some cases their staff,” says HR Team Director Martina McAuley.
“The move will come as a welcome relief to employees on zero hour contracts and introduce sensible measures to ensure employers establish terms and conditions at the beginning of employment.
“However, provisions for the ongoing review of minimum hours contracts will mean significant restructuring for many businesses. In sectors such as hospitality and retail the restructuring may well result in people losing their jobs.
“It is common practice for employers operating in these sectors to offer contracts for 15 or 20 hours a week but to regularly roster staff for more hours. Under this new legislation, if the average hours over 18 months or more is higher, then employees are entitled to contracts which reflect the increase in hours,” she explains.
“This scenario will leave employers faced with a ‘rob Peter to pay Paul’ situation which could result in redundancies. If employers are forced to increase the number of contracted hours for certain staff members then they will have to budget accordingly by letting other employees go,” Ms McAuley says.
She adds: “All employers should take note of the legislation and how the changes will affect their organisations. Employers who are unsure how it affects their organisation should seek professional advice to ensure compliance because the consequences of non-compliance could be very costly.”Tags: