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Vince Cable: We'll ban zero-hours 'exclusivity' clauses

BUSINESS Secretary Vince Cable announced a ban on “exclusivity” clauses in zero-hours contracts yesterday.

The clauses, which stipulate that employees cannot accept work from other employers even though they are not guaranteed any hours, was an abuse of the “flexibility these contracts offer,” Mr Cable said.

But Labour and trade union leaders said it was not nearly enough to end the burgeoning use of zero-hours contracts.

Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna slammed the fact that the exploitative contracts have “become the norm in parts of our economy” under the coalition’s disastrous rule.

“The government has watered down people’s rights at work and has failed to match Labour’s plans to outlaw zero-hours contracts where they exploit people,” he charged.

And Unite assistant general secretary Steve Turner said the only winner from such contracts was the employer.

“These measures do nothing to target the insecurity or uncertainty of zero-hours contracts,” he pointed out.

“The one change that really would make a difference would be for employers to have to guarantee their staff a minimum number of paid hours each week,” TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said.

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