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Plans to rip up UK workers’ rights post-EU branded ‘utterly appalling’ by Wales’ Brexit minister

14 Jan 2021 2 minute read
Jeremy Miles AM. Picture: National Assembly

Reported plans to rip up UK workers’ rights now that the UK is out of the EU have been branded “utterly appalling” by Wales’ Brexit minister.

Jeremy Miles, however, said that the plan to do away with worker protections enshrined in EU law, such as the 48-hour week, was “grimly predictable”.

According to the Financial Times, the package of deregulatory measures is being put together by the UK Government’s Business Department, with the approval of Downing Street.

The plans include:

  • Ending the 48-hour working week,
  • Changing the rules around allowing rest breaks at work
  • Not including overtime pay when calculating some holiday pay entitlements
  • Not requiring businesses to log the detailed, daily reporting of working hours

Ed Miliband, Labour’s business secretary, told the newspaper that ministers were “preparing to tear up their promises to the British people and taking a sledgehammer to workers’ rights”.

Conservative MP Kwasi Kwarteng, the Secretary of State for Business, however, dismissed the report.

“We are not going to lower the standards of workers’ rights,” he said. “The UK has one of the best workers’ rights records in the world – going further than the EU in many areas.

“We want to protect and enhance workers’ rights going forward, not row back on them.”

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