Cameron is reported to be right behind his friend's suggestions, and will lend his (light)weight (when not playing computer games or being photographed with important people) to the report. The idea is to remove as many of the obstacles to sacking people as possible and making life easier for bosses. The proposals include:
* An end to a mandatory 90-day consultation period when a company is considering redundancy programmes. Mr Beecroft recommends a 30-day period and an emergency five-day period if a company is in severe economic distress. (So tough luck if the company decides it is in a serious situation... and won't they all?)
* A cap on loss of earnings compensation for employees who make successful unfair dismissal claims. Payments can often total hundreds of thousands of pounds. (Well... that is what they would have earned if they hand't been unfairly dismissed, god knows directors and senior civil servants, not to mention MPs and cabinet members seem to enjoy that perk... will they be affected?)
* Major reform of the rights that workers are allowed to “carry” to new employers when they are the subject of a takeover. Currently, the rights, called transfer of undertakings (TUPE), can leave people in the same company working in the same job with different levels of rights for many years. (Jeez, I can see the fiddles in this one, specially coming from a venture capitalist)
* An end to provisions in the Equality Act which make employers liable for claims from employees for “third party harassment” — for example, customers making “sexist” comments to staff in a restaurant. The Government has already begun a consultation on the issue. (I guess that that might be fair enough, but staff shouldn't have to take sexist or racist crap from a customer; they should have the immediate right to take their own action...ie call the police, or give as good as they get, without fear of retribution from the employer.)
* Moving the responsibility to check on foreign workers’ eligibility to work in Britain from employers to the Border Agency or the Home Office. (That's it get the small state to do all the work... just remember the Border Agency couldn't find its backside with both hands...)
I hear an awful lot of complaints and moans about the 'human rights' that people have. But I've travelled quite a lot, and in quite a few cases to countries where people have very few human rights. Watch the next move to get rid of the minimum wage. The Tories did it before, which led to people working for as little as £1 an hour.
I'd caution to be very careful about letting the likes of Beecroft make government policy. He's interested in two things only. Himself and money...his.