End to two-tier workforce in sight as Government does deal with unions

The
Government has agreed to end the ‘two-tier workforce’ in the public sector
after agreeing a deal with the unions.

Under
present arrangements, private sector contractors in the public sector can be
employed under worse pay and conditions than their public sector counterparts.

The
agreement, with the Transport & General Workers’ Union (T&G) and
Unison, would mean that staff recruited when a service is outsourced would have
to be employed on terms no less favourable than those assured to staff who are
transferred.

Two-tier
workforces in local government were banned last year, but health secretary John
Reid had previously blocked changes to the NHS on the grounds it would make
reform of the public services more difficult.

The
T&G hailed the agreement as a ‘historic breakthrough’, and said that many
of those who suffered the most from being employed by contractors, on poorer
pay and often no pension, were women.

By Michael Millar

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