… in brief

This week’s news in brief

Poor literacy skills

One in five adults do not have the literacy or numeracy skills of most
children starting secondary school, according to a new report by the CBI and
the TUC. The report, Brushing up the basics, claims seven million adults have
basic skills difficulties – costing the UK economy about £10bn each year.  www.cbi.org.uk  www.tuc.org.uk

Urgent action needed

The Transport & General Workers’ Union says urgent action is needed by
the Government to end manufacturing job losses. T&G general secretary Bill
Morris said figures show that 10,000 manufacturing jobs a week have been lost
over the last three months, and that the Information and Consultation Directive
should be introduced immediately to help halt the slide.  www.tgwu.org.uk

Unemployment falls

New figures from the Office for National Statistics show the claimant count
has dropped by 4,500 to 940,500, leaving a jobless rate of 3.1 per cent.
However, the Government’s preferred measure – The Labour Force Survey (LFS) –
actually measured a rise in unemployment. LFS includes those out of work, but
not claiming benefits.  www.statistics.gov.uk

NATS faces action

The National Air Traffic Services is facing the threat of industrial action
after executives received large bonuses despite problems within the service.
Staff were unhappy to discover that a former deputy chairman and the CEO
received payments after the move to new headquarters. NATS said any strike
would be wholly unjustified and the payments were part of a contractual
agreement.  www.nats.co.uk

Don’t miss out!

Don’t miss an opportunity to attend the fifth Employers’ Law briefing in
association with Allen & Overy. This one-day conference, held on 5 December
2002 at the British Library, London, will focus on ‘managing incapacity’,
approaching the challenges from legal, HR and occupational health perspectives.
The issues for discussion will include disability discrimination, drugs and
alcohol and stress. For further information about this event please contact
Jacqui Winn on 0208 652 3304

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