…in brief

Young speaks out

The head of the Institute of Directors, Lord Young, has called for non-executive directorships to be scrapped and told the Institute’s convention that allowing part-timers to police boardrooms was naive. He said attempts to regulate non-executives were dangerous, and that investors needed to hold management directly accountable.

weblink www.iod.com

Postal staff to strike

Postal workers are set to take part in the first national strike in six years over a change in working patterns. The Royal Mail has offered 2.2 per cent to the Communication Workers Union to expand delivery spans from two-and-a-half to four hours. However, the union does not want the issue to be dealt with by the pay claim and has set 8 May as a strike day.

weblink www.cwu.org

Pensions to go

More companies are likely to axe their final salary pension schemes to cut costs in the wake of the Budget, warned the National Association of Pension Funds.

NAPF chairman Peter Thompson said the 1 per cent rise in the employers National Insurance bills – estimated to cost companies £4bn a year – will drive businesses to look at pensions provisions as they were an obvious target for cost cutting.

weblink www.napf.co.uk

Bedside manners

The Government is promoting training courses which will teach doctors and nurses to be nicer to patients. From later this year, all NHS health professionals will receive help with communication skills from psychologists, who will run classes on how to deal with difficult situations.

weblink www.nhs.uk

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