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Temporary workers get equal treatment

22 May 2008

Temporary workers get equal treatment The government, trade unions and the Confederation of British Industry have reached an agreement on new rights for temporary workers, it has emerged.

Students who work as temps in order to support their studies could be interested to hear that agreements have been reached between all parties concerned with the Temporary and Agency Workers (Equal Treatment) Bill.

The bill is now is its committee stages in the House of Commons and its instigator Andrew Miller MP has declared his delight at the agreement being reached.

"When I introduced my Private Member's Bill I did not anticipate it becoming law as drafted," he added.

"This agreement provides for equal treatment for a huge number of agency workers, some of whom have, in the past, been exploited by rogue employers," he concluded.

Brendan Barber, the Trade Union Council's director, said the decision meant a big change in the labour market as nearly three quarters (70 per cent) of agency workers would now be offered equal treatment.

The decision follows nearly six years of talks at European Union level and entitles temporary staff to the same legal protection as permanent staff after 12 weeks in the job.

According to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation, there are 1.4 million temporary workers in the UK's labour market.

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