Medicine

Taylor Review recommends additional protections for gig economy workers

Taylor Review recommends additional protections for gig economy workers

However, they are not eligible to receive full-time benefits even if they choose to work full-time hours due to their "independent contractor" status.

"At the same time they can pay taxes and save for their pension", said Taylor.

In his report, Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the Royal Society of Arts, said the current labour market in the United Kingdom "doesn't work for everyone", and highlighted an "imbalance of power" between individuals and employers.

While people hiring such workers may wish them to pay the appropriate tax, it is hard in practice for them to be sure that they do, said the report.

The 115 page report makes recommendations which could impact on employment strategy for the coming decades in the United Kingdom, particularly (but certainly not exclusively) within the gig economy.

"Taylor's proposals on hours of pay, the minimum wage and statutory sick pay risk undermining the rights of employees and workers in the wider workforce in unforeseen ways", she said.

Uber - a company itself embroiled in controversy after its entire executive office was cleared out following allegations of institutional sexism in the firm - last week called for changes to United Kingdom employment law.

It's important to note, though, that you are not self-employed just because the company you work for says you are - or even because you sign a contract to that effect.

The review recommends that a new category of workers called "dependent contractors" should be created in an attempt to clarify the grey area between fully-employed and self-employed workers.

The Taylor review proposed dropping "worker" status for that of "dependent contractor", in a bid to distinguish more clearly between those who are genuinely self-employed and those who are not.

"Drivers using Uber made average fares of £15 per hour past year after our service fee and, even after costs, the average driver took home well over the National Living Wage".

Tim Roache, the general secretary of labour union GMB, praised the intentions of the Taylor review, but called the results a "disappointing missed opportunity" and claimed that exploitation of workers is at the heart of gig-economy business models: "This isn't a quirk of the system, this is the system - and without regulation this system will inevitably continue".

Trade unions also said Mr Taylor did not tackle numerous issues facing workers.

Taylor said in his speech: 'The review calls on the government to adopt the ambition that all work should be fair and decent with scope for fulfilment and development.

"The boldness on overtime contrasts with a timid right for zero-hour contract workers to request guaranteed hours, something that can all too easily be rejected by employers". Our 20-point plan would truly transform the world of work, providing security, rights and protection for millions of working people.

"We'd welcome any nuggets of good news, but it doesn't look like the report will shift the balance of power in the modern workplace".

Nicol said that the report's recommendations on clarifying worker status, considering enhancing rights for the most vulnerable atypical workers, overhauling legislation designed to promote more effective consultation with workers and educating businesses and individuals about their rights and responsibilities would "help create the foundation of success for the future".

It is hoped that this would prevent cases in which people find themselves part-way through an employment tribunal - which can be very expensive - only to be told they are not an employee or worker and therefore do not have rights.

He says they should be entitled to a higher minimum wage than regular employees.

But the rise of these companies has triggered protests from unions and some workers in the United Kingdom, just as it has in other countries such as the US, France, India and Australia.