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Len Shackleton
27 July 2013
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Matthew Hancock, the Skills minister, has been doing the media rounds asserting that British firms have ‘a duty’ to take on British workers rather than immigrants. This is rather...
Len Shackleton
18 June 2013
2 comments

Zero-hours contracts are in the news again, with Vince Cable last week announcing an enquiry into this type of arrangement. These contracts involve people agreeing to be available for work as and...
Len Shackleton
7 June 2013
1 comment

It is depressing to see education minister Liz Truss’s proposals to relax childcare ratios – which would have allowed nursery staff look after more children – vetoed by Nick Clegg...
Len Shackleton
4 June 2013
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It is reported this week that the Metropolitan Police is reviving a proposal, last aired (and rejected by the Labour government) in 2007, to allow the introduction of ethnic quotas in recruitment...
Len Shackleton
10 May 2013
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  It may sound incredible given the current political debate, but the UK government now spends more as a percentage of GDP on childcare than all European countries except Denmark. Yet the...
Len Shackleton
19 April 2013
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  It was interesting to read in The Times this week that many American companies which offer health insurance are fining employees who do not maintain their weight below a certain...
Len Shackleton
26 March 2013
1 comment

The announcement that households with income up to £300,000 will be entitled to financial assistance with childcare under the government’s plans has raised a few eyebrows. But this...
Len Shackleton
7 March 2013
1 comment

  As we move towards the budget we will be hearing more and more warnings about the impact of further cuts in public sector employment. One line, pursued repeatedly by the TUC and the...
Len Shackleton
20 February 2013
2 comments

Today’s labour market figures again present a largely positive picture, with unemployment falling once more, employment rising sharply, and economic inactivity falling. But there is plenty...
Len Shackleton
8 January 2013
2 comments

The Labour Party has created a stir in advance of today’s vote on restricting benefit increases by proposing a ‘jobs guarantee’ for 130,000 long-term unemployed. This would be...
Len Shackleton
15 November 2012
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This week Nick Clegg has announced the government’s intention to extend to all employees the right to request flexible working. This proposal seems not to have excited much concern amongst...
Len Shackleton
9 October 2012
1 comment

  After apparently backing away from comprehensive schemes for liberalising the labour market, the government yesterday made a small gesture in this direction. In his Conservative conference...
Len Shackleton
1 October 2012
2 comments

It is very difficult to deregulate the labour market. Here is a timely case in point – the continuing existence of the Agricultural Wages Board, which sets the new rates of pay for various...
Len Shackleton
20 September 2012
4 comments

  Patrick McLoughlin and Michael Gove are competent and well-thought-of Secretaries of State. As Conservatives, they presumably assert from time to time generalities about the virtues of...
Len Shackleton
11 September 2012
2 comments

Last week Ed Miliband suggested that a new Labour government could introduce a requirement for all government contractors to pay a ‘living wage’ well in excess of the national minimum...
Len Shackleton
9 August 2012
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  The UK’s centrally-planned universities could do with a real shake-up, and we need to create new institutional forms if they are to be effective in the future. One way to do this is...
Len Shackleton
21 June 2012
5 comments

I admit that I’ve never been a fan of Jimmy Carr and am surprised to learn just how much he has apparently been earning for his rather predictable anti-establishment comedy. But if...
Len Shackleton
24 May 2012
2 comments

Adrian Beecroft’s suggestions to lift some of the burden which employment regulation places on business deserve a fuller consideration than they appear to be getting from the government. The...
Len Shackleton
8 May 2012
5 comments

I am looking forward to the Olympics as I’m sure you are. But I’m also sure I’m not alone in wondering quite why we have needed to spend £9.3 billion (the Public Accounts...
Len Shackleton
27 April 2012
9 comments

Age discrimination is one of the fastest-growing categories of Employment Tribunal claim. In the last full year for which figures are available, there were 6800 claims, as against only 5200 the...