Fire-at-will plans dropped, but concerns raised at other measures introduced by Business Secretary


The TUC has condemned government plans to make it easier to sack workers.

While Vince Cable has scrapped the most controversial measure of the Beecroft Proposals – the right to sack workers at will – he will push ahead with proposals to cut the compensation limit for unfair dismissal, streamline employment tribunals and “simplify” TUPE arrangements.

He also wants to introduce ‘settlement agreements’ which would allow employers to “persuade” staff to leave voluntarily.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber (pictured) said: “We are very pleased that Adrian Beecroft’s proposal to allow employers to fire employees at whim has been ignored. This would have would have set workers’ rights back decades and created huge insecurity in workplaces throughout the country.

“However, reducing payouts for unfair dismissals will let bad employers off lightly and deter victims from pursuing genuine cases. This will feel like another slap in the face following the government’s decision to bring in fees for employment tribunals.

“For all the government’s talk that helping businesses to sack poor performing workers will make them more productive this is little more than a smokescreen to erode hard-won rights. Making it easier for bad employers to get away with misconduct is not the way to kick-start our economy and will not create a single job.”

Earlier this year Thompsons Solicitors gave their verdict on the Beecroft Proposals. Today they give their verdict on Cable’s latest plans, saying they will allow employers to ambush and bully workers.

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