On 2 May 2017, the government approved proposals for draft legislation to increase the employment protections for casual and temporary workers. This follows a commitment in the Programme for Government to address the increased casualisation of work and to strengthen the regulation of precarious work.
The CIPD in Ireland welcomes the recognition that additional protection is needed for low paid workers in precarious employment, but is concerned about the way the proposals can increase the administrative burden and costs on employers and hence impact job creation.
The draft proposals are far-reaching and aim to legislate on employment contracts, the removal of zero hour contracts, a minimum payment for low hours work, and increase access to a contractual commitment to higher banded hours. While these changes are stated to be targeted at low-paid workers, they go beyond this and will have impact on all future employment relationships, with the need to give employment contracts within 5 days of commencing employment and prohibiting zero hours contracts.
The CIPD understands the following are the main points of the proposals.