Please stop tinkering with employment legislation

Caroline Williams, Chief Executive, Norfolk Chamber of Commerce

As commented in our article found under 'News' I feel that the Government could have been bolder in its Queen’s speech content.

However the area that gets me most aerated is the constant tinkering or should I say meddling with employment law. What may be possible to cope with from a larger business point of view is a nightmare for smaller businesses.

The plans for more flexible parental leave will allow women who want to return to work earlier after having a baby to do so, by transferring some of their maternity-leave entitlement to the baby's father.

Ministers have chosen to ignore the fact a complex new system of shared parental leave brings massive complexities and huge uncertainty for employers. At a time when Norfolk businesses are trying to cope with a very challenging economic situation they are hit with these proposals.

While most businesspeople identify with the idea of gender-neutral parental leave, they’ve warned time and again that the government’s proposals are unwieldy, difficult to understand, and fraught with potential complications.

Businesses may now be exposed to endless appeals, legal challenges and grievances. The government has promised to cut red tape, but continues to tinker with employment legislation, bringing uncertainty and costs to businesses. If shared parental leave is introduced the government must ensure that the possible patterns that can be requested are limited to reduce complexity.

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