MP calls for right to request more predictable terms and conditions of work

An SNP MP has called for an update in employments rights, which would see workers having the right to request more predictable terms and conditions.

Steven Bonnar told the Commons that workers’ rights are “not a priority for this or indeed any Westminster government”.

He said despite committing to an employment Bill “on at least 20 occasions”, ministers “have shelved the legislation each and every time”.

The MP for Coatbridge, Chryston and Bellshill’s comments came as he introduced a Bill relating to employment rights in the gig economy under a 10-minute-rule motion.

His proposals would update employment rights, including the right to request more predictable terms and conditions of work, and amend the definition of worker.

Mr Bonnar said: “Questionable employers must be held to account. Remarkably, we find ourselves in the 21st century facing 19th century battles, despite the obscene wealth, the progress and the sophistication enjoyed by the few at the expense of so many.”

He added: “The UK under Conservative rule has experienced the largest wave of strikes among workers in decades. We now know there is more planned well into the new year.

“Protecting workers’ rights has never and will never be a priority for this UK Government. They attempt to water down and take away any remaining dignity at every opportunity.

“These practices, these callous and uncompassionate culture must end and it must end now.

“I urge this House: support a new dawn for workers everywhere, one that respects them and one that holds their rights to the very highest standard.”

The Bill is listed for a second reading on February 3.

However, it is unlikely to make further progress without Government support due to a lack of parliamentary time to debate all Private Member’s Bills tabled by backbench MPs.