Socialist Worker

Tories attack workplace rights and pensions

Issue No. 2353

The queen’s speech outlined plans to make it easier for bosses to ignore discrimination in the workplace.

Employment tribunals will lose their power to advise bosses on how to improve the experiences of workers, under the Draft Deregulation Bill.

The government is trying to lower the amount of regulations that business have to comply with. 

This means bosses will no longer be advised on how to fully protect their workers after successful discrimination cases.

They will no longer be obliged to make sure it never happens again.

Employment tribunals were given the powers under the Equality Bill in 2010. But opponents say the legislation is a “burden” on businesses. 

The bill will remove the self-employed from an obligation to follow health and safety laws. 

The speech also announced big changes to pensions.

A pensions bill will raise the retirement age to 67. This is set to be the first of many increases.

And 1.7 million people receiving pensions due to their spouse's national insurance contributions will lose their payments.

The government has sold this change as part of its attack on migrants, even though it attacks all people who recieive the pension. 

It claims 70 percent of the pension payouts were to men who had married British women and were now claiming the payment abroad. 

But the new legislation will also stop the maximum widows’ pension of £66 a week.

The bill also announces plans to introduce a flat rate state pension of £144 a week. 

This replaces the basic state pension of £110 a week and earnings-related top-up.


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