Written by Sam Woods
Published on December 12, 2014

No matter who wins the little toy and gets to tell the cringe worthy joke – we can be certain that some time soon this Christmas cracker is going to make bang.

These controversial contracts seem to have become a Christmas Cracker tug of war within the Houses of Parliament.

On one side we have the Government praising the drastic rise in employment figures which includes people in this category of employment. This is countered by Labour, who have highlighted the subject on to the top of their election agenda – claiming Zero Hour Contracts are creating another unforgiving barrier between the wealthy minority and the oppressed majority.

As a recap of my previous blog on the same subject - Employees are paid for the hours that they were required to work. Zero hour agreements remove the Employers obligation to contractually set a number of working hours to an employee. A Company therefore, can easily vary the structure and depth of their workforce within a short time-span to meet their demands.

Here are some of the recent updates we have seen in the media:

• Sports Direct who employ 90% of their workforce zero hour contracts have been ordered to include the terms of employment on all Job advertisements from October. They must detail that they cannot guarantee any sickness or holiday pay.

• Landlords are turning away tenants employed on a Zero Hour basis as there is no guaranteed income. Mortgage Lenders are following suit, there is a worry that as these contracts increase in popularity there will be further fuel to the fire of the Housing crisis.

• Business secretary Vince Cable has proposed new laws which will remove clauses in Zero Hour contracts to enable employees to accept work from more than one employer , offering employees more flexibility and freedom in unstable employments .