Monday 22 January 2018

Businesses should not be vilified over workers' casual contracts

A picket outside Dunnes Stores in the Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre, Dublin, last week
A picket outside Dunnes Stores in the Stephen’s Green Shopping Centre, Dublin, last week
Richard Curran

Richard Curran

The Dunnes Stores strike over conditions for employees on low hour contracts has highlighted the changing nature of how people work, how they are employed and whether long term stability can be provided to many employees.

Much of the debate has been around the issue of so called "zero hour contracts", which are widely used in the UK, but not necessarily so much in Ireland.

Employment law here means that people on these casual hour arrangements must be paid at least 25pc of the hours they are contracted to be available to work. That can often translate into 15 hours per week. In reality they often end up working and being paid for more hours than that.

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