IPPR - UK risks EU retaliation if workers’ rights are rolled back
IPPR trade and EU relations expert says leaked proposal to cut working time protections would also be damaging and deeply unpopular
Last week leaked reports in the Financial Times suggested that the government is considering rolling back EU derived working time and holiday pay rules.
IPPR’s analysis of the trade deal, published the day after Boxing Day, warned that the deal gave ministers considerable scope to roll back workers’ rights and environmental protections.
A 2018 IPPR study showed that rolling back the Working Time Directive would be unpopular with both ‘remainers’ and ‘leavers’ with around three quarters saying they should be ‘retained or tightened’ rather than ‘relaxed or removed’.
Marley Morris, IPPR Associate Director for Immigration, Trade and EU Relations, said:
“The report in the Financial Times that the government plans to 'rip up' EU working time rules would be bad for workers, damaging for UK-EU relations, and deeply unpopular with the public.
“The proposal would risk retaliation from the EU for breaking the 'level playing field' commitments in the UK-EU trade agreement, including the potential triggering of tariffs on UK exports. While the agreement does not prevent reductions in labour standards in all instances, it does so where it can be proved that there is an impact on trade or investment between the UK and the EU. This flagrant act of deregulation could meet that test.
“We also know that ripping up working time regulations would have little public support. Our 2018 study of attitudes to EU regulations found around three quarters of the public supported maintaining or tightening working time rules, including strong support from both remainers and leavers."
Marley Morris is available for interview
Robin Harvey, Digital and Media Officer: 07779 204798 email@example.com
NOTES TO EDITORS
The IPPR paper, The Brexit EU-UK trade deal: A first analysis by Marley Morris, is available for download at: https://www.ippr.org/research/publications/the-brexit-eu-uk-trade-deal-a-first-analysis
The 2018 polling on working time is available in the IPPR report Leaving the EU, not the European model? New findings on public attitudes to Brexit which can be downloaded here: https://www.ippr.org/research/publications/leaving-the-eu-not-the-european-model
Figure 1 from the above publication:
Further IPPR research on post-Brexit workers’ rights is available in the 2018 report A Level Playing Field for Workers: The future of employment post-Brexit by Marley Morris: https://www.ippr.org/research/publications/a-level-playing-field-for-workers
IPPR is the UK’s pre-eminent progressive think tank. With more than 40 staff in offices in London, Manchester, Newcastle and Edinburgh, IPPR is Britain’s only national think tank with a truly national presence. www.ippr.org
Latest News from
It is time to scrap stamp duty altogether, says IEA expert25/02/2021 11:35:00
Julian Jessop Economics Fellow at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, commented on reports that the Chancellor will extend the stamp duty holiday until June
IFS - Nurses more likely to leave NHS hospitals where costs of living have increased quickly25/02/2021 10:35:00
Improving the retention of NHS staff has been a long-term policy challenge, and will be of even greater importance in the aftermath of the Covid-19 pandemic.
In a free society there should be “no right not to be offended”, says IEA expert25/02/2021 09:35:00
Marc Glendening, Head of Cultural Affairs at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, commented on Merseyside Police’s decision to apologise for claiming “being offensive is an offence” as part of a campaign to encourage people to report hate crime
“Boris Johnson’s sluggish timetable will do unnecessary damage to businesses and livelihoods”, says IEA expert23/02/2021 11:35:00
Christopher Snowdon, Head of Lifestyle Economics at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, responded to Boris Johnson’s roadmap to lift lockdown measures in England
King's Fund - New report calls on London’s health and care leaders to ignite efforts to tackle health inequalities23/02/2021 10:35:00
Yesterday’s report from The King’s Fund, Integrated care systems in London: Challenges and opportunities ahead, finds that health and care organisations across London have worked together more closely than ever before to improve and join up services in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
IEA - Back to school and beyond: Time to fix longstanding problems in education, says new research23/02/2021 09:35:00
Uber ruling will raise prices and cut off earning opportunities for thousands, says IEA expert19/02/2021 16:20:00
Professor Len Shackleton, Editorial and Research Fellow at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, responded to the UK’s Supreme Court ruling that Uber must classify its drivers as workers rather than self-employed
JRF - Chancellor must act to tackle rent debt crisis19/02/2021 15:20:00
Joint statement by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Big Issue, Ride Out Recession Alliance, Crisis, Citizens Advice, Money Advice Trust, The Mortgage Works, National Residential Landlords Association, Nationwide Building Society, Propertymark, StepChange Debt Charity and Shelter
IEA responds to Sir Keir Starmer’s speech on the economy19/02/2021 14:20:00
Mark Littlewood, Director General at free market think tank the Institute of Economic Affairs, responded to Sir Keir Starmer’s speech on the economy
Return to school must come soon – with additional support for poorer pupils a priority19/02/2021 13:20:00
The emerging consensus to prioritise school reopenings is welcome. But how the return to school is managed is just as important as when. An optional return risks widening the gaps between disadvantaged students and their better-off peers. And even if the return to school is compulsory and soon, we will still need substantial additional support for poorer pupils.