UK/EU - The Engineering Employers Federation has called on the government to block EU plans to give agency workers occupational pension rights.
Under the proposals – passed by MEPs last month – agency workers would be given the same employment rights as a firm’s permanent members of staff, which includes access to any occupational pension scheme.
An EEF survey showed that 80% of employers believed the directive would add to their costs, with half claiming that it would “seriously damage” their competitive position, increasing the chances of jobs being lost and posing a further threat to inward investment to the UK.
In a letter sent to Tony Blair the EEF urged him to rally support from EU member states to stop the directive passing in its current form.
Deputy director of employment policy David Yeandle said: “Pay should not be included in the comparison, but if it is, it should specifically exclude occupational pensions.”
He added: “While the vote has given the slim possibility that there may be a six week derogation (vesting) period, this may only be transitional, and is someway short of the 12 month period called for by UK employers and supported by UK government.”
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