Over 800 Organise members submitted to a government consultation on holiday and sick pay in the workplace

The government is looking into conditions around holiday and sick pay and asking if people receive the pay they’re entitled to when they’re off sick or take annual leave [1]. The consultation delves into the barriers people face to claiming sick and holiday pay and the reasons managers give to stop people taking it.

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This week Organise sent the government a report detailing the experiences of over 800 people from the Organise community on holiday and sick pay where they work.

Here are the main findings that hundreds of us in the Organise community came together to expose:

  • 1 in 5 Organise members do not receive holiday pay. This is most common among people on precarious contracts including zero hours who were unaware of their rights after either not being given an explanation, or being given the wrong explanation on what they’re entitled to.
  • Around 30% of Organise members do not receive sick pay. Reasons for this are almost exactly the same as the findings for holiday pay, with many people being told incorrect information. 
  • The biggest barrier (and almost the only barrier) to asking for sick pay or annual leave is fear of reprisal from the employer. Particularly for people on zero hours contracts who are worried about having their hours cut as punishment. 
  • Over 75% of workers want to be able to anonymously report their employers for not providing legal entitlements with sick pay and holiday pay. 
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You can find the full report here: https://static1.squarespace.com/static/5a3af3e22aeba594ad56d8cb/t/5afd4d6b0e2e72fb3ae25014/1526549867996/Employment+status+consultation+analysis+%28holiday+and+sick+pay%29+%281%29.pdf 

The government created 4 separate consultations on employment practices for people to respond to. Organise decided to combine them into one easy package to allow people to give their views on all 4 in one go.

People’s responses on their own would have been hard for the government to take notice of. 
But thanks to hundreds of people in the Organise community, we've made sure the government takes their experiences seriously.


[1] The government’s consultation page for Enforcement of employment rights: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/enforcement-of-employment-rights-recommendations

Ted Burke