Campaign Response: Fire and Rehire Tactics

I have been contacted by constituents regarding Fire and Rehire Tactics.

As the Member of Parliament for Milton Keynes South, I have included below my response:

I am aware of reports of several businesses and industry sectors, considering making large numbers of staff redundant. I appreciate that many businesses have been significantly affected by the Covid-19 outbreak, including those operating in the hospitality, leisure, entertainment, culture, travel, retail and transport sectors. I understand how difficult it will be for anyone facing redundancy during the pandemic - redundancy is never an easy process to go through, and it is important that those who have been made redundant are fully aware of their rights.

Employers have the flexibility to arrange conditions of employment and should behave responsibly. Employers that threaten to ‘fire and rehire’ as part of a negotiating tactic are completely unacceptable. However, there is already recourse for those who feel they have been treated unfairly. If an employee feels they have been dismissed unfairly, they should first check their rights at before they consider taking their case to an employment tribunal.

I have spoken to Ministerial colleagues to ensure that they are aware of your concerns. Especially at this time, employers must act responsibly and only use the Job Retention Scheme to protect jobs. I understand that the Government is urging employers not to use the Job Retention Scheme irresponsibly and thereby to make someone redundant on less favourable terms than they would otherwise have received.

In addition, Ministers have reassured me that they continue to engage with businesses and stakeholders to identify what support is available during this pandemic. This has ensured the Government is kept fully aware of the latest developments with all firms and to understand where additional policy measures could address specific industry issues.

I will continue to monitor the situation very closely.