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Government lacks the know-how to help disabled people get into work

Government lacks the know-how to help disabled people get into work

disabled people working in an office and smilingThe Department for Work Pensions has limited evidence of what works when it comes to supporting disabled people to work, according to the National Audit Office (NAO) in a report published today. The number of disabled­­ people in work has risen by 930,000 (31 percent) in the last five years, but this has not been matched by a reduction in the number of disabled people who are out of work. The NAO found that the government’s headline goal of getting one million more disabled people into work from 2017 to 2027 cannot be used to measure the success of its efforts. The Department itself recognises that this measure cannot be linked directly to any specific government policy or programme. Broader factors, such as more people who are already in work reporting a disability, and rising employment rates, have a significant effect on the measure. It therefore lacks a target for which it is willing to be held to account. More →

Automation could replace 1.5 million UK jobs, according to Government study

Automation could replace 1.5 million UK jobs, according to Government study

Around 1.5 million jobs in England are at high risk of some of their duties and tasks being automated in the future, Office for National Statistics (ONS) analysis shows. The ONS has analysed the jobs of 20 million people in England in 2017, and has found that 7.4 percent are at high risk of automation. Women, young people, and those who work part-time are most likely to work in roles that are at high risk of automation. More →

Government publishes strategy for future mobility in UK cities

Government publishes strategy for future mobility in UK cities

The UK government has published its Future of mobility: urban strategy, which sets out its approach to working with innovators, companies, local authorities and other stakeholders to develop benefits of new urban mobility technologies. Alongside publication of the strategy, it has also launched a £90 million competition for cities to deliver Future of Mobility Zones, which follows £60 million awarded to 10 cities across the UK via the Transforming Cities Fund. It aims to support local leaders and industry to trial new mobility services, modes and models through the creation of up to four future mobility zones. More →

Government report shows increase in number of workers balancing care commitments

Government report shows increase in number of workers balancing care commitments

A new official report has highlighted the increasing number of people who are having to balance caring for family members with their own working commitments. Catherine Foot, the Director of Evidence for the Centre for Ageing Better, responded to these statistics by calling for legislation to promote flexible working among older workers. Published by the Office for National Statistics, the report has found that one in four older female workers, and one in eight older male workers, have care responsibilities.

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Construction and property firms call on Government to set binding environmental targets

Construction and property firms call on Government to set binding environmental targets

Twenty-three of the UK’s most influential built environment businesses have signed an open letter to the Chancellor of the Exchequer asking for the Environment Bill to provide the foundation for economic growth that is restorative and regenerative by design. In the letter, which was coordinated by UK Green Building Council in collaboration with GreenerUK, the signatories highlight the depletion of nature in the UK and call for a strong response to the challenge this presents. They urge the Government to use the upcoming Environment Bill to set legally binding targets for the achievement of environmental objectives – including tackling biodiversity loss, improving water and air quality and cutting down resource use and waste. More →

British Property Federation urges government to create coherent proptech strategy

British Property Federation urges government to create coherent proptech strategy

The UK is well placed to capture the lead as a global hub for real estate technology and innovation a report from the British Property Federation claims. But the country needs to develop a joined-up proptech strategy and roadmap to remain competitive globally, according to the report published jointly by the British Property Federation and Liquid Real Estate Innovation. The LIQUID Report: Leading the Digital Transformation of Global Real Estate claims that the UK is already a leader in terms of its capacity for innovation, data infrastructure, market transparency and quality of education, but falls behind other countries in terms of venture capital investment and technology infrastructure.

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Northern English cities bear brunt of government spending cuts

Northern English cities bear brunt of government spending cuts

The UK’s cities, and especially those in the North of England have borne nearly three-quarters (74 percent) of all real-terms local government funding cuts in the last decade despite being home to just 54 percent of the population, according to Centre for Cities’ annual Cities Outlook 2019 report – the Centre’s annual health check on UK city economies. This is equivalent to a reduction of £386 per city dweller since 2009/10, compared to £172 per person living elsewhere. Cities Outlook 2019  reveals a clear geographical divide in where cuts to cities have fallen, with the top five worst affected cities all located in the North of England.

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Government announces protections for pregnant mums and new parents returning to work

Government announces protections for pregnant mums and new parents returning to work

Pregnant women and new parents returning to work after having children are to be further protected from unfairly losing their jobs under new proposals set out by the UK government.  The consultation, launching today (25 January 2019) and running to 5 April, proposes that the legal protection against redundancy for pregnant women and new mothers on maternity leave is extended so that it continues for up to 6 months after they return to work. It will also seek views on affording the same protection to parents returning from adoption leave or shared parental leave.

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Government and employers unite to kick-start stalled flexible working 

Government and employers unite to kick-start stalled flexible working 

The Flexible Working Task Force, a partnership across government departments, business groups, trade unions and charities, has today launched a campaign to increase the uptake of flexible working.  Members of the task force are collectively using their ability to reach and influence hundreds of thousands of employers to encourage them to advertise jobs as flexible by using the strapline Happy to Talk Flexible Working in their job advertisements, regardless of level or pay grade.

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Government continues with massive reduction in size of public sector estate

Government continues with massive reduction in size of public sector estate

Work to reduce the UK government estate has seen its size fall by 156,000 square metres over the past year. This makes the estate a third smaller than it was in 2010 – creating a saving in real terms of £760 million in running costs, according to the Government. Today’s State of the Estate report also claims that a further £750 million in capital receipts has been generated this year from the sale of over 400 sites, delivering a total of £2.4bn in capital receipts over the past three years. At the same time, vacant space across the government estate is just 1.4 percent, which is significantly lower than in the private sector, according to the report.

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UK Government agrees to code of practice to combat sexual harassment at work

UK Government agrees to code of practice to combat sexual harassment at work

The Government has agreed to work with the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to introduce a statutory code of practice to tackle sexual harassment at work. It also agreed that non-disclosure agreements require better regulation and a clearer explanation of the rights that a worker cannot abrogate by signing one and will consult on how best to achieve this and enforce any new provisions. It also agrees that regulators should make it clear that workplace sexual harassment is unacceptable, and that sexual harassment should be taken into account when considering the fitness and propriety of the individuals and employers they regulate.

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Government’s new workplace reforms: the world responds

Government’s new workplace reforms: the world responds

The UK government has introduced what it claims to be the most significant package of workplace reforms for 20 years in response to last year’s Taylor Report on working practices. The Good Work Plan has introduced a range of measures which the Government claims will improve the rights of agency and part time workers and discourage employers from indulging in unwelcome practices.  The reforms are intended to stop businesses opting out of equal pay arrangements for agency employees and improve the conditions for gig economy workers generally, for example by giving workers details of their rights from the first day in a job, such as eligibility for sick leave, pay levels, maternity and paternity leave.

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