Government scraps employment code for local authorities

In a move that could have implications for the recruitment industry, the government has revealed plans to scrap the Local Authority Two Tier Code.

This employment code requires local authority employers to offer new recruits "no less favourable" terms and conditions of employment than those offered to transferred employees.

Eric Pickles, the Local Government Secretary, said that the change would encourage job creation and "level the playing field" for public sector recruitment. He announced the plans at a meeting with the Confederation of British Industry (CBI), which welcomed the news. However, unions were concerned that the changes would remove "vital" protection for public sector workers.

The Unite union claimed that the changes would allow private firms taking over public services to exploit the lack of protection for new recruits, enabling them "to start a race to the bottom on pay and terms and conditions, in these already low-wage occupations."

The government, however, claims that the abolition of the Two Tier Code would reduce costs for the tax-payer and would encourage private firms taking over public services to create more jobs in areas like cleaning, catering and care.

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