HC Deb 24 July 1979 vol 971 cc137-8W
Mr. Loveridge

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will now seek to increase the qualifying period to 104 weeks for firms employing under 25 persons, before the unfair dismissal procedures come into effect, so as to encourage these firms to take on more staff and thus increase employment.

Mr. Mayhew

The position of small firms is one of the issues my colleagues and I are actively considering in our review of the employment protection legislation.

Mr. Loveridge

asked the Secretary of State for Employment if he will list in the Official Report the names of those organisations from which the Government have received representations that the period of employment before which the qualifying period comes into effect should be increased to 104 weeks, or more, rather than the 52 weeks proposed in the Unfair Dismissal (Variation of Qualifying Period) Order 1979.

Mr. Mayhew

Of the organisations which were consulted on the order, the following six recommended a qualifying period of 104 weeks or more:

  • The Association of British Chambers of Commerce;
  • The Federation of Medium and Small Employers;
  • The Forum of Private Businesses;
  • The National Union of Small Shopkeepers;
  • The National Federation of Self-Employed; and
  • The Union of Independent Companies.
The last two of these organisations recommended 104 weeks only for small firms.