By Maximilian Clarke

A leading trades union has refuted the view held by business organisations and the Conservative Party, that doubling the qualifying time for unfair dismissal claims will encourage employers to hire new staff, as ‘absurd’.

"The very notion that reducing the rights of workers of between 12 months and two years service to bring unfair dismissal claims will create a single new job is quire frankly absurd,” said Paul Kenny GMB General Secretary. “Job creation is not the real reason the Tory Party want to take away these rights.”

GMB research reveals that, of the 24.2 million employees in employment there are between 50,000 and 60,000 claims for unfair dismissal each year- less than one claim for every 400 workers or a claim from 0.2% of the total workforce in the UK.

More than two thirds of these cases get settled before they reach the tribunal. Only about 5,000 unfair dismissal claims succeed at tribunals each year. That is a successful claim for one in every 5,000 employees in employment in the UK. Successful claims attract a median level of compensation of £4,900.

Kenny then blames the ‘nasty Tories’ for deliberately stripping workers’ rights in order to facilitate the whims of the ‘predatory elite’.

Business Secretary, Vince Cable justified the law change, saying: “Businesses tell us that unfair dismissal rules are a major barrier to taking on more people. So today we have announced that only after working for the same employer for two years can an employee bring an unfair dismissal claim.”

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