A Conservative committment to fair employment?
The World Health Organisation has reported that it is within the possibilties of public policy to reduce health inequalities within a generation. A key part of their proposed solution is ‘Fair Employment and Decent Work’. Given the Conservative Party’s recent interest in highlighting the ongoing inequalities in UK health, I look forward to hearing their committments around this fair employment agenda.
The World Health Organisation conclude that:
Through the assurance of fair employment and decent working conditions, government, employers, and workers can help eradicate poverty, alleviate social inequities, reduce exposure to physical and psychosocial hazards, and enhance opportunities for health and well-being…. Achieving health equity requires safe, secure, and fairly paid work, year-round work opportunities, and healthy work-life balance for all.
In particular, the report emphasises the negative health impacts of temporary, precarious work. Mortality is higher among temporary workers compared to permenant workers, and poor mental health outcomes show a significant association with precarious employment. These links were also higlighted by the Commission on Vulnerable Employment.