Ed Miliband has been in Huddersfield today speaking at David Brown Gears about the epidemic of zero-hours contracts that has swept the country under the Conservative-led Government.
As Ed said, zero-hours contract are an unmistakable sign that the economy is not working for everyone. About 30% of people in Huddersfield are on wages below the living wage. When you combine this with a zero-hours contract, it makes life very precarious.
To not know how much money you will have next week is the cruelest situation to be in. It leaves decent, hard-working people in great uncertainty about the future: they do not know if they will have a job next week, if they will be able to pay the rent or even put food on the table.
The Labour movement has fought for years to establish a minimal standard of employment for people, with reasonable working conditions and fair pay. The Conservatives have consistently pushed back on this, and I delighted to see Ed take the fight to them.
Labour has pledged today to crack down on zero-hours contracts by passing a law that will give employees the right to a regular contract after twelve weeks of working regular hours. Alongside our policy of increasing the minimum wage to £8 an hour by 2020, Labour’s manifesto will deliver for working people.
I have been knocking on doors in Paddock and Lepton today with Labour’s excellent council candidates Sheikh Ullah (Greenhead), Carol Pattison (Greenhead) and Judith Hughes (Almondbury). The weather has been absolutely miserable so I am grateful for the spirit of our intrepid Labour campaigners.
Conversation by conversation, door by door Labour will hold on to Huddersfield and make sure we have a Labour candidates in each of our five wards.