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1m 'on zero hours contracts'

The number of workers on zero-hours contracts could be one million - four times as high as official estimates, according to new research. Such workers are on call to work when needed by bosses but employers do not have guarantee any hours.

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Vince Cable orders review of zero hours contracts

Business Secretary Vince Cable has ordered a review of zero-hours contracts, saying little is known of the impact they have on employees.

Business Secretary Vince Cable says little is known of the impact of zero hours contracts. Credit: Press Assocation

He said: "For some these can be the right sort of employment contract, giving workers a choice of working patterns. However for a contract that is now more widely used, we know relatively little about its effect on employers and employees.

"There has been anecdotal evidence of abuse by certain employers - including in the public sector - of some vulnerable workers at the margins of the labour market.

"Whilst it's important our workforce remains flexible, it is equally important that it is treated fairly. This is why I have asked my officials to undertake some work over the summer to better understand how this type of contract is working in practice today."

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