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TUC Warns of Stark Wage Gap in UK Workforce.

TEHRAN (FNA)- The Trade Union Congress (TUC) warned that Britain is allowing a two-tier workforce to emerge where staff on zero-hours contracts have much lower pay and fewer rights than permanent employees.

Workers on zero-hours contracts earn u300 a week less than permanent employees the TUC said in a report on Monday, The Guardian reported.

Average weekly earnings for those staff without a set number of working hours are just u188, compared with u479 for permanent workers.

The research also found workers on zero-hours contracts are five times more likely to miss out on statutory sick pay, because of their lower take-home pay.

The TUC said it was a sign of an increasingly unfair, two-tier workforce in the UK, with those involved in "precarious labor" penalized in pay and working rights.

Frances O'Grady, TUC general secretary, said, "The growth of zero-hours contracts, along with other forms of precarious employment, is one of the main reasons why working people have seen their living standards worsen significantly in recent years.

"It is shocking that so many workers employed on these kind of contracts are on poverty pay and miss out on things that most of us take for granted like sick pay," she added.

She said the trend toward precarious labor was also hurting the UK economy, by lowering income tax revenues and therefore keeping the deficit higher.

The TUC made a number of recommendations, including that where people work regular hours, their employer should be legally required to give them a written contract guaranteeing those hours on an ongoing basis.

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Publication:FARS News Agency
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Dec 15, 2014
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