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Overhaul, simplify and repeal as much employment regulation as possible

Comment 1st July 2010

Employment regulation is completely out of hand.  All employers are now forced to incur an ever growing burden of regulation and employment rights.  This is nice for those who happen to have a job, but not very fair to those who do not.

Why does this matter?

Everyone agrees that unemployment is a great social ill, and we should try to reduce it if possible.  However, few seem to make the connection between the huge and growing expansion of employment regulation and rights, and the persistent problem of unemployment.

The fact is, however, that if you make it more costly, risky and difficult for employers to employ people, or to get rid of them if they are no good, then you reduce the demand for employment – hence, permanent unemployment.  It is no accident that all the major European economies have persistent and high rates of unemployment, particularly among the young.  It is a direct result of excessive EU employment regulation.  Those who have jobs are entrenched.  Those who do not can't get one.

This does not mean we should get rid of all employment rights, of course – just that we need to recognise that the current position is unbalanced.  We need to take a hard look at employment rights and regulation; only keep those that really matter; and simply or get rid of the rest.

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