The rapid growth in the use of overseas and agency staff for many lower paid jobs has been a contentious issue for many in the trade union movement. Unions have demanded the same rights for agency staff as for permanent staff, but the government is reluctant to do this, arguing that the use of agency staff encourages flexibility in the workforce.
Underpaid, easy to sack: UK’s second class workforce Guardian (24/9/07)
|Explain the impact that the use of agency staff has on the supply curve for labour. (N.B. You should consider both the position and shape of the curve in your answer.)
|Discuss the government’s view that “the flexibility provided by agency workers has been a vital part of Britain’s economic success“.
|Discuss the impact on the UK labour market of giving agency staff the same employment rights as permanent staff.