Big rise in number of over 50s on zero-hours contracts

The number of older workers on zero-hours contracts has risen by 52% in the five years from 2014, according to new analysis.

Menopause

 

The number of over 50s on a zero-hours contract has increased by nearly 100,000 in the last five years, according to new figures released today.

The over 50s organisation Rest Less says the number of zero hours workers over 50 has risen from 190,000 in 2014 to 288,000 in 2019 – an increase of 52 per cent in five years.

The analysis is based on data from the Office of National Statistics showing the level and rate of people on zero-hours contracts by age breakdown.

Rest Less also says that the increase in zero-hours contracts has been most dramatic amongst the over 65s.  There has been a 72 per cent jump in the number of over 65s in zero-hours contracts between 2014 and 2019.

Stuart Lewis, Founder of Rest Less, said: “Zero-hour contracts can be helpful to workers who are looking for lots of flexibility in how and when they choose to work – but they come at a cost. With no guaranteed earnings, if used inappropriately they can create significant pressure for employees to take any hours offered, whatever the conditions.

‘The rising number of over 50s with zero-hour contracts could be a general cause for concern, but is particularly worrying as we brace ourselves for the spread of coronavirus – if  people on zero-hours contracts cannot work due to self-isolation they may also not get paid.”



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