On 6 September 2018, the government announced that it would not proceed with the proposed abolition of Class 2 NICs for self-employed workers during the current Parliament. The intention, announced in 2015, was to bring NICs for the self-employed into line with those paid by employees, and simplifying the taxation of self-employment.
The government will keep the proposals under review, and has confirmed its intention to legislate for reforms to the NICs treatment of termination payments and income from sporting testimonials.
Gateway to mental health support
A survey of 44,000 people carried out by Mind revealed that 48% of all employees are affected by poor mental health, but only half of these had discussed the issue with employers. A recent poll carried out by the Institute of Directors also found that less than 20% of firms provided managers with mental health training.
This has lead to the launch of a new, online gateway to resources, Mental Health at Work, which was unveiled last month by Prince William at an event in Bristol. The gateway offers access to resources, training and information in a bid to defeat stigma and change the approach to workplace health. Chief Executive of Mind Paul Farmer said, “Now is the time for a step change in how we think about mental health at work”.
Toolkit to fix the pay gap
The Women’s Business Council’s Men as Change Agents group (MACA) has published a toolkit of practical advice aimed at business leaders and CEOs at FTSE 350 companies to assist them with closing the gender pay gap.
The toolkit recommends:
the promotion of flexible and agile working,
encouraging utilisation of shared parental leave; and
the creation of talent pipelines to aid the progression of women to more senior roles.
No-deal Brexit may end Auto-Enrolment Pensions
The Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, has suggested that automatic enrolment may need to be scrapped in the event of a no-deal Brexit. Javid proposed that auto-enrolment may need to be reconsidered as a means to support the economy if Britain cannot reach a deal with the European Union.
In spite of doom and gloom predictions in relation to auto-enrolment, unemployment rates have halved since 2011, with Work and Pensions Secretary Esther McVey recently claiming a “pensions revolution” in the light of the success of auto-enrolment.