Johnson and Simmonds vote down bill to end ‘Fire and Rehire’

Updated: Nov 19, 2021

Local MPs Boris Johnson and David Simmonds voted down a bill which, if passed, would have protected all workers against dismissal and re-engagement on inferior terms and conditions.

The Employment and Trade Union Rights (Dismissal and Re-engagement) Private Member’s Bill had been proposed by Labour MP Barry Gardiner and was backed by opposition MPs including Hayes and Harlington MP John McDonnell.

The practice of ‘Fire and Rehire’ has gained prominence over the last 18 months because of high profile cases involving well known employers including BA, Heathrow Airport, Clarks, Argos, Sainsbury’s, and Weetabix.

A poll published by the Trades Union Congress (TUC) in January of this year revealed that nearly one in 10 workers have been told to re-apply for their jobs on worse terms and conditions since the first coronavirus lockdown in March 2020.

Conservative MPs voted down the proposals for regulation, calling instead for clearer guidance for companies.

A spokesman for Boris Johnson said: "Using threats of firing and rehiring is completely unacceptable as a negotiating tactic. We expect companies to treat their employees fairly.

"However, there is insufficient evidence to show legislation will stop the practice or will be effective."