The Department for Work and Pensions along with the Department of Health and Social Care have launched a consultation under the banner: Health is everyone’s business: proposals to reduce ill-health related job loss. #workandhealth
These proposals aim to support early action by employers for their employees with long term health conditions and improve access to occupational health.
‘This consultation proposes a range of measures to address these challenges. We want to boost the support that government provides and focus on encouraging early and supportive action by employers for their employees with health conditions. Taken together, these proposals will support more disabled people and people with long-term health conditions to remain in work which is sustainable and positive for their health‘
Amongst the proposals are reforms to SSP which is currently viewed as not reflecting modern flexible working practices. It proposes to reform SSP so that it is better enforced and more options in supporting employees.
It proposes amending the rules of SSP to enable an employee returning to have a flexible phased return to work options without loosing their SSP payments entirely, a current disincentive to return.
Extending protection to those earning under the National Insurance Lower Earnings Limit (LEL) (currently £118 per week) so that they may qualify for SSP.
As part of the Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices – Where employers fail to pay SSP where it is due, the government should increase fines on employers. The government is also to consider whether enforcement of SSP should be included within the remit of a new single labour market enforcement body.
To provide additional clarity for employees and their rights, the government intends to make access to a day one written statement a right for both employees and workers. This includes details of eligibility for sick leave and pay.
Responses to the consultation can be completed online at https://getinvolved.dwp.gov.uk/work-and-health/consultation/