Monday, 14 September 2015

Consumer Advice

Our monthly correspondent Elizabeth Crampton from the Citizens Advice Bureau joined us tonight on Drivetime where the following items were covered.

Self Employment
Self-employment is now a mainstream part of the UK labour market: around 15 per cent of people work in this way. For most people, working for themselves provides welcome flexibility, independence and the reward of growing their own business. However, for some people who are self-employed, the reality is very different.

As many as 460,000 people in the UK could be bogusly self-employed. These are people whose work has all the hallmarks of employment but who have been classed as self-employed by their employer.

This means the employer avoids their National Insurance and any pension contribution, whilst also claiming they do not have to provide basic employment rights. In some cases the employer doesn’t even tell people they’ve been classed as self-employed, and, because the self-employed are usually responsible for their own tax arrangements, this can result in surprise tax demands, often years later

Domestic Abuse
It should be a national scandal. Just last year, 1 in 15 women, and 1 in every 33 men experienced domestic abuse in their relationship. A quarter of women and a ninth of men have had an abusive partner.

Despite the serious physical, emotional and financial harm victims can experience, it still predominantly a hidden crime – little talked about, and little reported.

New research from Citizens Advice found only 14 per cent of victims had ever told the police, and only 2 per cent told a specialist domestic abuse worker. We know from our service, that many victims won’t disclose abuse unless they areproactively asked. As victims struggle to speak up and seek help, the gap between them and services there to support and protect them stretches large.

Full details on these items and much more can be found at the web site

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