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Infozone: the briefing – 03/09/10

03 September 2010
Infozone: the briefing – 03/09/10

WORKPLACE PARKING LEVY LOOMS

The Forum of Private Business has warned that councils across the UK are planning to introduce a workplace parking levy (WPL) scheme, which will see businesses being taxed on parking provisions they make for staff.

It said that business owners may be forced to pay tens of thousands of pounds a year for providing staff with somewhere to park their cars.

Forum spokesman Chris Gorman said: "When the Nottingham WPL scheme was given the go-ahead last year we said that it would be only a matter of time before it spread to other towns and cities. Sadly, it appears those fears will soon be realised.

"It's simply a stealth tax, which will have a disproportionate impact on small businesses."

SHORTAGE OF FLEXIBLE-WORKING JOBS

Government plans to get more single parents back into work could be thrown into jeopardy due to a lack of flexible working arrangements, according to new research.

The Changing the Workplace survey of more than 500 lone parents by charity Gingerbread revealed that "family-friendly" jobs are considered too rare. Many single parents had seen no, or few, roles advertised as part-time, within school hours, as a job share or flexible in some other way.

The Government announced in its emergency Budget that it will require a further 100,000 single parents to seek work in 2011 when their youngest child reaches five, rather than the current age of 10. In October 120,000 single parents whose youngest child is aged seven will be required to look for work.

Gingerbread recommends that employers offer workers a set number of paid days per year for caring for dependents; provide training on managing flexible working to all managers; and offer jobs of 16 hours a week so that parents can claim working tax credit.

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