Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


Letter: Flexible labour or cheap labour?

Sir: Your report "Flexible jobs seen as future face of labour" (8 March) suggests that in 10 years' time half the workforce will be working "flexibly", that is on short-term contracts, self-employed or part-time.

One great advantage to employers is that part-timers' pay is lower than full-timers, and since most part-timers are women, the labour force is even cheaper. In Great Britain, part-time women workers' pay is only 75 per cent of full-time women workers, and only 58 per cent of male full- timers. We will see a vast increase in the pool of cheap labour

Lois Stewart

International Confederation of Free Trade Unions