is the AWR
The Agency Workers Regulations consist of the AWD and other regulations
lets firstly consider the AWD.
The main purpose of the Agency Worker Directive (AWD) is to ensure the appropriate
protection of temporary agency workers through the application of the principle
of equal treatment and to address unnecessary restrictions and prohibitions
on the use of agency work.
The AWD follows similar directives on fixed-term
and part-time work (which were based on European social partner agreements).
Under the Directive 'equal treatment'
relates only to basic working and employment conditions of temporary agency
workers (eg pay, working time).
The Directive does not affect the employment status of temporary workers.
The new regulations derive from European legislation designed to give temporary
agency workers parity in pay and employment conditions as they would have
been entitled to had they been recruited by the hirer directly to do the
Whilst in other parts of the EU, this entitlement comes into effect from
day one of an assignment;
the UK has a derogation period of 12 weeks.
This means the agency worker needs be engaged for
12 weeks’ of service with the same hirer, in the same role, in order
The new regulations will not change the employment status of agency workers
who will still not have the rights to claim unfair dismissal, redundancy
pay or maternity leave.
Nor will agency workers be entitled to the same benefits
such as occupational sick pay, company pension schemes; financial participation
schemes and bonus payments based upon organisational or company performance.
These are considered a
reflection of the long term relationship between an employee and an employer.
Agency workers will therefore remain a flexible labour resource for hirers.