Self-employed individuals should receive more help and support in the running of their business, a new Government-commissioned report has suggested.
The review, which was led by businesswoman Julie Deane OBE, calls for self-employed workers to be given similar rights to traditional employees.
‘It is important that with the increased growth in self-employment, and the subsequent benefits that this group brings to the economy, that there are systems in place to support the self-employed in the same way as the employed,’ the report stated.
Researchers found that self-employed people now account for a record-breaking 4.6 million, or 15%, of the UK’s workforce.
The review states that choosing to become self-employed ‘should not mean that people are disadvantaged in the support that they receive from the Government’.
Specially, the report says that the Government should consider increasing the first six weeks’ maternity allowance rate paid to self-employed workers. This would ensure that it is in line with the statutory maternity pay that employees currently receive.
The document also calls for the creation of a new ‘Adoption Allowance’ for self-employed parents who choose to adopt. The allowance would operate on the same basis as the existing statutory adoption pay scheme for other employees.
Other recommendations include increasing awareness of the advice and support that is available to self-employed individuals, along with details of shared work spaces, and offering more flexible financial solutions for those running their own business.
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