Anything goes? Exploring the limits of employment law in UK hospitality and catering

Ioannou, G. and Dukes, R. (2021) Anything goes? Exploring the limits of employment law in UK hospitality and catering. Industrial Relations Journal, 52(3), pp. 255-269. (doi: 10.1111/irj.12329)

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Abstract

Through a case study of the UK hospitality and catering sector, this article explores the limits of employment law as a means of protecting workers from ill or unfair treatment. Finding microbreaches of the law to be common practice in the sector—akin to industry norms or ‘custom and practice’—it considers the routinisation of these microbreaches as an instance of conflict between formal legal rules and social norms. The conflict is problematic because it means that workers are less likely to perceive breach of their legal rights as an injustice worthy of challenge. The industry norms observed have been formed under the influence of an asymmetrical distribution of information and power, including organisational control over the labour process. If employment law is to be made effective, a realignment of legal rules with social norms is needed and, at the same time, the correction of this asymmetry.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:This project received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 757395).
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Ioannou, Dr Gregoris and Dukes, Professor Ruth
Authors: Ioannou, G., and Dukes, R.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Law
Journal Name:Industrial Relations Journal
Publisher:Wiley
ISSN:0019-8692
ISSN (Online):1468-2338
Published Online:07 May 2021
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2021 The Authors
First Published:First published in Industrial Relations Journal 52(3): 255-269
Publisher Policy:Reproduced under a Creative Commons License

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
302380Work on Demand: Contracting for Work in a Changing EconomyRuth DukesEuropean Research Council (ERC)757359Law