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Synopsis

The leading academic authorities contributing to this book have been involved in major studies carried out for international organisations, individual governments, and national trades' union organisations; in Vulnerable Workers they consider the growth of job insecurity, the prevalence of flexible or temporary work, and the emergence of precarious forms of self-employment. They look at the new market economies of post-communist Eastern Europe and China, where economic development may occur at the expense of workers' lives and health; 'misclassification' by employers of workers as 'contractors', denying them access to rights; and the plight of migrant, transient and 'invisible' workers. The impact of supply chain business strategies on the most vulnerable workers; and on the complex relationships between levels of job security and the presence of different kinds of risks are similarly assessed.

The contributors also propose responses to the challenges they highlight. The role of employee representatives is examined, together with the potential to enhance worker capability through organisational change. New legislative approaches, and changes to traditional compensation and social security systems are considered. Academics and researchers, policy makers, regulators, trades unionists and occupational health professionals - and wise employers - will all find a use for this book.

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