The Law of Unintended Consequences

There’s a law in the Netherlands regarding temporary contracts, it says that you cannot have three consecutive temporary contracts with the same employer. The third one should be a permanent contract with all the rights that that entails.

It sounds great in theory.

But the very practical result is that low cost companies simply give two long-term temporary contracts and then don’t renew. However good the performance of the person. This is especially true of call centres and other “low-skilled” work areas.

So rather than protecting workers the law means that many people are now let go, with no redundancy package, into the worst economic climate for finding work in a decade, while the company will recruit new blood and will receive a subsidy to train them.

There’s something wrong there.


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