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Agency workers should only have equal salary and basic rights, says REC

The Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC) has recommended equal treatment of agency workers should extend only to basic salary and other basic statutory rights.

Kevin Green (pictured), chief executive of the REC, handed proposals to the Agency Workers Directive yesterday to minister of state for employment relations Pat McFadden. Green also suggested the directive should be delayed until October 2011 due to the worsening economic climate.

The EU directive currently proposes giving agency workers equal employment rights after 12 weeks in a placement. But it has met with controversy over the last few months.

Speaking to HR magazine, Green said: "We can't rush this. We need time to make sure this is right. Agency workers number 1.2 million and make up 4.5% or the labour force so naturally there is a huge amount of debate around this." He added: "Mr McFadden was pleased the recommendations were timely."

Green's views were complied with the help of employers such as Adecco and General motors and industry bodies such as the CIPD, Federation of Small Business and the British Chambers of Commerce. Submissions also came from the TUC.