The result means that the next government will have to be created through the formation of a partnership, with the Conservatives set likely to structure a minority government with the support of Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist party (DUP). However, the weakness of the mandate raises huge questions for the next government.
At so early a point, it is not yet clear what deals could be formed, or if there will be a deal at all.
Should the Conservative party fail, Labour has said that they are ready to form a minority government.
Parliament is due to meet for the first time on 13th June, with the next big date on the 19th June, when the Brexit talks will begin. This is the first big test that will show if the government has enough votes to get its programme of proposed new laws passed to deliver a new deal for working people.
Frances O’Grady, TUC general secretary said:
“It’s clear that there is no mandate for a no-deal Brexit. The government should go back to the drawing board and negotiate a Brexit deal that puts UK jobs, decent wages and workers’ rights first.”
So what does this mean for the HR world? First and foremost, more uncertainty. The economic seas have calmed after Brexit, but the uncertainty of a hung Parliament is almost sure to send markets tumbling. What is more, May’s lack of a mandate may lead to a potentially weak Brexit deal that could be bad for British jobs.
Secondly, the Tory manifesto, which the party has effectively been elected on, will now have to pass muster with the DUP. Rebellious backbench Tories are also likely to threaten legislation that they don’t agree with.
To recap on the policies the Conservative party promised to put in place for HR, read HRreview’s general election manifesto breakdown and remind yourself of the promises Theresa May made for workplace reforms.
Enrique Garcia, a consultant for ELAS specialising in employment law said:
It is unclear what this means for business and employment law. It is not clear what policies the Conservatives will need to drop in order to get the DUP on side or whether they will continue their policies in full and hope to garner support from other parties in order to squeeze them through Parliament. Despite the political excitement as how this will pan out, for business and employment law the future is uncertain and quite literally anything can happen.
The Conservative party discussed workplace family rights and bereavement leave in their manifesto. Alan Price, Employment Law and HR Director at Peninsula commented:
The Conservatives also campaigned on the basis of increasing workplace family rights through creating a statutory right to time off for carers and child bereavement leave; increasing the National Living Wage to 60% of median income by 2020 and amending disability laws to ensure short-term mental health conditions are protected. For now, businesses and employers are likely to find themselves in a further period of uncertainty until the future government and employment law initiatives are confirmed.