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2.3m Brits struggling due to zero hour contracts


Research from the Debt Advisory Centre (DAC) has shown that 2.3 million people in the UK are struggling with fluctuating incomes due to zero hours, flexible or temporary contracts.

The research showed that 9.5 million people in the UK are on a contract were their income fluctuates week to week, and 2.3 million of these are struggling with debt because of it.

A zero hour contract means that an employee has no minimum contacted hours, meaning that the employer doesn’t have to give them any shifts to work in the week. When people have bills, rent or mortgages to pay, the uncertainty of their next wage packet can be a real cause for concern, and can make it extremely difficult to manage finances efficiently. The research showed that two thirds of those with fluctuating incomes find it hard to meet all of their financial commitments.

Separate research for DAC carried out in January found that 1 in 6 (16%) Brits consider themselves to have a debt problem, the equivalent of 8 million people across the UK. This suggests that a potential 2.3 million people with variable incomes may be struggling with a debt problem.

Ian Williams, spokesman for DAC, says: “More and more workers have no certainty about how much work they will get each week or month, and therefore how much they will earn. This makes budgeting for regular bills and living costs, as well as debt repayments, extremely challenging.”

“Those trying to cope with problem debts whilst managing a flexible income should be aware that they don’t have to put up with it alone – they can seek help. Speaking to an independent source of debt advice could help them to get back on their feet and work through their financial difficulties.”

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