By Jonathan London on 20th November 2014

High hopes as new ‘freelance tsar’ announced

Yesterday (Wednesday November 19th) marked the sixth National Freelancers Day in which the strong army of UK workers who are continuing to turn to freelancing were celebrated, and this year’s event came with some very encouraging news.

The government has announced that it has appointed David Morris MP to become the country’s first-ever ambassador for the self employed. The Conservative MP for Morecambe and Lunesdale will be taking to the role in a bid to support the growing number of freelancers who work for themselves, which currently stands at just under five million.

National Freelancers Day had aimed to focus on a number of issues which freelancers face on a daily basis, including the lack of government support that has been felt in the past. As 15.9 per cent of the UK’s workforce is made up of those who are self employed, it has never been more important that freelancers’ voices and opinions are heard.

The announcement of the so-called ‘freelance tsar’ has been very much welcomed by The Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed (IPSE).

Simon McVicker, director of policy and external affairs at IPSE, said: ‘The appointment of an ambassador for freelancers shows that the Government are ready to take action on the issues facing the millions of people working independently across the UK. It is immensely encouraging to hear Mr Morris, MP for Morecambe & Lunesdale and a small business owner himself, will champion our cause at the very heart of Government.’

This wasn’t the only encouraging news that freelancers have had this week, as the government also announced that it was thinking about introducing maternity pay for self-employed mothers. As the number of women who are working for themselves continues to grow at a fast pace, with some attributing this to the flexibility it offers when it comes to juggling work and home life, this will no doubt be very much welcomed if it is actioned.

Matthew Hancock, the minister for Business, Enterprise and Energy, said of this: We’re looking at maternity pay and pensions. It’s not like being in a big company where someone can cover for you.…

One thing that is certain is that it is great news that the government is beginning to invest more in helping the country’s growing army of freelancers.

Jonathan London Written by Jonathan London

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