EEA Good Employment Week Highlights Lack of Employment Contracts in Industry

2 December 2023

The EEA has used the recent Good Employment Week to raise awareness of the importance of employing legally, fairly, and kindly. 
Employing legally is not a choice and an employer has a responsibility to ensure that everything is done correctly to protect you and themselves. The focus of the 2024 Good Employment Week was for both employers and grooms ‘putting their hands up’, following a recent industry survey revealing that 55% of grooms that responded have put their hands up to not having a written contract of employment.
This is a deeply concerning statistic and it demonstrates that the equestrian industry remains a place where too many yards are ignoring the most basic employment legislation.
Jim Eyre, CEO of British Equestrian, stated “”Employees are any company’s greatest asset and must be respected, valued, and appreciated – none of us would compromise on equine welfare and wellbeing, and our staff should be no different.

Good employment practices and a positive work environment are imperative to any successful enterprise, and anything less will undermine all the good and hard work elsewhere. No matter how large or small your business, employees must be your priority.”  Staggeringly, 75% of those in part-time or zero hours position stated they do not have a written contract. This is a stark figure and the British Grooms Association (BGA) and Equestrian Employers Association (EEA) are using the Good Employment Week 2023 to inform employers and employees to wise up.

It is a legal requirement for all employers to provide a written statement of the terms of employment, (often referred to as a ‘written contract’), on or before employment begins. The research identified that 63% of those who had not been given one had been in employment for over one year.

The Equestrian Employers Association offers support to all the employer’s who ‘put their hand up’, the online tools available to create not only contracts, but other necessary documents such as the staff handbook and Health & Safety Risk Assessments.

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