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Question for Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy

UIN HL8164, tabled on 15 September 2020

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the recent report by Culture Shift, Maintaining Workplace culture in a rapidly changing environment, published on 11 September.

Answered on

25 September 2020

Remote working is more appropriate for some roles and sectors than others, which is why we have been consistent in making the distinction between those who can and those who cannot work from home as part of our COVID-19 guidance. We also appreciate that the appropriateness of remote working depends on an individual’s personal circumstances and remote working environment.

The Government has committed to consulting on making flexible working the default and we will use this consultation to consider the lessons learned from COVID-19. The consultation will consider flexible working in all its forms – it is not just about where people work, but also when they work and their associated working patterns.

On the report’s wider observations around problematic behaviour in the workplace, the government is already seeking to address these issues. Last year we held a consultation to ensure that laws to protect people from sexual harassment at work are operating effectively – and at the start of this year we ran a nationally-representative survey that will further develop our understanding of the problem and its extent.

We are also supporting the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)’s work to develop a statutory Code of Practice on sexual harassment and harassment in the workplace, which will be based on the technical guidance they published in January.