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Castle Business and HR News December Roundup

Published 15 December 2014

Our roundup of the latest business and HR news stories which are making headway in the press. This month we feature a look at the increasing decline in diversity in the boardroom; assess the realities of unpaid internships; highlight the culture of bullying plaguing the staff of the NHS; take another look at the realities of zero hours contracts and look at a new stance an employer is taking on smoking within the grounds of the organisation.

Lack of diversity on boardrooms increasing despite Westminster push

The boardrooms of Britain’s biggest companies are becoming more dominated by white people despite business secretary Vince Cable demanding that firms increase their ethnic diversity.

All-white executive teams run 69% of FTSE 100 companies – up from 65% in February. The diminished ethnic diversity in the boardroom has emerged despite Cable calling on companies to ensure their executive teams better reflect the wider population.

Unpaid internships rig the system. Curb them, now:

“Labour could end the spectacle of young people half-killing themselves to get a foot in the door."

With more than one in three graduate interns are working for nothing, Owen Jones examines the world of the unpaid internship and takes a look at Labour’s movment towards backing a four-week limit on unpaid internships.

Claims of bullying culture among staff at Britain's biggest NHS mental health trust

The UK's biggest mental health NHS trust, which covers Broadmoor Hospital and units looking after the most vulnerable female patients, is in turmoil following widespread allegations of bullying, a critical Care Quality Commission inspection report and the sudden resignation of its chairman.

Zero-hours workers 'earn less' than permanent staff

Workers on zero-hours contracts earn nearly £300 a week less than permanent employees, according to a new report. Average weekly earnings for zero-hour workers are £188, compared with £479 for permanent staff, found the report by union organisation the TUC.

Staff who flout smoking rules at hospitals could be sacked

AROUND 13,000 staff members at Nottingham's hospitals have been told they could be sacked if they are caught smoking in hospital grounds. Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust – which runs the Queen's Medical Centre and City Hospital – has reinforced its smoking policy in a crackdown against the habit.

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