THE PROFESSIONAL CONTRACTORS GROUP has rebranded as IPSE, the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed, as it seeks to better represent all professionals working in the UK's self-employed sector.
Since the financial crisis hit in 2008, the number of people working on a self-employed basis has grown steadily each year, reaching a record 4.59 million in July, according to Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures. The total of self-employed is expected to exceed the number working in the public sector by 2015.
As a result, the PCG has moved to a name it claims better encapsulates the variety of workers it represents in its 22,000-strong membership.
In a letter to members posted online, chairwoman Julie Stewart said: "Self-employment is the zeitgeist. It has grown by an astonishing 39% since 2000 and has outstripped growth in traditional employment by three to one in the last decade. IPSE's aim is to make self-employment central to the economic debate in government and to ensure policies are in place that make it easier to become self-employed and to be self-employed.
"This change is a significant transformation, but we will continue to provide our members with the same best-in-class services and knowledge base that we do today. IPSE will continue to support all freelancers, contractors, independent professionals and the self-employed from all areas of the economy, and we will be able to offer further specific support to individual industry sectors."
The PCG was originally formed in 1999 to challenge the government's IR35 tax rules.
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