Ken Loach hailed for his appearance on BBC's 'Question Time'

Ben Arnold
Contributor
Ken Loach (Credit: AP Photo/Geert Vanden Wijngaert)

Filmmaker Ken Loach has been praised for raising the issue of worker's rights and taking the 'gig economy' to task on last night's Question Time.

The veteran director detailed on incident in which a 53-year-old van driver with diabetes was so fearful of losing wages by taking a day off and being fined for not finding a replacement, that he missed vital doctors appointments.

Don Lane, who was a DPD courier from Dorset, later collapsed and died.

“You tell me that's justified. You tell me that's right, that a worker is so terrified of a day off for a sickness because he will be fined,” Loach said.

“That's the gig economy, and that's what it's doing to working people.”

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Many praised the words of the director of movies including Kes, The Wind That Shakes The Barley, and I, Daniel Blake, sharing their thoughts on Twitter.


The director himself also tweeted:

Loach's latest movie, Sorry We Missed You, follows the life of a self-employed van driver who is driven to the brink.

It has been praised by critics as a powerful snapshot of injustice in modern Britain.

Writer Paul Laverty, left, and director Ken Loach pose for photographers at the photo call for the film 'Sorry We Missed You' at the 72nd international film festival, Cannes, southern France, Friday, May 17, 2019. (Photo by Arthur Mola/Invision/AP)

The Guardian's Peter Bradshaw wrote: “I was hit in the solar plexus by this movie, wiped out by the simple honesty and integrity of the performances.”

The Financial Times noted: “In the end credits he [Loach] gives thanks to those drivers whose testimony informed the film but who wished to remain anonymous. He is their much-needed voice and remains that of our moral conscience.”