The Trade Union Bill

Lots of constituents have contacted me recently about the Government’s Trade Union Bill.

I’m strongly opposed to this Bill because it undermines the basic protections that trade unions provide for people at work.   Trade unions are an important part of an open, democratic society.  I am very concerned, therefore, that the Government’s Bill seeks simply to weaken trade unions rather than to work with them in order to help boost economic efficiency and tackle Britain’s major economic challenges including our worrying productivity gap and skills shortages.

I also fear this Bill risks driving a wedge between government, industry, employees and the public by severely restricting the rights of ordinary working people to challenge important workplace issues such as low pay or health and safety concerns. As a result, this Bill could damage industrial relations and make it harder to prevent the strike action and disruption that we all want to avoid.
That’s why I voted against this Bill at every opportunity in the House of Commons. The Bill passed its Third Reading on the 10th November and has progressed to the House of Lords, where I hope substantial changes and improvements can be made to it in order to protect workers’ rights.

I know from the number of e-mails and letters that I’ve received that many constituents share my concerns about this Bill.  I hope the Government finally listen to these views as the Bill progresses through its remaining stages


Hilary Benn
MP for Leeds Central

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