Blacklisting update: Chuka Umunna secures debate in parliament
- Shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna has described the blacklisting of workers as a ‘national scandal’.
- Balfour Beatty admitted checking the names of prospective workers against the Consulting Association blacklist on the Olympics project.
- Sir Robert McAlpine Limited (Olympic Stadium) and Skanska (Media Centre) both continue to deny any blacklisting on the Olympics.
- UCATT has sent out letters to hundreds of members whose names appear on the blacklist. GMB has done the same and no doubt UNITE will soon be doing the same with their members as well. This is after the unions won a concession from the Information Commissioner’s Office to allow them to check their membership lists against the Consulting Association blacklist database.
Full House of Commons Debate here (lasts two and a half hours)
Dave Smith says:
“Credit where credit is due, the MPs did a pretty good job.
Chuka Ummuna, Ian Murray, John McDonnell, Michael Meacher, Steve Rotheram, Ian Lavery, Natascha Engel, Tessa Jowell, Michael Meacher, John Mann, Jim McGovern, Dave Anderson and others.
Well done sisters and brothers.”
And there have been regular reports in The Mirror by Andrew Penman & Nick Sommerlad.
- Crossrail is also under attack and expected to give evidence [to the Scottish Affairs Committee] soon – 28 workers were removed from the project for raising health and safety concerns.
- At Crossrail: 28 UNITE union members who worked for the E.I.S. electrical firm elected union reps who raised concerns about the safety of high voltage cables, the reps were suspended from site and a few weeks later, the E.I.S. contract was unexpectedly finished 3 years early.
- Both Crossrail and BFK have been named as respondents in an Employment Tribunal being taken by Frank Morris – blacklisted UNITE union rep. This claim is being brought under the new Blacklisting Regs 2010 that were introduced in the last days of the Labour government. What is different about these Regs is that the claimant doesn’t need to be an employee of the company – they apply to any “person” – as Frank Morris did not work directly for Crossrail or BFK but for E.I.S. this will be a test case of how the law is applied. Crossrail is also expected to be asked to give evidence at the Select Committee in due course.