Justin Madders

Working Hard for Ellesmere Port & Neston

  • Home /
  • News / Justin attacks “cynical and pernicious” Trade Union Bill

Justin attacks “cynical and pernicious” Trade Union Bill

Justin Madders, Labour MP for Ellesmere Port & Neston attacked the Government’s controversial Trade Union Bill, describing it as “prejudiced” during a debate on Monday (14th September).

The Bill, passed its second reading by 33 votes, amid claims that it represents the biggest attack on workers' rights for a generation. The bill will now be scrutinised line by line before coming back to the House of Commons for its third reading, when a further vote will determine whether it is passed to the House of Lords.

The Bill contains a number of controversial measures, including huge restrictions on peaceful picketing and protests. If the Bill is passed, striking workers will have to tell their employers of all their plans – including what they will post on Facebook and Twitter – two weeks before they strike.

Other proposals in the Bill include introducing thresholds for strike action, allowing employers to break strikes by bringing in agency workers to cover for strikers and forcing trade unions and lawyers to share details about their members, a measure that Justin claims, “puts trade union membership on a par with the activities of criminals and terrorists.”

During the debate, a number of MPs including Chris Matheson (City of Chester) and Margaret Greenwood (Wirral West) joined Justin in praising the work of the Unite trade union in securing a future for the Vauxhall plant in Ellesmere Port, which helped to protect thousands of jobs in the local area.

Justin concluded his contribution to the debate by saying, “there is absolutely nothing in the Bill that we can commend. There is nothing in it to tackle the industrial relations challenges that we face, and nothing to protect centuries-old principles of justice and confidentiality. Instead, we have been presented with a cynical and pernicious Bill that should be consigned to the dark recesses of prejudice whence it came.”

Commenting after the debate, Justin said:

“There are thousands of trade union members in Ellesmere Port & Neston and it’s disgraceful that the Tories are seeking to attack their rights in this way. They are not radicals, but ordinary men and women, who want to secure decent conditions at work. Trade unions can also play a vital role in the economy, as we saw when Unite worked in partnership with management to save the Vauxhall plant.

Strike action has fallen by 90% in the past two decades, so there is absolutely no evidence to suggest that this Bill is needed. It is a deeply prejudiced Bill by the Tories and represents a serious abuse of power, with the state being utilised for political ends.

This Bill is draconian, vindictive and represents a serious attack on civil liberties condemned by everyone from Liberty to veteran Tory MP David Davis. I’ll fight to oppose it every step of the way.”

The Labour Party will place cookies on your computer to help us make this website better.

Please read this to review the updates about which cookies we use and what information we collect on our site.

To find out more about these cookies, see our privacy notice. Use of this site confirms your acceptance of these cookies.