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Unionline July17

UnionLine Scotland is a trading style of DJ Mackay & Partners LLP, a limited liability partnership registered in Scotland (SO305202) and an outsourced agent of UnionLine.
UnionLine is a trading style of Trade Union Legal LLP, authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority; 608309
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The Legal Services Newsletter for GMB and CWU Members and their Families
July 2017
Matthew Taylor, chief executive of the Royal
Society for the encouragement of Arts,
Manufactures and Commerce, has now
published his review into modern workplace
practices. Both GMB and CWU have heavily
critiqued aspects of the report as it falls
short in fixing a system which sees 10 million
UK workers trapped in precarious work.
Dave Ward, CWU General Secretary, said:
“For workers across the UK the labour
market is like the Wild West,” he stressed.
“Exploitation is exploitation whether it’s
in a sweatshop or at the end of an iPhone
and the Taylor Review falls way short of
addressing the problems workers face.”
“With six million people earning less than a
genuine living wage, it is astonishing that this
review is watering down workers’ rights to the
minimum wage. Far from creating a country that
works for everyone, Theresa May is creating
a country in which we work until we drop.
Dave concludes: “The CWU is calling for an
agreement on a common bargaining agenda,
a trade union manifesto on what constitutes
a new deal for workers and a well constructed
plan including action to achieve it.”
“It’s incumbent upon unions to step up,
work together and deliver a new kind of
trade unionism. We must make the future
world of work the number one political
issue and organise workers everywhere.”
The report believes that the current
categorisation of workers is particularly difficult
to understand and suggests that, effectively
renaming some workers as “dependent
contractors” will assist with this. Taylor
rejects the idea that employment status in
the ET should replicate that used by HMRC
and be a binary choice between employee
and self-employment. He does propose that
any decision by HMRC that an individual is
an employee should be requisite on an ET.
Tim Roache, GMB General Secretary, said:
“For millions of people the world of work is
like the Wild West – people don’t know if they
are coming or going. Given the epidemic of
precarious work in the UK, this report simply
does not go far enough in fixing a broken
system that gives employers the choice of
whether to treat their workers fairly or not.”
“Action on the Gig Economy is overdue, but
help for agency workers, those on zero hours
or short hours contracts won’t happen by
asking nicely or hoping bad employers find a
moral compass down the back of the couch.”
“We need regulations and proper enforcement
– until we get that, we will all continue to
pay for shareholder profits though lost tax
revenue and the knock on effect poor work
has for public services and our communities.
“Words on decent work are always welcome,
but they’re meaningless without determined
action to back them up and challenge
those who profit from insecurity.”
The report rests firmly with the government
and whether it intends to implement the
proposals contained in the report. Theresa May
has said very little about what her government
intends to do as some of Taylor’s proposals
need changes to primary legislation.
Matthew Taylor – Report into
Modern Workplace falls short
on fixing a broken labour market
UnionLine Scotland is a trading style of DJ Mackay & Partners LLP, a limited liability partnership registered in Scotland (SO305202) and an outsourced agent of UnionLine.
UnionLine is a trading style of Trade Union Legal LLP, authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority; 608309
UnionLine NEWS
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Opposition parties pledge support for workers’ rights
and unite against the Great Repeal Bill
Reports earlier in the year stated “fraudulent”
insurance claims of food poisoning by
holidaymakers looking to recoup the cost of
all-inclusive deals were leading to package
deals being taken off the market.
In response to the reports, the Government
now plans to introduce a series of caps on the
cost of settling sickness claims to make their
legal costs predictable to tour operators.
A system of “fixed recoverable legal costs”
already operates for claims affecting operators
in England and Wales, but tour operators that
sell holidays abroad are not currently covered.
If the Government is successful in extending
the scheme to overseas holidays then tour
operators will instead pay a prescribed sum
depending on the value of the claim.
Tony Rupa, Head of CWU’s Legal Services
says; “This appears to be another kneejerk
reaction by a Government, led by the
insurance lobby. First we had bogus whiplash
and now we have bogus holiday sickness
claims.” Says Tony.
“Instead of labelling everyone that has a car
accident or falls ill on holiday as fraudsters,
why don’t they tackle the real fraud and
shoddy practises of claims companies that
hawk people over the phone, package
holiday firms hiking up prices during school
holiday weeks and the insurance companies
increasing your premiums.”
Government clampdown
on bogus holiday
sickness claims
Government Ministers have announced measures to clampdown
on bogus holiday sickness claims they say are driving up the price
of taking the family abroad.
If you’ve had a problem with your package holiday, give us a call on: 0300 333 0303
The opposition engendered across the
political spectrum upon the introduction
of the Great Repeal Bill exposed just how
weak the Government’s Parliamentary
position is post general election.
Upon introduction in July, it became immediately
clear that the Government face opposition to getting
the bill through from Labour, the Liberal Democrats,
the SNP, the Greens, Plaid Cymru and Tory remainers.
The bill, officially titled the European Union
(Withdrawal) Bill, will repeal the European
Communities Act of 1972 and bring the decades of
EU law onto the UK statute book.
Publication of the bill on 13 July 2017 was most
remarkable for immediately exposing just how much
opposition the Government face in getting it passed.
Labour says it will not support the bill in its current
form and is demanding concessions in six areas,
including the incorporation of the European Charter
of Fundamental Rights into British law.
The party wants guarantees workers’ rights will
be protected and also want curbs on the power of
Government Ministers to alter legislation without
full parliamentary scrutiny. “Far too much of it
seems to be a process where the Government…
will be able to bypass Parliament,” said Jeremy
Corbyn. Labour leader. “We will make sure there is
full parliamentary scrutiny. We have a Parliament
where the Government doesn’t have a majority,
we have a country which voted in two ways on
Leave or Remain. “The majority voted to leave and
we respect that, but they didn’t vote to lose jobs
and they didn’t vote to have Parliament ridden
roughshod over.”
The Liberal Democrats warned that the Government
faces defeat, unless it agrees to concessions in areas
including parliamentary scrutiny and workers’ rights.
The Scottish and Welsh Governments have to give
“legislative consent” to the bill before it can become
law – something they have said they are not willing
to do.
In a joint statement, first ministers Nicola Sturgeon
and Carwyn Jones, described the bill as a “naked
power-grab” by Westminster that undermined the
principles of devolution.
They say the bill returns powers from Brussels solely
to the UK Government and Parliament and “imposes
new restrictions” on the Scottish Parliament and the
Welsh Assembly.
The bill’s passage, which will begin in the autumn.

Posted: 7th August 2017

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