Borders MP responds to questions by Trades Council on the Trades Union Bill and Jus-Rol
Along with my colleagues in the SNP Westminster Group, I will vigorously oppose the Trade Union Bill believing this action seeks to deprive workers of their basic rights. These rights were hard won over the past 100 years and we will all do our utmost to prevent them from becoming law.
Trade unions are key social partners playing an important role in sustaining effective democracy in society, particularly in the workplace, and the existence of good employment practices is a key contributor to economic competitiveness and social justice.
As you may be aware, Scottish Government Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills and Training Roseanna Cunningham MSP, has written to UK Ministers seeking information and a discussion about the provisions of the Trade Union Bill and how they can protect Scotland’s distinct approach to industrial relations. Scottish Ministers we will continue to put forward the view that it should be the prerogative of Scottish Ministers to decide on check-off and facility time in Scotland.
We are also opposed to restrictions on Trade Unions using social media and support the usage of safe and secure online voting to maximise participation as well as changes to regulations regarding agency workers.
Your second point on the closure of the Jus-Rol plant is also pertinent – it will indeed have a massive impact on my constituency.
This is my own press release from Friday 30th October:
“This news clearly comes as a huge blow to the town and it is going to be a deeply worrying time for the workforce and their families.
“The plant itself is on the English side of the border, but any closure would have a knock on effect here in Scotland – not least because some of the employees will live in my constituency and through spending, contribute to our own local economy.
“My MP counterpart for Berwick will obviously take the lead on this, and that’s absolutely right and proper. However, I'm keen to help if and where I can, as is my MSP colleague Paul Wheelhouse.
“I've already been in touch with the Scottish Government to see if it can offer assistance for members of the workforce living in Scotland through its PACE programme, which proves practical help for people facing redundancy.
"It has told me it is ready and willing to provide this support. But let's just hope that the situation can be resolved and that these jobs can be preserved."
I stand by my pledge to offer whatever support might be of help.
Thanks again for getting in touch.
Calum Kerr MP Berwickshire