Trade Union Bill (July 2016)

I recognise that trade unions are valuable institutions in British society and dedicated trade unionists have a strong history of working hard to represent their members. They have campaigned for improved safety at work and give support to their members when it is required. However I believe it is only fair that the rights of unions are balanced with the rights of hardworking taxpayers who rely on key public services.

The aim of the Bill is to rebalance the interests of employers, employees and the public with the freedom of trade unions to strike. At present, it is the case that a small minority of union members can disrupt the lives of millions of commuters, parents, workers and employers at short notice and without any clear support from the other members of the union. When the impact on the normal life of a large group of people is considered, I believe it is common sense that such strikes should only take place on the basis of a reasonable turnout and substantial vote in favour by those eligible to vote.

Please rest assured, all measures included in the Bill will be debated and fully scrutinised by Parliament. Interested parties will also have plenty of opportunities to put their views forward. I am aware that many sectors such as the Emergency Services, National Health Service, Education and many others have already done so.

July 2016