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TUC Risks Picks Up On Unionsafety Petition Calling For Protection Of Safety Rights

Our petition to the TUC and to ALL Trade Unions has certainly been given good media coverage amongst Trade Unionists, so much so that now TUC Risks editor has given the petition a boost! Risks is the TUC's weekly online bulletin for safety reps and others, and goes out to hundeds of USRs from acorss the Trade Union movement on a weekly basis.

Here is how Risks reported on our petition:

A group of union safety reps from the north-west of England has launched an online petition calling for a high-profile union campaign to protect workplace safety rights as Brexit looms.

The union reps, members of the union CWU who run the ‘Union Safety’ website, want the TUC “to strengthen trade union partnerships and put prime focus on individual unions to prioritise and increase focus on their individual health and safety departments and structures, this is in readiness for post-Brexit Britain and its workforce.”

The petition says this union campaign is important because “health and safety was the main reason for the birth of the trade union movement.” It adds that trade unions should “immediately prioritise health and safety now and strengthen links with other unions. Every individual worker has the right to a safe and healthy working environment. Workers are better protected with a strong and robust union that adopt a prime focus on health and safety at work.”

In a report nearly a year ago, the TUC exposed the potential threat to safety from Brexit and has demanded repeatedly that the government maintain and improve existing employment and safety standards.

In a speech in Brussels this week, TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said:

“Theresa May promises that workers’ rights will be ‘protected and enhanced’ after Brexit. But unions are sceptical – with good reason. We know that there are many Conservatives who would like nothing better than a bonfire of working rights, environmental regulations and safety standards. The cliff-edge Brexiteers have key rights in their sights – including protections for agency workers, action against discrimination, and health and safety.”

She urged prime minister Theresa May to “stand up to the hardliners in your party and give working people the guarantee they need. The EU has said that workers’ rights should be part of the final agreement – now the UK government should do the same. Commit to ensuring that no matter what kind of Brexit we get, workers’ rights in the UK will keep pace with those across Europe.”

Employers’ body the CBI took a similar line this week, noting “opportunities for divergence are vastly outweighed by the costs of deviating from rules necessary to ensure smooth access to the EU, the UK's largest trading partner.” CBI director general Carolyn Fairbairn said most businesses believed diverging from EU rules and regulations “will make them less globally competitive.”

You can sign the petition here

Source: TUC Risks

Sign-up to the TUC Risks weekly health & safety bulletin here

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