Controversial minimum service legislation offers “fair compromise to end strike woes” claims Harlow MP Robert Halfon

News / Sat 14th Jan 2023 at 11:28am

INDUSTRIAL action has taken place across almost every sector in recent weeks, causing disruption to commuters, adding extra pressure to emergency services and threatening children with even more school closures says Harlow MP Robert Halfon.

This week, the Government has announced a plan to ensure trade unions maintain a minimum level of service during periods of strike action. 

The new law will ensure that vital services, including healthcare, rail, fire and border security, cannot shut down completely when workers strike, in order to maintain critical and in many cases life-saving services. The Government is also assessing what level of service must be provided by ambulance, fire and rail services during a time of strike, recognising that disruption to blue light services puts lives at immediate risk, whilst working with other sectors to reach voluntary agreements on the level of service to be provided. 

Commenting on the new law, Robert Halfon said, “I welcome the Prime Minister’s invitation to trade union leaders to hold balanced talks this week to avoid further strike action. I understand that some progress has been made but talks will continue and it is my hope that an agreement can be reached.

“I completely understand that rising food, fuel and energy bills are causing many hard working people in Harlow and the villages to face uncertainty this winter but I would like to reassure everybody that the Government is taking decisive action to halve inflation which will help those struggling with the cost of living, especially on food and fuel bills. The Prime Minister’s pledges to grow the economy will create more better-paid jobs and boost skills for people in Harlow; and reducing the national debt will enable greater investment in Harlow schools, healthcare and police. 

“The Government’s plan to create minimum service requirements will protect worker’s right to strike whilst also ensuring that vital public services can continue, protecting local residents and minimising disruption to the wider community.”

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8 Comments for Controversial minimum service legislation offers “fair compromise to end strike woes” claims Harlow MP Robert Halfon:

gary roberts
2023-01-14 12:02:34

"Controversial minimum service legislation offers “fair compromise to end strike woes” claims Harlow MP Robert Halfon." Really? Mr. Halfon must be drinking from the last chance saloon. Why? Well when everything else fails they go back to their core Tory values of division. But unlike in previous years this approach will fail because people have got wise to the nonsense and actually think the unions are pushing for fair employment terms and conditions. And of course if they still go on strike in vital public services and are sacked that just adds to the extreme problems this country already has sadly!

2023-01-14 16:22:24

The current wave of strike are clearly more about getting rid of a democratically elected government and have little to do with wages or terms and condition changes.

David Forman
2023-01-14 16:36:53

Minimum service levels in Europe are achieved through negotiation, plus in Spain and Italy cannot result in dismissal or forced transfer to another work unit if not observed However, this is the opposite of what the Tories want. The European Trade Union Confederation statement says: “If the UK Government are really interested in learning from the best practice in Europe, they would sit down with trade union representatives to negotiate a fair deal as soon as possible, and they would not respond to strikes by bringing in more restrictive legislation.” Please see: https://www.etuc.org/en/pressrelease/anti-strike-law-puts-uk-outside-mainstream

2023-01-14 18:04:32

Spot on Peter. Apart from the NHS Strikes, there is a pattern emerging, which has nothing to do with pay and conditions. Something had to be done.

2023-01-15 01:51:18

This reduction of workers rights must be exactly what Brexiters who promised that leaving the EU would ensure greater protections for British workers were talking about. Perhaps RH would also include Conservative peers in the House of Lords in the list of jobs which require a minimum service level, as they will be voting on such measures. Of the 269 Conservative members of the House of Lords entitled to speak in the chamber, 87 have not spoken or submitted a written question in more than three months – nearly one in three (32%).  More than a fifth of Conservative lords (22%) have not spoken in the chamber in more than 200 days, 15% haven’t spoken in more than a year, and one in 12 (8%) have failed to contribute in more than 1,000 days (even when those who have never spoken in the chamber have been removed from the data). Perhaps MPs should do their own jobs and not a second, third or fourth job before removing workers rights.

gary roberts
2023-01-15 09:00:01

Peter, did the electorate in 2019 vote for three prime ministers in one year with all three having different mandates? Indeed Ms. Truss was voted into office by people in her own party and the current one didn't even do that. As a result this country is a total mess that apparently Mr. Halfon supports.

Kim Oconnor
2023-01-15 09:42:10

Gary you are spot on.

2023-01-16 13:34:24

Of course the spineless Halfoff agrees with his wealthy overlords! Is anybody surprised by this? The government's "minimum service" legislation amounts to little more than forced labour.

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