Labour to en­gi­neer work­ers’ rights vote

Sunday Mirror (Northern Ireland) - - News -

Labour is to force a Com­mons vote this week to en­sure worker rights are pro­tected after Brexit. Shadow Brexit Sec­re­tary Keir Starmer fears the Tories plan to wa­ter down paid hol­i­days and EU rules on equal wages.

He will chal­lenge Theresa May’s con­tro­ver­sial With­drawal Bill, which will trans­fer all EU laws into Bri­tish ones when we leave Europe on March 29, 2019.

The Prime Min­is­ter wants to use so-called Henry VIII powers to al­low min­is­ters to amend leg­is­la­tion with­out the ap­proval of Par­lia­ment.

Mrs May is on record as ob­ject­ing to the EU so­cial chap­ter which guar­an­tees ma­ter­nity pay and stops any­one be­ing forced to work more than 48 hours a week.

In­ter­na­tional Trade Sec­re­tary Liam Fox has said it should be eas­ier for bosses to fire staff, and in 2012 Com­mons leader An­drea Lead­som said work­place rights should be scrapped for small com­pa­nies.

In 2014 For­eign Sec­re­tary Boris John­son said: “The weight of EU em­ploy­ment reg­u­la­tion is back-break­ing.”

Mr Starmer will de­mand that as­sur­ances are added to the Bill so that the same se­cu­rity work­ers en­joy now will con­tinue after Brexit.

He told Brexit Count­down: “Tak­ing back con­trol did not mean hand­ing sweep­ing new powers to min­is­ters to tear up worker rights.

“The bill must in­clude a guar­an­tee the UK will not lag be­hind Europe in these ar­eas.”

And TUC Gen­eral Sec­re­tary Frances O’Grady added: “The bill must be rewritten.

“The Brexit deal must guar­an­tee Bri­tish work­ers will never be left with weaker rights than Euro­pean work­ers.”

RIGHTS AT RISK A Bri­tish worker

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