Protect trade union rights says councillor

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Councillor Donald Crichton has called on the Comhairle to work with other local authorities and Cosla to explore alternative arrangements to protect trade unions and employees from the worst excesses of the UK Government’s Trade Union Bill.

Cllr Crichton said: “Currently checking off allows trade union subscriptions to be collected through the council’s pay roll system at little or no cost,

“Facility time also allows for trade union representatives to carry out essential work on behalf of employees during working hours. Under the new legislation all that would stop.”

Writing to Comhairle Leader, Angus Campbell, the Loch a Tuath councillor claims that the legislation is draconian and that abolishing checking off and facility time would lead to union membership declining and workers rights less protected.

Cllr Crichton said: “The Comhairle has a good record of working with the unions over the years and that should be maintained especially in the financial climate we find ourselves in.

“Adopting the measures proposed in this legislation will undermine that relationship and weaken trade unions and their ability to protect their members.

“I would hope that as an authority we can work with other local authorities and Cosla to explore alternative arrangements that can maintain good industrial relations and a working partnership with the unions and employees.”