Remain or Leave - trade deals still pose major threats to workers

12 May 2016

By Adrian Weir, Assistant Chief of Staff, Unite the Union

The cat is out of the bag – the publication last week of the LSE report on the Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions within the Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP) commissioned by the Government has concluded that there’s nothing in for the UK.

A nasty Bill turned into a nasty Act

06 May 2016

By Carolyn Jones, Director, Institute of Employment Rights

The Trade Union Bill has now passed through its Parliamentary stages, receiving Royal Assent on Wednesday 04 May – ironically, the 90th anniversary of the 1926 General Strike.

Rethinking liberalisation – to counter corporate takeover

27 April 2016

By Linda Kaucher, StopTTIP UK

Liberalisation means opening investment opportunities to foreign and transnational investors. While the word is tossed around by journalists and politicians, it is rarely explained. Thus people don’t get the chance to grasp the meaning, to connect it to their own experience, or to recognise that the UK’s policy of total liberalisation is a political choice – and that there are other options. Part of the problem is that prestigious BBC journalists don’t really grasp this meaning themselves.

390,000 women a year are discriminated against in pregnancy yet only 1% take tribunal claim

13 April 2016

By Scarlet Harris, Women’s Equality Officer, TUC Equality and Employment Rights Department.

Last month the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) published its report and recommendations on pregnancy discrimination. In response, the TUC’s Touchstone blog published the article below.


Inform your workforce, get sued. Reporting back in European Works Councils.

11 April 2016

By Stan De Spiegelaere & Romuald Jagodzinski, Researchers at the European Trade Union Institute

On 26 June 2013, the members of the Amcor European Works Council (EWC) received a court ruling stating that they could not use the company intranet to share a report of an EWC meeting directly with the workforce. About a year later, the same European Works Council select committee members were prohibited, by court ruling, from travelling to the UK to talk directly to the employee representatives on the site.

The EU is exporting UK neoliberalism to the rest of Europe

29 March 2016

By Aristea Koukiadaki,Senior Lecturer in Employment Law, School of Law, University of Manchester, Isabel Távora, Lecturer in Human Resource Management at the University of Manchester, Alliance Manchester Business School and Miguel Martínez Lucio,Professor of International HRM at the University of Manchester, Alliance Manchester Business School.

In the first of a series of articles highlighting the impact of EU austerity measures on levels of collective bargaining across seven EU member states, the authors provide an overview of their recent research. Their findings are stark. Measures imposed by the Troika on the seven states studied have resulted in limiting trade union powers and reducing workers’ pay. Future blogs will drill down into the specifics of the seven countries studied. Carolyn Jones

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