Richard Lochhead

Moray SNP News



Angus Robertson, Member of Parliament for Moray, has highlighted figures which show that countries ranked highest for workers’ rights also have higher productivity than the UK.

The local MP says this underlines the folly of the UK Government’s plans to restrict trade union rights and strengthens the case for full powers over employment law being devolved to Scotland.

According to OECD statistics the vast majority of EU countries, including Germany and France, ranked best by the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) for workers’ rights have higher productivity than the UK.

The UK Government announced in the Queen’s Speech that they would further restrict trade unions right to strike, reforms which Grahame Smith of the STUC has said will “leave Scottish workers with some of the weakest legal protections in the developed world.”

Angus Robertson MP said:

“I regularly receive correspondence from and meet with Moray Trade Union representatives, both individually and through the active Moray Trades Council. The work they do to protect and enhance workers rights must be not be undermined and, instead, can be strengthened by devolving powers and enabling the Scottish Parliament to develop workers rights in a positive and progressive way.

“When I meet Trade Unionists here in Moray they are not out to make life difficult for employers but to build a stronger more productive relationship between employer and employee.

“Strong workers rights are fundamental to developing a fairer society where workers are individually and collectively valued for their contribution to society.

“The UK Government views trade unions as a blockage to better productivity rather than a partner to help deliver a stronger economy with better paid workers and a stronger society.

“My experience in dealing with businesses is that the most successful and respected businesses are the ones that value their employees the best but that will not become the norm under a Tory Government which has restricted access to Employment Tribunals and plans ballot rigging restrictions on the right to strike – it is no friend of working people.

“We cannot allow the UK Government to damage industrial relations and hold back our economy in this way. The UK Government must listen to the calls made by the STUC and the Scottish Government for the devolution of employment law.

“With full powers over trade union and employment policy we can work more effectively in partnership with trade unions, the third sector and business to boost growth, to increase productivity, to support employment and to deliver more and better jobs.”