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Foreign Labour Protests

Protest over foreign labour fear

So, let me get this straight, these protesters are proposing a nationalistic "jobs for the boys" strategy? And there was me thinking we might be getting away from those sorts of antiquated views and awarding jobs on merit.

If British labour is not competitive with Foreign labour, then surely that's what needs to be addressed rather than removing the competition entirely?

Nationalism has no place in deciding job suitability, if our national work force is not cheap enough or not up to the job then that's what we should be looking to rectify.


( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
1st Feb, 2009 10:33 (UTC)
Plus, if they carry on like this those workers will find themselves out of a job eventually as companies go abroad. It might not be possible in the case of an oil refinery, but you can bet that if there are redundancies that certain names will find their way to the top of the list.
1st Feb, 2009 11:31 (UTC)
As I understand it the argument is not so simplistic. The contract has excluded British workers from applying for the work, thus they are excluded from competing in the first place. This may be illegal but it's yet to be tested in court.
1st Feb, 2009 17:53 (UTC)
The contract has excluded British workers from applying for the work

From what I gather the contract was awarded to an Italian firm who are using their existing permanent workforce to do the work (who happen to be foreign), which seems perfectly reasonable, at which point there wouldn't have been many temporary vacancies to apply for (and apparently there are quite a few of these that have gone to local people).

The common market should have give British workers a right to apply for any of those permanent vacancies if they came up in the same way as nationals of other EU member states have a right to work here.

Where's the illegality in that?
3rd Feb, 2009 21:32 (UTC)
It was my understanding that the subcontractors were discriminating on the grounds of nationality against British workers in recruitment. However it seems that it was a case of an Italian crew being available quickly and cheaply. In which case I broadly agree with you.

There is the possibility that freedom of movement and labour is being used to undermine local collective bargaining agreements in order to lower working conditions under the guise of economy. My attitude to this is that just as employers and employment law has become international so should collective bargaining agreements to prevent exploitation of a workforce under increasing economic pressure.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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