LETTER: Our freedoms are in jeopardy

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I am very proud to be a member of a trade union but I am very distressed to what I feel is a ‘war’ on people like me from this government.

My union has supported me at work during these past very tough years.  It has been difficult to cope with lower wages and rising living costs, but the union has helped to keep standards and safety at work, and has fought to save jobs.

I do not understand why this government is now planning new laws that attack the vital work unions do. Instead, they should be thanking working people and their unions for putting our shoulders to the wheel during the recession, for working co-operatively with employers to find solutions to problems at work.

My fear is that the government’s hatred of unions will result in very bad laws for the British people. Their appalling Trade Union Bill will not modernise industrial relations, as the government claims, but will make disputes more bitter.

Were the government truly interested in improving things at work, then they would not be undermining basic rights – and were they truly interested in raising turnouts in strike ballots, they would be bringing modern, secure voting to workplaces.

As a proud Brit, I am deeply shocked by moves to take apart our fundamental freedoms. The land of Magna Carta should not be legislating to make lawful strikes all but impossible, and our government should not be seeking to silence people on social media.

As Tory MP David Davis says, the Trade Union Bill is like something from the dark days of Franco.

Nobody seems to want this bill – not the police, the HR managers, nor civil rights groups. It has no place in modern-day Britain.  It should be scrapped, now.

Derek Hansford

Top Road, Hooe

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