Shadow business secretary Angela Eagle: Trade union bill is "an attack on basic freedoms"

 
Clara Guibourg
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Eagle: The trade union bill has "no place in modern Britain" (Source: Getty)

Labour’s shadow business secretary Angela Eagle has attacked the trade union bill, calling it “divisive and partisan” in her speech at the Labour Party conference.

Speaking at the party’s conference in Brighton, Eagle denounced the government’s planned bill, which will rewrite strike legislation:

It is an attack on basic freedoms. It has no place in modern Britain. And we will fight to defeat it.

We already have the most restrictive trade union laws in Europe and yet, the Tories want to go even further.

Eagle, elected as shadow business secretary in new party leader Jeremy Corbyn’s shadow cabinet, argued that the bill would “silence the legitimate collective voice of trade unions”, while “leaving the Tories’ millionaire donors completely untouched”.

The trade union bill proposed by the Conservative government is currently in its second reading, and would introduce a 50 per cent threshold for ballot turnout in all strike votes, and another 40 per cent threshold of support to take industrial action in “protected” sectors.

The shadow business secretary also vowed that Labour would work to strengthen the UK’s flailing productivity by supporting “strategic industries” like renewables and the steel industry, and investing in education:

It takes us four days in this country to produce the same amount as they produce in 3 days in Germany, France and America, because we aren't training and equipping our workforce properly.

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