Published: Wed, May 17, 2017
Health Care | By Oscar Goodwin

Theresa May vows to advance workers' rights if she wins election

Theresa May vows to advance workers' rights if she wins election

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn shot down Ms May's "nonsense" assertion that she would be a champion for employment rights as a desperate attempts to appeal to the working class.

It means Theresa May is on course to be elected as prime minister when the country votes on June 8.

While the Tories' anti-Trade Union Act, introduced earlier this month, threatens workers' right to take industrial action by doubling the strike notice period to 14 days, and allowing bosses to break strikes by using scab agency workers.

Ms May's administration will hand new powers to the pensions regulator and give the regulator "an automatic power to inspect a takeover could have on the impact on the sustainability of a pension fund, with fines and possible criminal charges against those who break the rules".

On a visit to southern England, May committed to keeping European Union guarantees on workers' rights, getting workers represented on company boards and protecting pensions from "irresponsible behavior by company bosses" - a clear reference to billionaire Philip Green who oversaw the demise of department store BHS.

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The Tories will also pledge that the national living wage, the minimum wage rate for workers aged 25 and over, now £7.50 an hour, would rise "in line with average earnings until 2022".

"Already there are those on her benches itching to scrap basic protections, like the working time directive, which keep workers and the public safe but are decried as needless red tape by many hard right Tories".

The Conservatives said the manifesto promises - to be unveiled in full this week - would represent the "greatest expansion of workers' rights by any Conservative government".

The PM also promised to include representation for workers on company boards through measures including ensuring listed companies either create stakeholder advisory panels, designate an existing non-executive director as employee representative or directly appoint a worker representative to the board.

Liberal Democrat former business secretary Sir Vince Cable said: "The Conservatives tried to ban workers from striking and were blocked by the Liberal Democrats in government".

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-A new statutory right for workers to receive information about key decisions affecting their company.

"It's clear they aren't the party of workers' rights and that you can't trust them to care about you and your family".

Parents who lose a child will also be given rights to bereavement leave and people with fluctuating mental health conditions such as depression will be protected from discrimination under reforms to the Equalities Act, which now covers only constant conditions.

Labour's manifesto, which was leaked to journalists last week, however, does go further.

The opposition said May was "taking working people for fools", while the GMB union said its members would "believe it when they see it". They would have their jobs and employment rights protected when they return to work.

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