Blacklisted workers should use a special blacklisting ‘hotline’ set up by Unite in retaliation to construction employers who are attempting to launch a compensation scheme that has not been agreed by the unions.
Unite is also determined to ensure any scheme which is agreed by the unions, means a job for blacklisted workers and upskilling if relevant. Unite believes this is the only true litmus test as compensation is not just about money but dignity, justice and the human right to work.
Around 3,200 names were included on the blacklist, which was uncovered by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) after a raid five years ago on the Consulting Association. Unions fear that employers may be contacting people on the list.
The union is urging those that receive the shock revelations not to fall for employer attempts to lock them into a compensation scheme called ‘The Workers Compensation Scheme’, which has not been agreed by the unions, because any compensation could fall far short of what the victims could otherwise get through union representation. Representation facilitated by Unite in respect of blacklisting claims guarantees that 100 per cent of any award is paid to the member.
Unite is urging its members to contact the Unite ‘hotline’ on 0800 587 7539 which will immediately direct you to the union’s lawyers who will advise callers on the next steps.
Unite assistant general secretary, Gail Cartmail said: “We urge the victims of blacklisting and their families to use our hotline or contact their union rather than fall for employer attempts to buy them off. Lives were ruined and families were torn apart - victims of blacklisting deserve the best legal support rather than a scheme designed by employers to limit their exposure, rather than properly compensate the victims.
“The employers’ compensation scheme is also in danger of becoming a charter for companies to blacklist workers. It’s a message to bad employers that for a few thousand pounds they can blacklist workers.
“Unite is also determined to hold out for the union’s red line in any compensation scheme, which must mean a job for blacklisted workers and upskilling if relevant. Unite believes this is the only true litmus test as compensation is not just about money but dignity, justice and the human right to work.”
Contact: Ciaran Naidoo on 07768 931 315
Notes to editors
• Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.