Construction firms that want to build in Liverpool will have to agree a six-point charter to ensure that workers receive the minimum employment conditions.
The charter, which has been drawn up by the unions Unite, Ucatt and the GMB, is designed to stamp out ‘notorious’ industry practices, such as bogus self-employment schemes, on any construction site within the city limits.
The three unions will be signing the document, along with the mayor of Liverpool Joe Anderson, at the mayoral office in the Cunard Building, the Pier Head at 13.00 on Thursday (10 September).
The charter states: “It goes without saying that the health and safety of all workers is paramount. The construction industry is a dangerous industry and consequently we expect health & safety standards to be rigorously implemented and adhered to.
“We also expect welfare facilities for construction workers to be appropriate to the 21st century, such as toilets, mess, and drying facilities.”
The unions and the mayor point out that they are ‘acutely aware’ of the projected skill shortages that exist in all areas of the construction industry.
The charter adds: “This means expecting major contractors who have won work in our area to offer proper apprenticeships to the youth of the city.
“We also support other initiatives whose aim is to improve or expand the education and training of employers and employees engaged on construction projects across our city.
“Liverpool city council is a ‘living wage’ employer and believes that workers should be fairly rewarded for their efforts.
“We also believe that all workers have the right to paid holidays, access to a sickness benefit scheme, a decent pension, accident compensation and the comfort of knowing that a death in service scheme is in operation.”
The city council believes that trade unions play a vital role in creating a safe and productive worksite, and developing good industrial relations.
The six points of the charter call for:
The employment of all construction operatives under the terms and conditions set out in the relevant national agreements: JIB, JIBPMES, HVAC, CIJC, NAECI, and TICA
The promotion of the benefits of belonging to a recognised trade union
The recognition of onsite shop stewards who have an important role to play in achieving and promoting good industrial relations
Trade unions retaining responsibility to appoint any health & safety representative to reflect their members’ priorities
The active promotion of the election of workplace health & safety reps and support for their role in helping to ensure a safe site
The provision of equality of opportunity for all, including the acknowledgement that the blacklisting of workers, for whatever reason, has no place in our society.
Notes to editors:
The media is warmly welcomed to the signing ceremony at the Cunard Building at 13.00 on Thursday (10 September).
For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble in the Unite press office on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940.
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.