Lib Dem minister to be lobbied over Agricultural Wages Board

Lib Dem minister to be lobbied over Agricultural Wages Board

03 April 2013

The Liberal Democrat minister for agriculture and food David Heath will be lobbied on Saturday (6 April), as Unite intensifies its campaign in the run-up to MPs voting on the future of the Agricultural Wages Board.

Unite activists will be driving home their message for the Agricultural Wages Board’s retention, which protects the incomes of 150,000 agricultural workers, when they lobby outside David Heath's constituency surgery between 10:00-11.30 this Saturday.

The surgery will be held in The Library, Justice Lane, Frome, Somerset, BA11 1BE. 

Unite will be mounting an intensive lobbying campaign in the run-up to the crucial Commons vote on the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform bill on 16 April – and points out that David Heath, the MP for Somerton and Frome, had previously expressed his support for the Agricultural Wages Board’s retention.

Unite national officer for agriculture Julia Long said: “David Heath is being lobbied as he is responsible for driving through the proposed abolition of the Agricultural Wages Board, having previously supported for it.

“The crunch vote on the Agricultural Wages Board is on 16 April – when MPs vote on whether to maintain the board which has been effective in the last 65 years in protecting the incomes of some of the lowest paid workers in the country.

“Unite will be campaigning strongly in the run-up to the vote to retain the Agricultural Wages Board. Supermarkets and the growers, who supply them, are behind the AWB’s abolition proposal as they want to drive down workers’ wages to poverty levels.” 

Unite has said that 60 per cent of responses to the government’s consultation on the Agricultural Wages Board’s future were in favour of retention.


For further information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 07768 693940

  • Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with 1.5 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.