Inquiry to consider new laws against union 'bullying'

Bruce Carr QC's inquiry will examine whether current laws are sufficient to prevent what Government sources described as "inappropriate or intimidatory actions" by trade unions.

The Government-ordered review will examine several areas of industrial disputes, including:

  • Underlying causes of industrial relations difficulties in affected industries
  • Employer practices, including worker "blacklisting"
  • Whether police are empowered to respond to complaints
  • Potential impact on the UK's critical national infrastructure
  • Consequences for investor confidence in key sectors

Mr Carr, a leading industrial relations lawyer, will head a three-strong panel alongside a representative from both the employers and the unions.

Upon formation, it has six months to gather evidence and file a joint report on recommendations to Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude and Business Secretary Vince Cable.

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Union 'bullying tactics' probed

Prime Minister David Cameron has ordered a wide-ranging inquiry into industrial disputes, including alleged intimidation tactics of trade unions, following the bitter row that almost led to the closure of the Grangemouth oil refinery in Scotland.