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Welsh government to ‘reverse decline of collective bargaining’ in public sector

THE Welsh government will legislate to “reverse the decline of collective bargaining” in the public sector, including services taken over by privateers.

Welsh First Minister and Labour leader Mark Drakeford announced the plan in the Senedd today as the latest step towards restoring workers’ rights which have been systematically eroded by the Tories in Westminster.

Workers including carers, whose jobs have been forcibly transferred to the private sector under Tory regulations, have seen wages cut and collective rights chipped away by profiteering employers.

Mr Drakeford said: “The ongoing nature of the challenges we face is well known.

“The growth of in-work poverty, false self-employment and compulsory zero-hours contracts have a corrosive effect on the health and wellbeing of too many people in Wales.

“What is more, these unfair practices serve only to deepen existing inequalities in our society, as those with the least power in the workplace are affected most.”

He said the new plans would reverse the decline in collective bargaining and mean more involvement of trade unions in the workplace.

Unison Cymru/Wales acting regional secretary Tanya Palmer said: “Mark Drakeford’s statement is exactly the kind of bold, exciting announcement you want to hear from a politician. He wants to improve the lives of low-paid workers and he’s going to do something about it.

“Thousands of carers, cleaners and many more and their families stand to benefit from better and fairer workplaces if trade unions are able to negotiate on an all-Wales basis on their behalf.”

She said Wales should not be a country where “people might be exhausted from a full week’s work yet their pay is so low they can’t afford food for their family and the bills.”

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