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MPs outline legal principles for the rail industry's Minimum Services Levels laws

THE Commons transport select committee has challenged the government to ensure that forthcoming regulations applying the Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Act to the rail industry meet a series of legal tests.

These include a requirement that a minimum service level for strike days should be at least as good as typically provided on previous strike days.

Safety on the rail network for staff and the public must be the “primary consideration” and greater responsibilities placed on those forced to work on strike days should be reflected in pay and conditions, the committee said.

Committee chairman Iain Stewart said that the nine tests for the government had been proposed in the absence of any plans for the panel of MPs to scrutinise the legislation.

Aslef general secretary Mick Whelan said: “Whilst the indenture of British workers is morally wrong, we welcome some interest on what is currently unsafe and unworkable.

“There is no way, organisationally, that we can comply with the steps in the BEIS and DfT consultation papers but, of course, that is the purpose – to take away the voice of British workers.”

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