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Unite accuses Skanska of union busting on Crossrail

MAJOR construction employers on Crossrail were accused of “union busting” today after blocking a trade union official from entering a site where five workers have died in the past six months.

Unite have demanded answers from Costain Skanska (CSJV) for blocking a union representative from entering Bond Street Crossrail station.

Workers are frightened about the condition of air quality after five workers have died in the past six months on the station and stopped work earlier this week in protest at the dangerous conditions.

It was agreed between Crossrail and CSJV that an independent air monitoring inquiry should be established and that Unite official Guy Langston and two health and safety reps would choose the workers who would have their air quality monitored.

Those chosen were fitted with the air monitoring kits on Tuesday, but Mr Langston received a message from CSJV employee relations head Peter Raza on Wednesday that he was banned from attending the results of the monitoring.

This has raised anger on the shop floor, and Unite have written to Mr Raza to confirm that Mr Langston has been excluded from receiving the air quality monitoring results.

Unite national officer Jerry Swain said: “Costain and Skanska have sunk to a new low.

“Excluding the union official from attending the results of the air quality monitoring testing is only going to further unsettle the workforce and make it appear there is something to hide.

“CSJV’s union busting at Bond Street risks causing further industrial relations issues especially during this time of heightened concerns.”

Both Skanska and Costain had not responded to requests for comment at the time of going to press.

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