Employment Law Bulletin November 2015


Back to the Future with the Trade Union Bill?

For most employers in the private sector, trade unions and industrial action are not a major concern. However the Government has decided to prioritise a significant tightening up of industrial action law designed to make calling a strike harder than it has ever been. The Trade Union Bill is likely to come into force next year. It builds on the changes made by the Conservative Governments of 1979 – 1997 by requiring all strike ballots to have a turn-out of at least 50 per cent and – in key services such as health education and transport – requiring the ‘yes’ vote to amount to at least 40 per cent of those entitled to vote. This presents a serious challenge for trade unions as strike ballots have to be conducted entirely by post – which tends to lead to a low turn out.