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22 June 2012
If we cannot guarantee this, we will have a free for all of social dumping across Europe, to the benefit of none
GMB commented on the speech by Ed Miliband on migration.
Kamaljeet Jandu, national officer for Equality, said:
"If there is to be a single market for labour in the EU then there has to be common employment laws across the EU.
Economic freedoms cannot have priority over fundamental social rights and social progress, and in the case of conflict, social rights should take precedence.
All workers across Europe need to be reassured that they have equal treatment in the job market, and that means equal access, with jobs being widely and transparently advertised and filled fairly, where pay, conditions and respect for collective bargaining are not undermined at other workers' expense. If we cannot guarantee this, we will have a free for all of social dumping across Europe, to the benefit of none.
The current Beecroft proposals and the plans to curb the remit of the Gangmaster's licencing authority move us in the opposite direction and we welcome Labour's commitment to campaign against both.
The EU needs to respond with strong and effective revision of the Posting of workers legislation to stop exploitation and undercutting, and ensures equal treatment. This will mean going beyond the current proposals on enforcement of posting of workers Directive currently on the table.
Agencies and contractors should not be able to favour foreign workers in recruitment, or make stipulations for foreign language requirements on contracts where this is not the language of the country where the work or service is being carried out. There has to be a level playing field.
Consideration should be given to licencing employment agencies, and strengthening UK legislation on Temporary agencies to ensure equal treatment principles and raising fines for non- compliance to dissuasive levels.
Effective and practical measures also need to be established at EU level for pursuing companies, agencies and subcontractors cross border who breach employment rights and conditions when they flee such as Damar in the Uskmouth case leaving wages unpaid."