Unions warn QinetiQ bid to de-recognise them sets dangerous precedent for UK

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Unions at QinetiQ have stepped up their campaign against derecognition with a meeting with MPs at the Commons.

The privatised company providing technical support to the Ministry of Defence told the unions on February 21st that they would no longer be recognised for collective bargaining from March 31st.

Parmjit Dhanda, Prospect Parliamentary and Campaigns Officer, told UnionNews: “It was an excellent meeting between the trade unions and MPs.”

Union representatives included Prospect deputy general secretary Mike Clancy and officials from GMB, PCS and Unite.

The MPs included the chair and secretary of the Trade Union Group of MPs, Tony Lloyd and Frank Doran, as well as former Armed Forces Minister John Spellar, Jim Sheridan, Alison Seabeck and many others.

Mr Dhanda said: “It was good to hear the level of concern from MPs about what is happening in QinetiQ.

“It sets a very dangerous precedent and one that is not good for UK PLC. Unions work closely with employers to achieve better communication and collective agreements over pay and conditions and this has benefitted productivity.

“We will be working closely with MPs from any party that may wish to come forward and turn up the heat on this campaign in the coming weeks.”

The unions say QinetiQ hired a City public relations firm to assist in its union-busting campaign.

They revealed that Maitland, which employs consultants who previously worked for David Cameron and various Conservative think-tanks, helped develop its alternative ‘Employee Engagement Group’ to replace the role of trade unions.

The unions have accused the company of misleading the workforce into believing there was genuine consultation on union recognition, when in fact it had already hired consultants to develop detailed plans to replace the trade unions with a non-union forum that will not be allowed to negotiate with the company.


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