MP supports Bill to limit union strike action
Arundel & South Downs MP Nick Herbert voted in the Commons today (Tuesday 24 January) for measures to limit unreasonable industrial action on critical national services.
The MP was one of over 100 Conservative backbenchers to support the Industrial Action (Protection of Critical National Services) Bill proposed by Conservative MP Chris Philp.
The Bill proposed to regulate industrial action by those providing certain critical national services, including railways, bus operators, the National Health Service, fire and ambulance services. It required that those taking industrial action should demonstrate that the matter in dispute is proportionate and reasonable.
But MPs declined to allow the Bill to be introduced by 206 votes to 127 after Labour and SNP MPs turned out in force to oppose it.
Nick Herbert said: “It is very disappointing that opposition MPs voted against the Bill, but a large number of Conservative MPs backed the measure, which sends a very clear signal to the Government that we are strongly supportive of new measures to deal with unreasonable industrial action of the kind we have seen affecting Southern Rail.
“I hope that Ministers will consider the case for this carefully. There are a disproportionately high number of strikes on the railways, and a few hundred people have been able to cause total chaos on Southern for months on utterly spurious grounds."
1. Hansard report of the debate: http://tinyurl.com/h8fx2sh.
2. List of everything that Nick Herbert has been doing on the Southern rail issue for the last two years: http://tinyurl.com/jbnjq6j.