For a Government obsessed with the ‘D’ word, their proposed changes to unions by way of the Trade Union Bill will cause unions to have to dig very deep to meet the anticipated additional costs of the red-tape they are required to comply with.
The Government’s own BIS impact assessment identifies that the changes will immediately cost UK unions over £11 million and a further £26 million over 5 years. Yes, tens of millions of pounds will be incurred by unions in complying with the additional red-tape involved.
Of those costs, the Certification Office (the statutory body overseeing unions) will increase its operating costs from the current £850,000 per year to nearly £2 million per year. These costs will be paid for by the unions.
If deregulation is a Good Thing – and we certainly hear that from Ministers often enough – why on earth is all this additional Red Tape being required? It is hard to avoid the conclusion that it’s a thinly-veiled attack on the Unions. Few countries in the West regulate and control their Unions to the extent we do here. Is it really necessary to add to that burden?
David Sorensen – Partner