Labour forced an emergency vote in Parliament on the sacking of P&O workers demanding the company reinstate the workforce and the Conservatives outlaw fire and rehire.
Rochdale MP, Tony Lloyd, said, “Labour will fight every step of the way for the jobs and livelihoods of these loyal workers.
“This scandalous action must be a line in the sand. If P&O ferries can get away with this, it will give the green light to other exploitative employers.
“It is the cruel consequence of the Tory assault on workers rights.
“No more excuses, Tory MPs must join with Labour and vote to ban cruel fire and rehire for good. They must decide which side they are on – loyal workers in Britain or billionaires riding roughshod over rights.”
The mass sackings without notice have caused outrage nationwide, amid reports suggested security firms with balaclavas and handcuffs were used to take sacked British workers off the vessels.
The Conservative Government were made aware of the sackings before it was announced, and of the plan to use exploitative fire and rehire.
Labour forced a vote demanding the Tories outlaw fire and rehire, strengthen workers’ rights and take tough action to force the company to think again.
Labour called on the government to:
- Outlaw fire and rehire and bring forward an urgent bill to strengthen workers rights.
- Suspend the contracts of DP World – the owner of P&O Ferries – until this matter is resolved
- Remove DP World from the UK Government’s Transport Advisory Group where they were appointed by the now Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, “to provide knowledge, experience and strategic expertise” on trade negotiations.
Notes to editors:
- Labour Opposition Day Debate Motion, Monday 21st March:
- That this House condemns the decision of P&O Ferries to fire 800 staff without notice and demands their immediate reinstatement; notes that DP World, the owner of P&O Ferries, received millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money during the coronavirus pandemic; calls on the Government to suspend the contracts and licences of DP World and remove them from the Government’s Transport Advisory Group; and further calls on the Government to bring forward a Bill urgently to outlaw fire and rehire and strengthen workers’ rights.
- DP World to offer technical and strategy expertise in UK Government’s Transport Advisory Group: https://www.dpworld.com/london-gateway/news/latest-news/dp-world-to-offer-technical-and-strategic-expertise
- Ministers ‘told in advance about P&O mass sackings’: https://www.theguardian.com/business/2022/mar/19/ministers-told-in-advance-about-po-mass-sackings