The Trade Union Bill is now making its way through the House of Lords. As a result of the lobbying of peers a large number of amendments have been put forward for debate. As well as support from Labour peers a large number of Conservatives have also expressed their opposition to parts of the Bill, particularly the proposal to remove DOCAS (deduction of contributions at source – the system where employers deduct subs from wages and pass them on to unions) and the changes to the rules on political funds.
Other amendments include reducing the power of the government to limit paid time off for stewards and to allow unions to hold secure electronic voting for industrial action ballots.
At this stage no votes have been held on the amendments, and this is not expected to take place until later in March. Once the Bill has completed its passage through the Lords it will return to the Commons for MP’s to consider the amendments passed in the Lords.
You can keep up to date with all the latest news and developments on the UNISON national website as well as the TUC’s site. The Parliament website includes a page on the Bill where you can follow its progress, see what amendments have been proposed and read transcripts of all the debates.