Relationship between UK and EU unions more crucial than ever, says construction union federation as it flags free movement safeguards

UK and EU trade unions must continue to work together to influence policy, the European Federation of Building and Woodworkers (EFBWW) has said.

Safeguards against the exploitation of the free movement of people is at the “core” of the federation’s work in the EU, EFBWW general secretary Sam Hagglund told Unite Brexit Check.

He said UK unions will be able to work within trade union federations such as the EFBWW to retain a voice within the EU.

“Norway’s unions are extremely active in our federation. They go into directives and they participate a lot and that’s because it affects them even though they are outside of the EU. (Otherwise) they don’t have a process of having anything to say when EU regulations are being shaped,” Hagglund said.

Commenting on Unite’s proposals to implement freedom of movement safeguards that protect domestic and migrant workers, he said: “It is very important and this is at the core of what we as EFBWW are working for at the European level.

“There is now a proposal (to change EU law) that would require equal renumeration for migrant and domestic workers in host countries and that it should be not be possible to circumvent the rules and regulations by making all kinds of fake postings and triangular arrangements with different countries and temporary employment agencies.

“That seems to be very much inline with some of the safeguards Unite is proposing for the UK.”

Watch Hagglund’s interview with Unite Brexit Check here.