HM Opposition Day: P&O Ferries and Employment Rights

I voted on an Opposition Day motion on P&O Ferries and Employment Rights which was debated on On Monday 23 March 2022. The motion was:

“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.”

After years of loyalty, the losses now faced by P&O are profound. P&O took this action as they felt able to exploit weak employment law in the UK. On 22 October 2021, I supported a Private Members Bill to end fire and re-hire practice, and it was run out of time by the Government. The Government must prioritise the livelihoods of 800 workers.

I voted in support of the motion, which was passed, Ayes:211 and Noes:0. It is shocking that the Government abstained on a vote to rectify such a glaring violation of worker’s rights.