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Contractors: Employment Practice

Volume 635: debated on Thursday 25 January 2018

9. To ask the right hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington, representing the House of Commons Commission, what steps the Commission is taking to ensure the highest standards of employment practice from contractors working on the Palace of Westminster renewal and maintenance projects. [R] (903533)

The House service’s contract requirements and terms and conditions make provisions for contractors to provide adequate working conditions for employees. The provisions include health and safety, security, training, remuneration and payment of at least the London living wage to employees if working on the parliamentary estate. The working conditions provided by the contractors must be compliant with relevant legislation and ensure appropriate welfare and maintenance of stable and skilled workforces to ensure successful delivery of our contracts.

I refer to my entry in the Register of Members’ Financial Interests and thank the right hon. Gentleman for that answer.

Companies such as McAlpine, which is up to its neck in blacklisting, have contracts on the parliamentary site. Since the best form of protection for workers is membership of a strong trade union, will the Commission consider giving named officials of the relevant trade unions security access so they can come in and check to make sure blacklisting is not taking place on these premises?

I thank the hon. Gentleman for advance notice of the supplementary question. I am afraid that the current position is that passes can be issued, for instance by Members, only for a specific purpose in supporting that Member. However, the hon. Gentleman has made a specific request and I undertake to secure a written response to it for him.