UK: Trade union calls for reform of the ‘trigger mechanism’ for requesting works councils

New rules need to be introduced to encourage the creation of works councils, says the Trades Union Congress (TUC).

On 17 July 2014, the TUC published a paper called Democracy in the Workplace: Strengthening Information and Consultation. In it the organisation called for a change to the ‘trigger mechanism’ rule requiring 10% of employees to request information and consultation (PDF 287 KB).

The paper argues that this will strengthen the Information and Consultation of Employees (ICE) Regulations. It says the trigger mechanism should be replaced, and information and consultation procedures must be available in law if a minimum of five employees request them, or if they are requested by a trade union.

The paper also says the introduction of the ICE Regulations did not have the anticipated effect on employer–employee consultation as they are not widely used or understood.

It calls for the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS), the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) and TUC to work together to produce a basic works council constitution.

The research also draws on examples of practice in France, Germany and Sweden to argue the benefits of boosting workplace democracy.

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