Members of UCATT have voted by 85.5 per cent to merge with Britain’s largest union, Unite.
The landmark move sees UCATT and Unite’s construction membership combining to form one union for the construction industry. Heralding the move, both unions said their combined resources and expertise would zero in on ending bogus self-employment and stopping firms indulging in a race to the bottom by undercutting pay, terms and conditions.
With major infrastructure projects either coming on stream or in the pipeline, the unions said the move would also give construction workers a powerful voice in pressing for a joined up industrial strategy, securing good quality jobs and dramatically boosting the number of proper apprenticeships.
Over the coming weeks Unite and UCATT will be finalising details ahead of UCATT’s formal transfer to Unite on 1 January 2017.
Unite general secretary, Len McCluskey, said: “I look forward to working with our new colleagues and welcoming UCATT members into the Unite family. Together we will be strong progressive voice for Britain’s construction workers and their industry.”
UCATT acting general secretary, Brian Rye, said: “Employers are going to have to get used to dealing with one voice and one union. They need to understand that shoddy and underhand practices including; dismissing workers without warning, exploiting workers by paying them via agencies or umbrella companies and ignoring key safety laws will not be tolerated and will be exposed.”