The Blacklist Support Group campaigned alongside the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, the Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign and the Justice for Shrewsbury Pickets Campaign outside Anfield Stadium in Liverpool this month. Their aim was to raise awareness of the systematic blacklisting of trade union members and speak out for the victims of construction company Carillion, contracted to work on a £75 million expansion of the stadium.
Unite Legal Services is currently involved in a High Court battle with Carillion, as well as others, after evidence of decades of blacklisting came to light. The Blacklist Support Group contends that Carillion continues to practice blacklisting against construction workers, despite it being illegal to do so.
The union members present spoke of the emotional and psychological toll caused by the discrimination they, and their co-workers, suffered at the hands of the blacklisters.
The groups insist that Carillion must face disciplinary charges for contravening the human rights of 3,213 workers by cross-referencing the blacklist when deciding whether or not to employ people. They highlighted the importance of robustly defending the tradition of workers’ rights in the United Kingdom given the ongoing abuses by Carillion in their building projects overseas.
Howard Beckett, director of Unite Legal Services, said: “We are thankful for the strong show of support in Liverpool and to the multiple groups that came together to raise awareness over such despicable practice. Unite Legal Services continues to fight Carillion in the High Court for full and proper compensation for those affected by blacklisting.
“However compensation can only be one part of this struggle. Until there is complete transparency from those involved in blacklisting, distrust of these firms will continue to prevail among the public.”