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From The Socialist newspaper, 14 December 2011

Building bosses and their blacklist

For years, many builders suspected that contractors operated a 'blacklist' of troublemakers to ensure they did not end up with any union activists on their sites. Most people thought that if this existed, it was a word of mouth network between sub-contractors.

However, last year the Information Commissioner's Office raided the offices of Consulting Association in the West Midlands and found an actual, handwritten blacklist with index cards on any builder suspected of being a red/troublemaker.

The list of companies who paid £3,000 a pop to check any potential applicants against this list included; Kier, Macalpine. Balfour Beatty, Amec, Carillion, Skanska, Taylor Woodrow, Lovell, Laing, Mowlem, Wimpey, Wilmot Dixon, Costain and 29 others, just in construction.

I discovered I was on this blacklist too, and I've never been a builder, I can't even put up a shelf! I'm guilty by mere association with some builder friends.

Given the companies that subscribed to this secret, illegal list, it is quite worrying. My entry was amateurish with a private eye's account of my movements at an anti-National Front demo and three cuttings from the Socialist newspaper, and they still managed to file me as an SWP member!

So, I'm on a blacklist because I knew some builders and am a socialist. Where does it end? With you?

Dan Gillman

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In The Socialist 14 December 2011:


Socialist Party feature

Tories speak for the rich - not for us


Socialist Party news and analysis

Hands off our NHS!

Unacceptable! Draconian sentences for Dundee 'Facebook riot' teenagers

Striking to defend pensions

No progress at climate conference

Them & Us

Why I joined the Socialist Party


Socialist Party editorial

Stand up to the Con-Dem government


Socialist Party reviews

Inside Job: Capitalism is a failed system: support the socialist fightback

TV review: Britain's great housing scandal exposed


Socialist Party workplace news

All out now to stop the sites!

Pensioners and workers - united fight needed

Occupy London tours Canary Wharf

Action after N30

Langdon school strike

Public sector pensions - where now?

Tax workers on strike

Workplace news in brief


International socialist news and analysis

"Putin is a thief", "Putin is a thief"

Kazakhstan - 20 years of authoritarianism!


Readers' Comments

Cameron's drugs problems

Attacks on Tupe rights hit hard

Building bosses and their blacklist


 

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