Socialist Party
| Print

19 January 2018

Carillion and the construction industry

The following letter by Socialist Party member and construction worker Jimmy Tyson was published in the Liverpool Echo earlier this week:

Recent events surrounding construction giant Carillion have exposed the problem in general within the construction industry.

The media are reporting that thousands of jobs are at risk as a result of recent financial problems. But the reality is, that the majority of the men and women working on not just Carillion sites but all construction sites across the country have for years been living in fear of job insecurity.

The construction industry prefers to employ workers through bogus self employment, CIS [Construction Industry Scheme], umbrella companies and using exploitive employment agencies, all in order to exempt workers from employment law, notice period and holiday pay.

They have consistently tried to de-skill the industry with things like BESNA in order to employ unqualified electricians at a lower rate and modulisation to reduce the amount of qualified skilled workers needed on site. Also exploiting migrant workers, paying them less than their British counterparts.

Carillion refused to work with Unite the union in agreeing a national agreement when statistics show that unionised sites are safer, more productive sites.

In their drive to drive down wages what they ended up with was a load of unqualified workers and agency workers working on a week to week basis with no loyalty to a company who refuse to directly employ them; and no motivation.

This is why jobs have taken longer to complete - because of the total disrespect shown to hard working construction workers.

This isn't just a problem for Carillion, so all the other construction giants need to get their houses in order as this is the future of the industry if they don't end bogus self-employment, cooperate with trade unions and allow their sites to be fully unionised and start directly employing qualified trades men and women and paying union recognised rates of pay.

This version of this article was first posted on the Socialist Party website on 19 January 2018 and may vary slightly from the version subsequently printed in The Socialist.

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube


triangle23 Feb Lecturers strike around country in defence of pensions

triangle21 Feb Facebook sides with state repression - reinstate the Tamil Solidarity...

triangle21 Feb Bosses divided - university pension strikes can win!

triangle21 Feb How can young people and students fight the Tories?

triangle21 Feb Northern Ireland talks process paralysed

triangle21 Feb Chatsworth ward victory shows we can save our NHS

triangle20 Feb After 80 strike days Mears workers achieve victory

More ...


triangle24 Feb Socialist Students national conference

triangle26 Feb Teesside Socialist Party: The National Question

triangle26 Feb Leeds Socialist Party: Organising tenants in the private rented sector

triangle27 Feb Cardiff West Socialist Party: The campaign for a 10 an hour minimum wage


Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777


Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0191 421 6230

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551


What we Stand For

About the Socialist Party

Our 2015 election manifesto

Joining the Socialist Party - what will it mean for you


Alphabetical listing

February 2018

January 2018