David Cameron orders inquiry into trade union tactics

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Review condemned as ‘a Tory election stunt’ by Unite union, while coalition tensions emerge over remit

David Cameron has ordered an inquiry into the tactics of the trade unions in the wake of the bitter industrial dispute which almost led to the closure of the Grangemouth oil refinery in Scotland.

Downing Street said the wide-ranging review, headed by Bruce Carr QC, would investigate allegations of the use of “leverage tactics” by the unions as well as the impact of such disputes on the critical national infrastructure.

However, in a sign of renewed coalition tensions, the Liberal Democrat business secretary Vince Cable made clear he had only agreed to the inquiry on the basis that it would also examine the practices of employers.

The review follows claims that Unite sought to intimidate executives from Ineos, the refinery’s owners, including sending demonstrators to protest outside their homes and at premises associated with Ineos chairman, Jim Ratcliffe.

A Unite spokesman said: “This review is a sorry attempt by the coalition to divert attention from the cost of living crisis. Vince Cable may not have noticed but the Grangemouth dispute has been settled. This review is nothing more than a Tory election stunt which no trade unionist will collaborate with.”

[Glad to see that Capitalists will be investigated re: their affect on critical national infrastructure.]

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