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2003 Water Service Group Conference
25 February 2003
Carried as Amended

This Water and Environment Service Group Conference notes with concern that employers such as Vertex, part of United Utilities, Cap, Gemini, Ernst &Young and Thames Water are actively considering transferring work to India.

Negotiators in such Branches are advised to seek assurances from their employers that this issue will not escalate and put more British workers on the employment scrap heap.

Conference’s concerns are:

1)the increasing use of cheap labour from developing countries where workers do not have the same pay and conditions as they do in the UK;

2)the increasing use being made of call centres in the public sector;

3)the increase in proposed outsourcing of customer call centres to developing countries;

4)the increase in proposed outsourcing of IT information to developing countries.

Conference calls on the Water and Environment Service Group Executive to:

a)Contact all branches within their remit to judge the scale of the problem;

b)Consider producing relevant literature as part of a campaign against offshoring work;

c)Encourage branches to actively oppose proposals, which would result in immediate job losses in the UK;

d)Start a campaign to ensure that where companies establish call centres in developing countries the workers are properly protected in terms of health and safety and employment rights;

e)Ensure that employers do not substitute jobs in the UK for lower paid jobs in developing countries;

f)Raise these issues with the Energy and Transport Service Groups through the Business and Environment Working Group.