Thursday, April 07, 2005

Labour Inspectors check MoD

• Ford meets Adam Ingram

Gibraltar Government Labour inspectors made an unexpected call at the MoD yesterday the Chronicle has learned.

It is understood that the inspectors arrived yesterday morning whilst senior MoD staff were involved touring departments with the visiting Chief of Joint Operations Air Marshal Sir Glenn Torpy.

The move comes just a day after the Chief Minister briefed MPs in London in a bid to rally support for the campaign to halt the cuts and likely job losses.

Meanwhile Glyn Ford, Labour MEP for Gibraltar, met yesterday morning with Adam Ingram, Minister of State for the Armed Forces to discuss the MoD’s proposal to contractorise 600 jobs in Gibraltar.

Having tabled three questions to the European Commission on MoD plans, Mr Ford said he was keen to ask the Minister for his opinion on these issues.

With regards to the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Directive, known as TUPE, Mr Ingram agreed that it would apply in this case.

"On the issue of cross-frontier workers, Mr Ingram said the contractor would have to make contingency plans to take into account the possibility of a border closure. On the failure of proper consultation with the workforce, the Minister said he would investigate the matter,” said Mr Ford who was also assured by the Minister that there was no barrier to the workforce, on its own or in partnership with others, presenting an in-house bid for the work in question despite claims to the contrary.

Mr Ford said “I am obviously waiting for the reply from the European Commission but I am very pleased that the Minister has taken up this issue seriously and that he confirmed that an in-house bid was possible”.

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