Letter to the Business Secretary - Withdrawal of the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill

The IoD, alongside a dozen other organisations including the TUC and CIPD, have written to Business Secretary Grant Shapps calling for the withdrawal of the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill. This Bill aims to remove all EU-derived law from the statute book.

The full letter is below.

Dear Mr Shapps

Withdrawal of the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill  

We are writing to urge you to withdraw the Retained EU Law (Revocation and Reform) Bill introduced to Parliament in the name of your predecessor as Secretary of State.

As representatives of trade unions, employers, lawyers, environmental groups and civic society we are concerned that if passed into law, it could cause significant confusion and disruption for businesses, working people and those seeking to protect the environment.

The Bill would automatically sweep away thousands of pieces of legislation and established legal principles.

Even if legislation is retained – and ministers have yet to set out their vision of future workplace, environmental and consumer regulation – decades-worth of case law would be upended. This would make the interpretation of the law highly uncertain and likely lead to greater reliance on the already over-stretched courts and tribunal system.

It also risks putting the UK in breach of the Trade and Co-operation Agreement with the EU, bringing with it the prospect of additional tariffs hurting UK exporters and those who work for them.

It is unclear how the UK’s governments and parliaments will cope with the vast amount of legislation this will involve being rushed through before the end of next year. There is a huge risk of poor or potentially detrimental law entering the statute book.

Making these changes will prove costly and bureaucratic and would undermine the certainty and stability workers and businesses need if the economy is to prosper.

We urge you to reconsider this legislation.

Yours sincerely

Frances O’Grady

General Secretary, TUC

Roger Barker

Director of Policy and Governance, IoD

Shaun Spiers

Chair, Greener UK

Peter Cheese

Chief executive, CIPD

Paul McFarlane

Chair, Employment Lawyers Association

Rosalind Stevens

Project manager, Civil Society Alliance

Richard Benwell

Chief executive, Wildlife and Countryside Link

Robyn Heitzman

Policy and Research Officer, Hope for Justice

Ben Lloyd

Head of Policy, Wales Council for Voluntary Action

Charles Whitmore

Coordinator, Wales Civil Society Forum

Victoria Marks

Director, Anti Trafficking and Labour Exploitation Unit (ATLEU)

Phoebe Clay and Emma Rose

Co-directors, Unchecked UK 

Lucila Granada

Chief executive, Focus on Labour Exploitation (FLEX)

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