Union launches campaign to stop Carillion-style collapses

File photo dated 15/01/18 of a worker wearing a hi-vis jacket at a Carillion construction site in central London. The construction giant Carillion had just �29 million in cash by the time it went bust, according to its interim chief executive.  PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday January 17, 2018. The company was in talks with the Government to save it for months, Keith Cochrane said, adding that it was "regrettable" discussions to arrange short-term funding had been unsuccessful. See PA story CITY Carillion. Photo credit should read: Yui Mok/PA Wire
File photo dated 15/01/18 of a worker wearing a hi-vis jacket at a Carillion construction site in central London. The construction giant Carillion had just �29 million in cash by the time it went bust, according to its interim chief executive. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Wednesday January 17, 2018. The company was in talks with the Government to save it for months, Keith Cochrane said, adding that it was "regrettable" discussions to arrange short-term funding had been unsuccessful. See PA story CITY Carillion. Photo credit should read: Yui Mok/PA Wire

A blueprint to tackle “bandit capitalism” has been launched in a bid to avoid a repeat of the collapse of engineering giant Carillion.

Unite called for a series of measures, including better regulations, stricter rules to stop firms “embellishing” their accounts and an end to outsourcing of contracts.

The union also urged the Government to stop awarding contracts to companies in financial difficulties.

Unite said outsourcing and the way the construction industry is organised were major factors in Carillion’s demise.

Unite assistant general secretary Gail Cartmail said: “This document is designed to set out the many factors that led to Carillion’s collapse and to ensure that the bandits are chased out of UK plc.

“What is too often forgotten when company’s collapse is that thousands of workers both directly employed by the company and in their supply chain lose their jobs, through absolutely no fault of their own. The untold human misery of being dumped out of work without warning must be tackled once and for all.

“The reforms that Unite has set out provide a clear blueprint of what is needed to begin tackling the worst excesses of the financial and corporate culture which currently exists.

“With the revelations that Interserve, which has a very similar structure to Carillion, is also in severe financial difficulties, these reforms cannot be introduced a minute too soon.

“It is a damning indictment that nearly a year after Carillion’s collapse no-one has been charged with doing anything wrong, yet thousands of workers lost their jobs and millions of pounds of taxpayers’ money has been spent on clearing up the mess.

“Perhaps the most worrying factor concerning Carillion’s collapse is that the government is still acting as though it is business as normal, which is potentially exposing thousands more workers to a Carillion-style meltdown.”