Published On: Mon, Sep 11th, 2017

Brexit bothering union boss DEMANDS UK 'stay in single market and play by the EU's rules'


Frances O’Grady, the General Secretary of the Trade Union Congress (TUC) claimed the Government’s attempts to secure a transitional arrangement with the bloc were “unrealistic”.

And the Union chief accused Mrs May’s team of having a “criminal lack of preparation” when it comes to delivering .

Speaking to Politico, she said: “It is clearly just unrealistic to expect that both parties could make an agreement on new terms for a transition within what we have got left — 18 months.

“It just ain’t going to happen.

“Rather than faff about it and spout off about it, it seems to us entirely sensible to say okay, for the transition it will be status quo and we will still play by the rules.

“It gives everybody time to focus on the deal that comes afterwards.”

Meanwhile the union big boss has claimed Britain must stay in the single market after Brexit to avoid catastrophe.

Speaking ahead of the TUC’s four-day conference, she said: “The clock is ticking towards what I can only call a kamikaze Brexit.

“For the final deal we want all options on the table, but we know that an option that meets our tests is staying in the single market after we leave the .”

It follows pledge to keep the UK in the single market and customs union during a lengthy transitional period.

During the 2017 snap General Election Jeremy Corbyn and his right-hand man John McDonnell repeatedly insisted remaining within the unified trade network would be a betrayal of the EU referendum vote.

But Shadow Brexit secretary Keir Starmer is believed to have announced the dramatic U-turn from the party’s former hard-line stance following scorn from trade union chiefs.

Ms O’Grady insisted the Labour party “makes up its own mind” – but claimed the decision had made Labour the “grown-ups in the room” when it came to Brexit stances.

She added: “We haven’t been shy about pointing out what is basic common sense.”



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