“ILLEGAL, immoral and reprehensible” trade union blacklisting has been condemned by Bury Council’s ruling Labour group.

A motion showing commitment to the authority’s recognised trade unions was passed at full council last week.

The motion, which was subject to a last-minute amendment following legal advice, originally called upon the council to exclude companies guilty of blacklisting workers from undertaking work on its behalf.

The wording was altered to “take such steps as are lawful” to recognise the values and savings of a unionised workplace.

Cllr Nick Parnell said: “Trade union blacklisting literally turns my stomach. We support this motion because we are a party founded by the people, for the people.”

Cllr Trevor Holt described blacklisting as “ruining the lives of men and women who are simply standing up for their rights”.

The original motion was criticised by Conservative leader Cllr Iain Gartside as “clearly illegal under competition law” and “a throwback to Labour’s 1970s closed shop regimes”.

But he confirmed his party was against blacklisting in principle, calling it “abhorrent and illegal”.

Conservative Cllr Roy Walker said the original motion was “retrograde” and would take the council back to the “difficult days” of the 1970s.

The motion was carried with abstention from all Conservative councillors, and has been referred to the Department for Resources and Regulation.