Bolton’s biggest trade union branch says it will be “watching closely” to make sure Labour’s workers rights pledges are not “watered down.”

This comes after Labour leader Keir Starmer and deputy leader Angela Raynor held talks with union leaders to discuss their parties “new deal” on rights in the workplace.

The talks including plans to crackdown on zero hours contracts and the “fire and rehire” culture in some sectors, which has been welcomed by Bolton campaigners.

Bolton Unison chair Phil Chanin said: “After fourteen years of the Conservatives and the disaster of austerity, people have had enough and feel that a general election can’t come fast enough.

“If the opinion polls are right, people are looking to Labour to form the next government.

The Bolton News: Bolton Unison members marching in LondonBolton Unison members marching in London (Image: Public)

“We want that Labour government to represent the interests of working people and their families.

“We want a Labour government that will work constructively with trade unions to resolve disputes rather than simply criticise unions and undermine them.

“I was pleased to see Labour’s commitment to the New Deal in order to boost workers’ rights.

“As trade unions we will be watching closely with the expectation that Labour delivers on the New Deal without delay and without it being watered down.”

The talks were held over the past week after leading trade unionists raised concerns that Labour was policies like these may not have been fully implemented if Labour wins the next election.

But the Labour and trade union leaderships have now released a joint statement saying they intend to work together on these issues.

It said: “Together we have reiterated Labour’s full commitment to the New Deal for Working People as agreed in July”.

“We will continue to work together at pace on how a Labour Government would implement it in legislation.”

This has been welcomed by the national leaderships of trade unions across the UK.

Unite union general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Labour have recommitted to the New Deal and it’s no longer a watered down ‘unrecognisable’ deal.”

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She added: “We’ve had a really good meeting we’ve got to a good position where that was recommitted to.

“It was a red line meeting, but I think we’ve got there.

“I think we’ve been listened to and the workers’ voice heard.”

Labour defended its plan last Sunday after a report from the Policy Exchange think tank that said that party’s fair pay agreements could cost taxpayers £4.2billion a year.

The report claimed that these policies would damage growth and fuel inflation.

A Labour Party spokesperson said those claims were “based on fiction.”