Stephen with John Hannett, General Secretary of USDAW

Stephen with John Hannett, General Secretary of USDAW

Today, the House of Commons voted on the controversial issue to extend the hours of Sunday trading. In the Commons, Labour backed an amendment, tabled by Conservative MP David Burrowes, against the proposals. The vote was won by 317 to 288. 

During the debate Stephen spoke about his concerns that workers could be under pressure to do more hours on Sunday and those attending church may well find it impossible.

It emerged during the debate that according to the Government’s own impact assessment, the changes to Sunday Trading would have a detrimental impact on families. Conservative MP, Fiona Bruce noted that the report - which was only published at noon - stated: “…there is a potential for families to be negatively affected if members are more likely to work or work longer on Sundays.” 

Speaking after the vote, Stephen said: “I was delighted by the vote in the House of Commons this evening. The defeat is a victory for all those who support the current - and long-standing  - compromise between employees, communities, and businesses. 

"I would like to thank all those involved in the campaign to defeat the Government this evening.  The broad coalition around not extending opening hours on Sundays shows how important an issue it is to so many people. I hope that the Government has no future plans to revisit this issue."

Before the election last year the Prime Minister wrote to the Keep Sunday Special campaign staying there were "...no current plans to relax the Sunday Trading Laws”.

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AuthorStephen Timms