Ban blacklisting

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The Procurement Reform Bill is very much to be welcomed (your report, 21 November). It is high time the firms involved in this modern-day McCarthyism had some comeuppance.

Even Joe McCarthy was more open than this: his victims knew they had been accused. The Consulting Association has made thousands of victims who are unaware of it, and many allegations against them have been complete fabrications.

But Neil Findlay MSP is right: further action is needed. Even under this bill, firms contracting for the private sector would still get away with it.

The now defunct Consulting Association was itself started up by a former employee of the Economic League. The league started up nearly a hundred years ago, and built widespread membership throughout British industry and commerce.

The Anti Blacklisting Campaign, which colleagues and I set up in Westminster many years ago, had some success when, with massive poor publicity in the press and television, they were forced to close down.

It was not until 2010 that we saw legislation to statutorily prohibit blacklisting, yet as your leader points out, this despicable practice continued until found out only recently, when the Consulting Association’s office was raided.

Ian Davidson’s committee has been doing sterling work with the trade unions in showing what has been going on. Isn’t it time to stop this evil practice by severe penalties against those found guilty anywhere in the UK? People go to jail for less.

Maria Fyfe

Ascot Avenue