Around 1,200 construction workers are to be told their names are believed to be on a blacklist, paving the way for a huge increase in legal action, it has been revealed.
The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) is sending letters to the workers following years of campaigning by unions to seek compensation for those on the secret list, as well as action against building firms.
The blacklist was discovered after a raid in 2009 by the ICO on the West Midlands offices of the Consulting Association, which was later closed down.
The list contained the names of more than 3,200 mainly construction workers, often targeted for being union activists or for simply raising health and safety issues on building sites.
The names of environmental activists were also discovered, as well as others, including comedian Mark Thomas.
Unions said the file was used by 44 construction companies to vet new recruits and deny work to those on the blacklist. The development of the 1,200 new names was revealed on a day of action against blacklisting, which saw protests across the country and a rally in Parliament. TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady called for a full inquiry.