P&O Ferries – live: CEO to face MPs after Johnson said firm has ‘broken the law’

The P&O Ferries boss Peter Hebblethwaite will face MPs questions this morning, following the firm’s decision to sack 800 seafarers and replace them with cheaper agency workers.

Mr Hebblethwaite will appear before a joint hearing of the transport and business committees after MPs and unions alike questioned the legality of the dismissals, which were issued over a recorded video message without notice.

Yesterday Boris Johnson said it appeared to him that the firm had broken the law.

Speaking during prime minister’s questions, he said: “We will not sit by, because under section 194 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations Act of 1992 it looks to me as though the company concerned has broken the law.”

It emerged yesterday that P&O was able to legally sack its employees without informing the government because of a law change brought in by Chris Grayling.

While transport secretary, Mr Grayling amended legislation meant to protect workers to create an exemption where there are mass redundancies on ships registered overseas.

Meanwhile no P&O Ferries vessels are sailing between Dover and Calais.

Rival DFDS says: “Due to the disruption to P&O services currently, we are accepting tourist customers with a vehicle booking until further notice. Please bring your P&O booking details to the DFDS check in desks in Dover & Calais for travel on the next available service.”

Read on for the latest news and developments.


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