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The South West TUC has described as "absurd" Liam Fox's calls to make it easier to fire workers.
The Tory MP for North Somerset has written in today's Financial Times that it was "intellectually unsustainable" that employment rights should stay untouched in the current economic climate.
Nigel Costley, regional secretary of the South West TUC, said: "At a time of rising unemployment and growing redundancies, the very idea of making it easier to sack people seems absurd.
"Economists are telling us we're suffering a crisis of confidence, so making people feel even more insecure about their jobs is hardly going to boost consumer spending.
"Instead of attacking workers' rights, Liam Fox and his government should concentrate on creating growth and jobs to get us out of this deepening recession caused by cuts that have been made too hard and to fast for the economy to cope with."
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