Monday, 21 June 2010

Have You Ever Been on Strike?

ConDems - an anti-union alliance?

As predicted by Plaid weeks ago, The new ConDem coalition is looking to tighten the already tightest trade union legislation in any Western democracy, in order to push through their devastating public sector cuts with greater ease. The CBI (Conservative Brothers Inc.) have called for the Government to act, in a not so subtle media build-up coordinated by their Tory friends. They are painting a picture that all of the UK is about to go on strike like in the 1970's.

As you read this blog, can I ask you two questions: -

Are you in a trade union? (If you are in the public sector, I would join fast, if I were you)
Have you ever been on strike?

I for one have always been in a union and am a senior branch officer in Unison. I am also a member of a branch that is prepared to take industrial action, if all other options have been exhausted. Contrary to what the Tories/CBI think, going on strike is extremely rare, very difficult to do within the current laws, does not make you Mr Popular with your employer and costs you serious money. So in almost all circumstances, people who take lawful strike action do so in desperation and not as part of some political game.

How ironic it is that at a time when the ConDems talk about peeling back laws that have infringed civil liberties, they are at the same time pondering new laws that will effectively make it almost impossible to take industrial action, in the very nations where the trade union movement was created in the first place.

Mr Clegg. Such draconian actions do not sound very Liberal to me.

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