Unison is one of the Labour party’s strongest supporters within the union movement and has donated over £1.75m to the Labour party since January 2009. The reason that the Labour-supporting faction within Unison is so irate is that Neath Port Talbot council has unilaterally decided to “dismiss over 7,000 employees and re-employ them on lower terms, conditions and wages as well as out sourcing 750 to 1,000 job with further cuts to come later.”
The motion is scathing in its criticism of the Labour-run council’s actions, saying:
“This forum deplores such bullying tactics and calls on al Labour councillors, Labour members of Parliament, Welsh Labour AMs and Labour SMPs to condemn the action of Neath Prot Talbot CBC.”
Plaid Cymru’s Deputy Leader of the Opposition on Neath Port Talbot Council Alun Llewelyn condemned the way that the Labour council has acted:
“Because of the way that the Labour Party and Gordon Brown acted over the last 13 years there is a massive national debt and councils, like everyone else, are going to have to make cuts. I accept that difficult decisions are going to have to be made. But we should work together to make these decisions with politicians, unions and management cooperating to provide the best possible service and to keep redundancies down to a bare minimum.
“The Labour group in the council seems to take pride in the way they are taking on the Union. When the new budget first came to council Plaid proposed that all possible efforts be made to avoid compulsory redundancies. This was refused by the Labour group. Since then they have publicly threatened all staff with dismissal and reemployment on poorer terms and condition.
“I call on the council to come to its senses now and negotiate properly with the union. If they don’t there are serious risks that council staff morale will fall even further and that relations between staff and the council will be destroyed, that would be a disaster for the people of Neath Port Talbot.”
Here is the motion in full:
Friday 2nd July the following motion was passed by the National Labour Link Forum:
This Forum notes the situation at Neath Port Talbot County BC which is a Labour controlled council. As a result of the budget crisis, the Council has served notice on 25th June and received on the 28th June 2010 to UNISON and other Trade Unions that they intend unilaterally to dismiss over 7,000 employees and re-employ them on lower terms, conditions and wages as well as out sourcing 750 to 1,000 job with further cuts to come later.
This forum deplores such bullying tactics and calls on al Labour councillors, Labour members of Parliament, Welsh Labour AMs and Labour SMPs to condemn the action of Neath Prot Talbot CBC.
Further this Forum calls on all Labour councillors, particularly those who are also UNISON members to oppose similar future moves in all local authorities.
Please lobby your AMs MPs and councillors to deplore this terrible action.