Unite Put Govt 'On Notice' Over Trade Union Bill

The UK's largest union has put the government "on notice", that it would defy the Trade Union Bill "using any means necessary to defend the democratic rights and freedoms of all trade unionists and the working people of our nation".

Unite issued the warning as it called on the government to "end its systematic efforts to paint trade unions and their members as the 'enemy within'".

The unions leader, Len McCluskey, said: "This is a movement that has from its inception delivered for each generation continued improvements to the working lives of millions of people. It has secured our nation's wealth and fought for the social and political progress that has made this county a place of fairness, equality and social justice. 

"But instead of recognising our role this prime minister seeks to paint the millions of trade unionists and their families at 'the enemy within', with a Tory party drunk on class prejudice intent on destroying this movement as a force in British life. 

"They seek to reduce trade unions to no more than employment advice agencies, while turning our members – who dare to act – into criminals. 

"There is though, an emerging broad and united democratic campaign against this legislation is greater than ever before - because it doesn't just attack trade unions. 

"It threatens freedom of speech. It menaces freedom of association. It insults the values which all British people cherish." 

Len McCluskey called for the government to abandon the conflict it is pursuing with the unions and instead work with the movement to modernise voting arrangements: 

"Instead of quibbling over percentages, let's use the language of democracy and modernisation and implement secure workplace balloting. End this archaic reliance on postal ballots, and turnout will never be a problem again." 


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