January 2013 Hope springs, but defences are ready…

01 June 2013

A New Year is traditionally a time of hope and optimism. There are certainly a number of things I’m hoping for.

A new government for starters. This coalition has masqueraded for too long as a decent set of chaps concerned for the common good. They’re not. The Tories areas class-oriented as they have ever been, toadying to their chums in the city and the backwoods and having no contact with, or interest in, working people. They remain intent on us paying for the recklessness of the rich, especially the bankers, who keep picking up obscenely high rewards for failure. And while the lib dems pretend to be considerate and caring, they have gone along with every thing the Tories have proposed. They want the limousines and the ministries, but not the responsibilities of power.

I hope the campaign we have led against the McNulty proposals will force the government to look again at the stupidity of simply cutting costs in the existing system, and instead rid our industry of the folly of franchising. We hear that senior managers in the currently publicly-run east coast mainline are coming under pressure to play down their successes because they are making private train operators look bad!

I hope our jobs will be secure in all our sectors and that the government will realise their withdrawal of criminal injury compensation for our grades is unfair and unreasonable. I hope that they will also stop hammering away at trade union rights. We represent decent working men and women. The fact is,this government seems to think anyone who didn’t go to public school is their enemy.

These are some of the things I hope for. But I won’t leave it there. I’ll also ensure that our union is well-organised and prepared to defend its members if attacks on us and our industry continue into 2013. We don’t just wish you a happy New Year. We prepare for it.

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