The Trade Union Bill

01 November 2015

When evidence was taken in Parliament on the Trade Union Bill it was clear from the questions asked by certain members of the panel, and the responses from employers’ groups like the CBI, that the driving forces behind this nasty piece of legislation are dogma and corporate self-interest, which is why the Tories are trying to destroy our freedom of speech and association. We must prepare to fight, challenge or ignore bad law if it is introduced as ordinary workers have had to do to achieve the minimal rights we enjoy today; it is a fact that productivity is greater where there are recognised trade unions.

Looking ahead and, given the disgraceful actions of the government over the PCS and check off, we have to consider the impact of the Bill on the removal of check off and our ability to campaign. In the coming months we shall, via our branch secretaries, be trying to get all members onto direct debit. I shall write to you, stating clearly why we believe it is necessary to do this, along with briefings at district and company councils,other forums and articles in the Journal.

We welcome the announcement from TfL that the Night Tube is to be deferred until 2016 and see this as an opportunity to discuss and negotiate a reasonable way forward for all parties. But if, as has been suggested, the company is going to operate in bad faith by going directly to staff, that could only be interpreted as their wish to incite industrial strife and I do not believe they will be disappointed by our reaction.

Freight has real issues we are working through; our thoughts are with those taking early retirement to create jobs for others, and those forced to move for work, as highlighted by the closure of Worksop branch, and hopes of a brighter secure future.

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