Under their proposals, a union ballot for action would require at least a 50% turnout of all the workforce. For unions in health, education, fire and transport an even tougher threshold would apply — a 40% ‘yes’ vote among all members entitled to vote, as well as a majority of all votes. There would also be more attacks on union subscriptions, on facility time for union reps to carry out their duties, and on payments to political parties.
All this from the party that has implemented the most right wing policies based on votes from less than 25% of registered voters at the 2010 general election. The tories also fought tooth and nail against reform of the voting system, and introduced Police Commissioners on a 13% turnout of eligible voters.
To nurses, teachers, fire and transport workers, and indeed all staff in these public services, I say wake up and make sure you vote Labour. Otherwise your basic trade union rights will disappear.
And to everyone else I say wake up as well. To adapt a well known quote: “First they came for trade unionists … then they came for me.” Everyones’ liberty will be at risk if these neo-fascist Tories get back into power.
Nigel de Gruchy
Orpington Labour Candidate