Up to 150 members of the UNISON public sector workers' union met in Manchester last weekend to launch UNISON United Left. The organisation brings together all those on the left within the union, and represents a significant step forward. There were speakers from Sefton, where union members have won a victory in a fight over care home closures, and from the Glasgow medical secretaries' strike.
There was also a positive discussion about the war, and the meeting agreed to support the Stop the War Coalition and build for the 18 November national demonstration. 'It was a positive step forward,' says John McLoughlin, chair of the Tower Hamlets council branch of the union. 'There was a real attempt made to reflect all the currents of opinion on the left within the union.'