The Trade union certification officer found that Tony Staunton, a member of the Unison union’s south west regional council for more than a decade, was “unreasonably excluded” from being a candidate in the 2007 national executive elections.
In 2006 Tony let it be known that he intended to stand. He would have been the left candidate against Steve Warwick, currently chair of Unison’s Labour Link.
But in the autumn of 2006 Tony was subject to a Unison internal investigation, which led to him being suspended from his union positions, and then to his nomination for the national executive being rejected.
It was not possible for another left candidate to emerge in time to stand. Unfortunately the certification officer did not decide to order Unison to re-run the election, as Tony has subsequently been expelled from the union.
A Unison member in Plymouth, who asked not to be named, told Socialist Worker, “Tony remains a much respected figure among members of our branch.
“He is also the assistant secretary of the local trade union council.
“The certification officer has ruled that Tony was illegally kept out of an election he could have won.”
Tony Staunton told Socialist Worker, “These judgements make the process of my expulsion unsafe.
“I want nothing less than reinstatement and Steve Warwick should now do the honourable thing, and resign his seat. We should have a new election that sticks to the letter of the law.”
The full judgements will shortly be available at » www.certoffice.org