Socialist Worker

Union leaders and the law

Issue No. 2157

The workers who walked out unofficially at Lindsey and elsewhere have shown the power that can beat the anti‑union laws.

But many workers are angry that the union leaders have not done more to support them.

The unions say the law means they had to officially repudiate the action—but workers have pointed out that this doesn’t mean they can’t offer support in practice.

Many union members are also asking why these laws are still in place 12 years into a Labour government—one that is funded by the GMB and Unite.

Of course the national officials should be forced to support the action. But it is the rank and file that has pushed the dispute forward—and the control of the strike needs to remain with the members.

The construction national shop stewards forum needs to be reconvened urgently to help organise around the dispute.

Rather than the national agreement being torn to shreds by the construction bosses it should be made real and strengthened.

This is workers’ best defence against blacklisting. If won, it would guarantee that every site was a union site.

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