Socialist Worker

Unite BA workers to beat Walsh

by Sadie Robinson
Issue No. 2219

Tony Woodley, joint general secretary of the Unite union, has indicated that the dispute between cabin crew at British Airways and bullying boss Willie Walsh could be spread across the company.

He said that bosses were out to smash union organisation at BA and concluded that, “This is no longer an issue for BA cabin crew alone.”

This is very welcome. Socialist Worker has long argued that the dispute at BA should be broadened.

If Walsh gets away with his assault on crew, he will turn on other BA workers.

Ultimately, he wants BA to be a union-free company.

This is a key battle for the trade union movement as a whole.

BA cabin crew have taken 22 days of strike action. They had a major impact and won backing from trade unionists across Britain.

Unfortunately Unite’s leadership has so far failed to call further action.

If cabin crew united with other BA workers they could shut down Heathrow and force Walsh to retreat.

Unite is Britain’s biggest union. It has the power to co-ordinate action across different groups of workers.

Workers should organise to make sure Woodley’s words are turned into action—fast.

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Article information

Tue 14 Sep 2010, 17:14 BST
Issue No. 2219
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