Brendan Barber’s secret talks with Tory ministers at their conference in Manchester sent out a danger signal.
The TUC leader showed that he is willing to go behind the backs of millions of trade union members to look for a compromise with this government of slashers.
Barber should be out fighting for the biggest possible yes vote in all the ballots—and making sure the mass strikes on 30 November hit the Tories hard.
Instead, the TUC leader was reportedly looking for “assurances” that the Tories were not about to dismantle public sector pension schemes.
But it is quite obvious to millions that this exactly what the Tories are planning.
That’s why three million public sector workers are gearing up to strike on 30 November.
Even reluctant trade union leaders have been forced to call action. They must not now be allowed to waver.
As 30 November gets closer, the government will put immense pressure on the union bureaucracy to do a deal and call off the strikes.
But this just underlines how the prospect of united action by millions of workers has got the Tories worried.
It’s time they felt the power of our side. Mass strikes can hurt them and can win. And if the 30 November strikes are successful, they can open the way for even more powerful action to stop the Tories once and for all.