Socialist Worker

Unions and MPs back campaign against the blacklist

by Alan Kenny
Issue No. 2346

Around 150 people attended the Blacklist Support Group (BSG) AGM on Saturday of last week.

Dave Smith, secretary of the BSG, spoke about the successes of the campaign that has pushed the construction blacklist into the spotlight.

The group’s success was reflected by the attendance of two union general secretaries. Labour MPs John McDonnell and Michael Meacher also spoke.

Paul Kenny, general secretary of the GMB union, said, “We have seen evidence on a scale that we have never dreamt of.

“There are many layers of this onion still to unfold—right up the political ladder.”

He also acknowledged that the GMB had been slow to get involved with the campaign.

Unite general secretary, Len McCluskey, called for the introduction of legislation to make compilation and use of blacklists a criminal offence.

He said that of the 37 companies named in a Consulting Association document, 18 of them are involved in the blacklist.

A number of speakers and contributions from the floor said it was clear that a blacklist existed on the Olympic project.

They said the sacking of Frank Morris at Westbourne Park shows it’s happening on the Crossrail project.

Bill Turner, a councillor from Tower Hamlets, said that Crossrail was “giving a load of spin about the benefits to the public. But money that should be going to public services is going to Crossrail.”

Unite is launching a “leverage” campaign on the Crossrail project.

Jerry Hicks, the rank and file candidate for Unite general secretary, called for “payment by results” for Labour.

He said “You get the money after you repeal the anti-trade union laws.”

A number of local authorities have now passed motions saying that they won’t use construction companies that are implicated in the blacklist.


Support Steve Acheson

An appeal has been launched for blacklisted worker Steve Acheson, who has been out of work since being sacked from an engineering project at Fiddlers Ferry power station four and a half years ago.

Steve is set to lose his house. A campaign has been launched to raise £25,000.

Cheques made payable to: “Fiddlers Ferry Hardship Fund” should be sent c/o: Warrington Trade Union Council, 6 Red Gables, Pepper Street, Warrington WA4 4SB

 


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Thu 28 Mar 2013, 13:04 GMT
Issue No. 2346
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