Monday, May 21, 2007

PCS Conference applauds McDonnell

As I have been too busy to blog properly today I’ll cheat and post a story from the website of our sister union PCS. UNISON is seeking a closer relationship with PCS.
The Thursday of last week’s PCS Conference ended with a powerful speech by John McDonnell MP, chair of the PCS parliamentary group. Speaking the day after learning he had not secured enough nominations to challenge Gordon Brown for the Labour leadership, he received a spontaneous standing ovation before he even began.
John thanked delegates for the welcome and noted wryly: “It’s been rough old week in Westminster.”He added: “I’m disappointed, but not for myself. I’m disappointed for all Labour party members across the country. They are not going to get a voice or a say in the future direction of a Labour government.”
John thanked PCS for its solidarity, saying: “I’m really grateful for you standing shoulder to shoulder with me.”
He went on to outline the threat Gordon Brown poses to members’ terms and conditions, and public services in general, with increased privatisation and real terms pay cuts.Other unions should come on board and show solidarity with PCS, he said, and the TUC should also show a ‘more robust interpretation of solidarity’.
“We want them to lead, we want them to co-ordinate, to be at the forefront alongside us and brining others along.”
He hailed the Make Your Vote Count campaign as ‘tremendously effective’. “It put us right in the faces of those politicians making the decisions”, he said. “There could be a general election in the next two years and votes of PCS members and their families are enough to change an election.”
Closing, he promised to continue to wholeheartedly support PCS both in parliament and workplaces. “In PCS I see a membership determined. I see anger building and we can turn that into solidarity and action. Whether it’s in parliament or on the picket lines I’ll be there with you.”
It is - of course - a crying shame that PCS are not affiliated to the Labour Party - but not as much of a shame as it will be if UNISON joins UNITE in pointlessly nominating Gordon "pay cut" Brown....

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