Thursday, October 06, 2011

Osborne at the Barbers?

I have yet to write up my report of yesterday's meeting of UNISON's National Executive Council (NEC) - although as ever these days an official note from the meeting is already online (http://www.unison.org.uk/news/news_view.asp?did=7264).



In a thorough and comprehensive report on pensions one thing we weren't told, perhaps because it wasn't known, was that TUC General Secretary, Brendan Barber, had been in Manchester having talks with Government Ministers (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/union-bosss-private-talks-with-ministers-to-avert-mass-strikes-2366148.html).



It is, of course, in the job description for the role of General Secretary of the TUC to seek out unnecessarily shabby compromises, just as it is integral to the function of the post to seek to demobilise unions heading for action and to derail unity when that unity is around a fight with the Government.



The problem isn't how the Government announced their proposals (without consultation) but what their proposals are. The solution isn't a different way of "slicing" the £2.8bn Treasury raid on our pensions - it is it's elimination. It doesn't resolve a vicious attack to have it "phased in."



Thankfully, the TUC General Secretary is not in charge. Our General Secretary said yesterday that if we see any flaking away of support we just have to be strong.



Regions are being asked to feed in views about future tactics - beyond 30 November - and our bargaining position(s) and therefore, whilst the number one priority is getting a massive YES vote, branches should also feed views via Regional Service Group Committees.

Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange

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