Monday, November 28, 2011

It's not 99% (yet) but it's a majority

Opinion poll evidence that public opinion is three to two in favour of Wednesday's strike action (http://www.comres.co.uk/poll/569/bbc-five-live-economic-barometer-survey.htm) is certainly welcome.

A poll for the BBC shows that 61% believe we are justified to strike on Wednesday whilst 36% oppose us and 3% don't know. The same poll shows that the Government's handling of the economy is approved of by just 28%.

(For a historical comparison with the last major showdown between the trade unions and a Tory Government, in 1984 the miners had uncritical support from about 12%, with some support from another 35% - http://www.isj.org.uk/?id=640).

This level of support for our forthcoming strike action is all the more impressive since we have the positive support of just one major daily newspaper - the Mirror (http://m.mirror.co.uk/) (which also reports the possibility of sunshine on Wednesday, so even their weather forecast is sympathetic to the workers).

Supporters of the Coalition Government's attempt to turn an economic crisis into a political opportunity to reshape society in the interests of the wealthy and powerful (who are, of course, responsible for the crisis) may have overplayed their hand. To see the smooth plump faces of privilege lecturing the careworn low paid public servants may be less persuasive than Messrs Maude and Alexander had hoped.

Credit is due to our leadership - and press office - for consistent explanation of our case (and for the press adverts running today - http://www.unison.org.uk/asppresspack/pressrelease_view.asp?id=2532).

Equal credit must go to the untold thousands who have heeded the call to speak with family and friends, to use social media in our support, to write to local press and vote in online polls.

Now - on the antepenultimate day - we need to use this clear evidence of public support in our final push to consolidate the willingness of members to strike.

(Those Labour politicians who can't - yet - bring themselves to support us [http://www.edmiliband.org/] may feel that today is a day for silent reflection).

Sent using BlackBerry® from Orange

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