Tuesday, 26 October 2010

Politicians criticse National Express over trade union rights

Nearly forty members of the UK parliament have so far put their names to an Early Day Motion criticising the National Express travel group for refusing to recognise trade unions in the United States.
The EDM – a type of parliamentary petition – was tabled less than a week ago by Bolton North East Labour MP David Crausby.
The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) was reporting on the battle by unions to organise British companies running school buses in the USA as far back as 2004.
Since then – according to Crausby’s motion – First Group has adopted a “freedom of association” policy but National Express refuses to act.
The EDM concludes by calling on the UK government to refuse public contracts or subsidies to companies that refuse to recognise trade unions abroad.
Thirty-one Labour, three Liberal Democrat, and one Conservative MP have signed the EDM.
Read the full text of the motion and see which MPs have signed it.
It is excellent that so many Labour MPs are supporting trade union rights – but why didn’t they implement these changes when they were running the country.
If you live in the UK send a short note to your MP asking them to sign Early Day Motion 873. You can do it quickly and for free from http://www.writetothem.com/ .
British unions should organise solidarity protests – not just because its right, but because it builds up a bank of solidarity with American unions which will undoubtedly be useful the other way in the future.

1 comment:

  1. Spot on about Labour MPs who should have supported these things when they had the chance. A bit like all those MPs who should have backed John McDonnell's minor errors bill on union ballots.

    I note the motion you are writing about has been signed by good old Peter Bottomley - one of the last Tory trade unionists - he was my MP in Eltham where I grew up. I also notice a couple of Tories supported the minor errors bill the other day.

    Shame their position on union freedom being integral to democracy is not replicated by the "new generation" such as former Referendum Party staffer Priti Patel who recently released a press release praising the cutting of the union modernisation fund.

    It is worrying when you have both New Labour and new Tories conspiring against trade unions as some kind of enemy within.