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From The Socialist newspaper, 29 June 2006

Support striking Asda workers

As we go to press, the unions have confirmed that the planned strike action at Asda has been called off, as a result of negotiations. This report was carried in the socialist before the action was called off.

HUNDREDS OF GMB members in Asda Wal-Mart's 20 depots are due to go on strike for five days between 30 June and 4 July. The workers voted by 3 to 1 to strike over the bosses' attempt to break their union organisation. Asda bosses are refusing to restore the collective bargaining rights they unilaterally withdrew in the 1990s.

Bill Mullins

There has been a long history to Asda's anti-union attitude, which has worsened since they were taken over by Wal-Mart. Asda have already broken the employment laws by attempting to bribe workers to leave the union by offering a bigger pay increase than union members. This was recommended by PR consultants Portland which is run by Tim Allen, Tony Blair's former press secretary.

In the run-up to the strike Asda were preparing to use agency labour as scabs. This must not be allowed to happen. The GMB has said that it will take legal action against any agency that sends in scabs but this will not be enough if this strike is to be won.

The Asda workers have been extremely patient and followed the advice of the GMB as they tried to win their justified demands, now it is up to the rest of the labour and trade union movement and get behind these workers.

 

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