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From The Socialist newspaper, 28 April 2010

Unison health conference

Any Unison health members looking for a way forward in resisting future attacks on the NHS following the general election will have been severely disappointed by the Unison health conference.

Adrian O'Malley, Unison health Service Group Executive (SGE) member, Yorkshire, personal capacity

The Unison leadership strategy appears to be to cross their fingers and hope for the re-election of the Labour government! The same Labour government which has marketised the NHS and privatised more services than the previous Tory government.

The bulk of the conference was so bland that the agenda was completed half a day early.

The SGE, under pressure from some branches and the Scottish Region, supported a composite motion on pay for 2011 which commits the union to a "high profile campaign in opposition to the public sector pay freeze and to begin preparatory work for potential industrial action including strike action".

We must hold them to this position. The Socialist Party fringe meeting was attended by approximately 30 delegates and visitors. The speakers were Onay Kasab, the suspended branch secretary from Greenwich Unison who gave a report of the scandalous way his branch has been stopped from functioning by the regional bureaucrats.

Roger Bannister, who is standing for Unison general secretary in the forthcoming election, also spoke.

Both speakers were a sharp contrast to the lack of optimism and fighting spirit shown at the conference and explained the pressing need to transform Unison into a fighting and democratic union.

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In The Socialist 28 April 2010:

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