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30 March 2011

Vote for a fighting democratic Unison leadership

Unison members, along with all other workers in both public and private sectors, are facing unprecedented attacks from the Con-Dem government, local councils and employers.

The elections for Unison's National Executive Council run from 11 April to 13 May, when members will have a chance to vote for candidates pledged to turn Unison into a fighting, democratic union.

Unison needs a strategy to defeat all cuts, whoever proposes them.

Labour councils who pass on Tory cuts by slashing jobs and services are part of the problem, not the answer.

Council workers being sacked by Labour councils will be horrified that Unison continues to pump 3 million a year into the Labour Party on their behalf.

Members in areas across the UK have shown a willingness to fight the attacks but each branch is being left to fight alone; there is no linking of the disputes.

The majority of Unison's current national executive have either no intention of leading a fightback or don't know how to develop a winnable strategy and organise. We need a big influx of new blood - activists with a proven track record of defending members and organising to win.

All local government members could have voted for: Glenn Kelly in the local government male seat.

But Glenn is one of the four Socialist Party members being witch-hunted for challenging the Unison leadership.

He has been banned from standing in the NEC elections. This is another indication of the undemocratic methods of the leadership, despite the four winning an Employment Tribunal against the witchhunt.

Now the union leadership will spend thousands of pounds taking the case to an Employment Appeals Tribunal.

Glenn's ban from standing will be challenged. But if Glenn is not on the ballot paper we call on Unison members to vote for Paul Couchman.

All health care members can vote for: Len Hockey health care service group (SG) male seat, John Malcolm health care SG general seat.

All members can vote for: April Ashley black members female seat, Hugo Pierre black members male seat, Kieran Grogan national young members seat.

The following candidates are standing for regional seats: Jean Thorpe East Midlands female seat, Hannah Walter Northern female seat, Roger Bannister North West male seat, Mike Forster Yorkshire and Humberside general seat, Angie Waller Yorkshire and Humberside female seat, Victoria Perrin Yorkshire and Humberside reserved seat.

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