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From The Socialist newspaper, 18 June 2014

Trades councils conference shows that workers won't wait for TUC

Kevin Parslow, Waltham Forest Trades Council delegate

Trades councils - the local arms of the TUC - held their conference in Cardiff on 14/15 June. This year, there was a pleasant sting in its tail!

The very last motion debated was on political representation for the working class, proposed by Swansea Trades Council. It noted that the "lack of a political voice representing the needs and interests of trade union members is a serious concern for the entire trade union movement".

It then called on conference to encourage "trades councils to initiate discussions on how best to secure the kind of political representatives working class people need, considering all options."

Socialist Party members Ronnie Job from Swansea and Katrine Williams from Cardiff TC moved and seconded the motion, explaining how both locally and nationally, Labour Party representatives were divorced from the real needs of working class people.

There was opposition, with some delegates urging conference to 'wait' and be patient, support Unite's political strategy and other arguments against the motion that have been heard many times before.

But the conference decided, by 34 votes to 31, with 4 abstentions, to support the motion. The announcement was received with spontaneous applause!

No doubt the TUC leadership will not be best pleased with this resolution nor with the motion passed earlier in the conference which agreed "to restate in the 2014-15 programme of work that the TUC should facilitate a programme of co-ordinated industrial action involving unions and local TUCs, up to and including strikes".

These decisions show that the grassroots of the trade union movement are not prepared to sit and wait for the TUC to act but are urging action and a class-based political stance.

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The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

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In The Socialist 18 June 2014:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Strike back for a living wage

Report shows huge support for taxing rich

Survey shows potential for new mass workers' party

Them & Us

Kshama Sawant to speak at Socialism 2014


International socialist news and analysis

Iraq: Oil war's bloody legacy

Brazil: Upsurge in struggles of workers and homeless


Socialist Party workplace news

How should the RMT maintain Bob Crow's tradition?

Unison local government members want action on pay

Bakers call for 10 minimum wage

Escalation of FBU dispute begins

Lambeth College indefinite strike

Safety Glass workers strike for a real pay rise

Trades council conference: workers won't wait for TUC

Workplace news in brief

Come to the NSSN conference on 5 July


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition campaign reports

Rhydyfelin library saved

Nottinghamshire fire cuts - "pushed to breaking point"

Orgreave 30th anniversary - solidarity and celebration

Birmingham: new Socialist Party branch

Socialist Party Summer Camp 2014


Readers' comments and reviews

"Self-employed" and exploited

Book review: The man who loved dogs

Letters to the Socialist


 

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triangleClass collaboration and worker militancy in World War Two Britain

triangleThings will never be the same again

Union:

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