Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/954/25731

From The Socialist newspaper, 28 June 2017

Unison conference: confident delegates take control, give Corbyn 'rapturous' welcome

Unison conference 2016 photo Paul Mattsson, photo Paul Mattsson

Unison conference 2016 photo Paul Mattsson, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Glenn Kelly, Socialist Party industrial department

Unison's 2017 conference was the first big trade union conference after the general election. It didn't take long to see the lift in confidence the result had given.

Delegates broke out in spontaneous cheers when it was announced that Jeremy Corbyn would be addressing the end of conference.

The first debate on smashing the pay cap and for a 10 an hour minimum wage was electric, with so many Socialist Party members speaking, it started to feel that you were at a Socialist Party meeting!

Such was the mood the leadership was compelled to say it "would break the pay cap in the next 12 months." However, many delegates have heard this before and remain sceptical that, without a clear strategy, they were going to do it.

Cliff edge

In his conference speech Unison general secretary Dave Prentis tried to wrap himself in Corbyn's red flag, saying that he and the leadership had always backed him and the union "effectively wrote the Labour manifesto".

As delegate after delegate cheered Corbyn's victory that had pushed May to the cliff edge, they now demand that the union help push her over, by supporting the demo on the 1 July and preparing for strike action.

As the conference went on and delegates took control, Prentis and his supporters looked increasingly glum. Like Theresa May, they looked like the team who had won but lost.

Compare that to the upbeat mood of the 400 delegates at the Unison Action fringe meeting (the new left organisation initiated by the Socialist Party) celebrating that we had won 29 of the national executive committee seats and now were ready to organise to win the union for the members.

Socialist Party delegates played a key role at the conference and our ideas were warmly welcomed. This was reflected in the fact that we sold 238 copies of the Socialist, 20 non-party members attended our fringe meeting where 1,400 was raised for the fighting fund, and two delegates agreed to join.

The conference ended with Corbyn addressing delegates to a rapturous standing ovation. When asked by a young delegate why 16-year-olds should be denied the 10 an hour minimum wage if they were doing the same job - Labour's manifesto promises it for over-18s only - Corbyn responded: "That's a fair point, I agree, 16-year-olds don't eat any less so they should get the same."

Having addressed 2,000 delegates in the conference hall, hundreds of young people from Brighton then organised an impromptu rally outside to greet Corbyn, where he then stayed and addressed them. When he climbed into a car it had to crawl slowly along the road with supporters following him lining the streets singing "oh Jeremy Corbyn".

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 28 June 2017:


What we think

Step up the fight to kick out Tories and Blairites


Grenfell Tower

After Grenfell - fight for safe homes

Camden evacuation - residents expose risks - Blairites duck responsibility

Grenfell fire compounded by overcrowding: build more council homes now

Reports: organising to fight for safe homes after Grenfell

Council union responds to Grenfell


Socialist Party news and analysis

Police accused of killing cover-up

NHS secret cuts plans exposed

Barclays finally charged for having hands in till

Students 'skirt' school uniform issue!

Homelessness - Corbyn offers housing revolution

Benefit cap defeat for government

Tories may have broken election laws... again

What We Saw


Socialist history

Liverpool's 1983-87 socialist council


International socialist news and analysis

Trump and the fossil fuel corporations - a lethal combination for the planet

Jobstown Not Guilty - verdict imminent


Workplace news and analysis

Trade unions must organise to kick out the Tories

Unison conference: confident delegates take control, give Corbyn 'rapturous' welcome

Refuse workers strike against bullying bosses

"What do we want? Pay parity.


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Organise the 'youthquake'! Young Socialists - Generation Socialist

Cardiff: unity in solidarity with Grenfell

Corbyn inspires thousands at Glastonbury

To join the struggle to save the NHS

From Militant to the Socialist Party - what you thought

Pentrich Rebellion 200 years on


 

Home   |   The Socialist 28 June 2017   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Unison:

triangleUniversity pay ballot: vote yes for strike action!

triangleEast Dunbartonshire council workers back further strikes

triangleVictory: NHS workers say no to privatisation

triangleNHS workers angry at reality of mis-sold 'pay rise'

triangleRecycling workers win right to sick pay

Union:

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleCardiff Uber Eats couriers strike back against bosses

triangleTUC congress Brexit debate: unions must lead fight for a general election

triangleNSSN rally: militant trade unionists share ideas to win for workers

Jeremy Corbyn:

triangleThe Socialist inbox

triangleThe struggle to transform Labour

triangleBlairites must go

Minimum wage:

triangleBosses' pay up a fifth while workers' pay falls ...

triangleLondon cleaners' strike: 'Pay us a living wage!'

Pay:

triangleLiverpool airport workers demand decent pay

Glenn Kelly:

triangleLocal government workers' reps reject 2% pay offer

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

19/9/18

RMT

Strikers ready to up the ante over rail safety

19/9/18

Huddersfield

Huddersfield Socialist Party opposes racist EDL

19/9/18

Newcastle

Hundreds of Newcastle United fans attend Mike Ashley Out meeting

19/9/18

Leicester

Socialists and campaigners protest Leicester NHS cuts

19/9/18

Liverpool

March to save threatened Liverpool Women's Hospital

19/9/18

The Socialist

Join our Socialist sales drive for issue 1011

19/9/18

Liverpool

Liverpool airport workers demand decent pay

19/9/18

York

York health workers say no to privatisation

19/9/18

Birmingham

Birmingham home carers' protest demo

19/9/18

UCU

University pay ballot: vote yes for strike action!

19/9/18

Hull

Socialist Students campaigns at Hull freshers fair

19/9/18

Lewisham

Lewisham: binning the rates rise

19/9/18

Leicester

Leicester UCU fights redundancies

14/9/18

Prisons

POA walkout over government failure to make prisons safe

12/9/18

Students

Students unite and fight - free education now!

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


September 2018

August 2018

July 2018

June 2018

May 2018

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999