Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1135/32558
RMT: Support Alan Pottage for assistant general secretary
Socialist Party members in RMT
Socialist Party members in the RMT are supporting Alan Pottage in the assistant general secretary election, called to replace Mick Lynch, who has been elected as general secretary.
The announcement of a major reorganisation of national rail services (see page 5) as well as the failure of Transport for London to agree a funding deal with the government, raise the spectre of redundancies and cost cutting by attacking pensions and pay.
Already the national rail industry has imposed a two-year pay freeze. In response to this, RMT has adopted a fighting programme of resisting job cuts and defending the pay and conditions of transport workers across rail, maritime and road transport sectors.
The challenge facing the union leadership now is to mobilise the membership and put that programme into action. Alan Pottage understands that challenge, and has a record of the kind of militant, organised trade unionism necessary to deliver it. Importantly, Alan has always defended the concept of a members-led union.
Socialist Party members will welcome any opportunity to discuss the building of Alan's campaign and, crucially, the programme he stands on. The focus has to be giving a lead to the 80,000 RMT members who understand the threat presented by the government at this time. We need our national officers to lead from the front and ensure that rallies and branch meetings are taking place in every region to bring members together at this time.
We need a commitment to coordinate, as far as possible, fights to defend pensions, resist job cuts and bust the pay freeze in every sector. This approach needs to be taken into the wider trade union movement, with RMT in the vanguard.
The RMT has been to the fore in the fight for independent working-class political representation over the last two decades, including the development of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition and supporting Jeremy Corbyn. This legacy of former RMT leader Bob Crow must be defended.
We also need officers who will respect the democratic control of the membership, through their elected national executive, not just once a year at AGMs, but as a method of ensuring that our union is led by the membership at all times.
We look forwards to working with Alan and seeking to promote these policies in RMT.
In The Socialist 26 May 2021:
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