Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/768/16840
The Socialist 5 June 2013 |
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Unison and Labour: Welsh government cuts are still cuts
A Unison member
Socialist Party members attending Unison conference tell me that there are motions on the agenda congratulating the Welsh government for supposedly protecting Welsh workers from the worst impact of the cuts. There must be another Wales besides the one I live in.
As a Welsh worker, I worry about the cuts taking place in the NHS, £660 million of them in the last three years.
When A&E units are shut in London in the name of 'centralising expertise', Unison quite rightly labels it as cuts.
But when a Welsh Labour government downgrades hospitals and services, giving the same reason, our union calls it 'reform', 'reorganisation' or 'modernisation'.
I'm well aware of the disgusting role played by Welsh Labour councils in attacking members' conditions and cutting services.
Two Welsh Labour councils, Neath-Port Talbot (NPT) and Rhondda Cynon Taff (RCT), were enthusiastic pioneers of threatening those refusing to sign new contracts, with worse terms, with the sack.
Not a single Labour council in Wales has publicly committed to not evicting those too poor to pay the bedroom tax.
Not one Welsh Labour MP voted against the Con-Dems' retrospective legislation over workfare. There is no Welsh local authority councillor willing to sign up to the 'councillors against cuts' pledge to vote against all cuts.
If Unison members want to fight Welsh NHS cuts then they can't wait for a lead that's never going to come from above - join with other rank and file trade unionists in the Welsh Shop Stewards Network to build a fight against all cuts.
And we need a political alternative, a fighting, socialist alternative. We need to build the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition.
Wales Shop Stewards Network Conference 2013. Saturday 8 June, 10.00am - 3.00pm, Maldron Hotel, St. Mary Street, Cardiff (Close to Cardiff Central station)