Contemporary motions submitted to Labour Party conference on right to strike and anti-union laws

righttostrike

At least four Constituency Labour Parties have submitted policy to the upcoming Labour Party conference (27-30 September, Brighton) on the Tories’ threats to trade unions and the wider issue of the right to organise and strike. The Right to Strike campaign believes similar policy has been submitted by other CLPs and is currently drawing up a list.

There are many important issues coming up at the conference, but in many ways this is the most important of all. Workers’ freedom to organise and take action, including to strike, is the crucial right which determines ability to affect everything else – from wages to social provision to the environment.

We call on the Conference Arrangements Committee to ensure that these vital issues are discussed and not pushed off the agenda.

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Broxtowe CLP has submitted the following “contemporary resolution” on trade union rights to Labour Party conference.

Conferences notes

1. That at the start of August trade unions launched a “Kill the Bill” campaign against the Tories’ proposed legislative assault on trade unions and workers’ rights.
2. In early September it emerged that the Government is considering requiring those who take part in a picket to carry an authorisation letter and hand over their details to the police.
3. That in addition to even more severely curtailing the right to strike, the Trade Union Bill also attacks unions’ ability to organise and fund a political voice, including the vital link between the unions and our party.

Conference believes

1. That workers’ rights, including an effective right to strike, are essential both to the labour movement’s ability to stand up for workers’ interests and to democracy.
2. That the Tories are blatant hypocrites, requiring 40 percent or more for a strike though their party took office with the support of less than 25 percent of the electorate.

Conference resolves

1. To work with unions and organisations including the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom and Right to Strike to oppose and attempt to stop the Trade Union Bill.
2. That the next Labour government should repeal these attacks (if they pass), repeal all the anti-trade union laws passed by the 1979-1997 Tory governments, and legislate for strong rights to unionise, win union recognition and collective bargaining, strike, picket and take solidarity action.
3. That the party should unambiguously promote trade union membership and workers’ rights.

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And this from Chesterfield CLP:

Conferences notes

1. That at the start of August trade unions launched a “Kill the Bill” campaign against the Tories’ proposed legislative assault on trade unions and workers’ rights.
2. That in addition to even more severely curtailing the right to strike, the Trade Union Bill also attacks unions’ ability to organise and fund a political voice, including the vital link between the unions and our party.

Conference believes

1. That workers’ rights, including an effective right to strike, are essential both to the labour movement’s ability to stand up for workers’ interests and to democracy.
2. That the Tories are hypocritical requiring 40 percent or more for a strike when victory in parliamentary elections can be won on a much lower percentage of the vote.

Conference resolves

1. To work with the unions and with organisations including the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom and Right to Strike to oppose and attempt to stop the Trade Union Bill.
2. That the next Labour government should repeal these attacks (if they pass), repeal all the anti-trade union laws passed by the 1979-1997 Tory governments, and legislate for strong rights to unionise, win union recognition and collective bargaining, strike, picket and take solidarity action.
3. That the party should unambiguously promote trade union membership and workers’ rights.

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This from Newark CLP:

Conference notes that at the start of August trade unions launched a “Kill the Bill” campaign against the Tories’ proposed assault on trade unions and workers’ rights.

Conference notes that, in addition to ending the ability to vote to strike by a straightforward majority, the Trade Union Bill renders strikes ineffective through longer notice periods, criminalisation of picketing, use of agency labour, punitive fines and state interference via the Certification Officer.

Conference notes that on 6 August it was announced that the legislation will attack public sector unions’ ability to organise by compulsorily ending automatic dues check-off arrangements. It also attacks unions’ right to fund a working-class political voice, including the vital link between unions and our party.

Conference believes that workers’ rights, including the right to strike, are essential to the labour movement’s ability to stand up for workers’ interests, and to democracy.

Conference believes that the Tories are blatant hypocrites, requiring 40 percent or more for a strike though their party took office with the support of less than 25 percent of the electorate.

Conference resolves

To work with the unions and campaigning organisations to oppose the Trade Union Bill.
That the party should unambiguously promote trade union membership and workers’ rights.

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Labour International CLP, representing party members around the world in other countries, has submitted this:

Conference notes that at the start of August trade unions launched a campaign against the Tories’ proposed assault on trade unions and workers’ rights.

Conference notes that workers in other countries with successful, advanced industrial economies and a strong manufacturing base, such as Germany, enjoy wide-ranging employment and union rights.

Conference believes that these rights play a key role in these countries’ economic and social success.

Conference notes that on 6 August it was announced that the legislation will compulsorily end automatic check-off arrangements, affecting public sector unions. It also attacks unions’ right to fund the vital link between unions and our party.

Conference notes that legal advice made public at the end of August states the legislation would undermine freedom of association as set out in Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Conference believes that workers’ rights, including the right to strike, are essential to the labour movement’s ability to stand up for workers’ interests, and to democracy.

Conference resolves

To oppose the Trade Union Bill through legal routes as well as by campaigning in conjunction with the TUC, affiliated unions and socialist societies.
That the next Labour government should repeal these measures if they pass, legislate for strong positive rights to unionise, win recognition and collective bargaining, strike, picket and take solidarity action.
That the party should unambiguously promote trade union membership and workers’ rights in line with ILO standards, along with the levelling-up of workers’ rights across the EU.

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