Idiots at large

The hard left faction in engaging in its favourite pastime of Prentis bating over the call for unity in the Labour Party are showing how ignorant they really are. In a power demonstration of overt stupidity, they demonstrate how clueless they are when it comes to democratic process. Vilifying Prentis for calling for party unity and the support of the democratically elected deputy leader Tom Watson.

These politically challenged fools have no concept of unity or the need to keep differences out of the public domain or to create nonsensical feuds that benefit no one. We will be heading for a general election in the very near future and Labour’s energy should be spent on getting a Labour government elected.

Most of these entryist fools are also members of the SWP and socialist parties, bringing their anarchistic immature behaviour into grown up politics.

Fortunately Labour’s NEC stopped dead the attempt to delete the deputies posts as those responsible had not even observed the most basic of rules. I am informed that NEC Chair Wendy Nicols of UNISON reminded them of this fact and ruled it out. Interesting to note that saint Corbyn is now claiming it was his decision. Saint Corbyn can now be seen saying that he supports both Watson and the position of deputy. If this is the case, perhaps he could remove the wall of staffers and actually have a conversation with him.

Dave Prentis’s call for unity is quite correct and we would all do well to pay attention. The less said about Len McCluskey the better.

The hard left faction will take any opportunity to speak against UNISON and its leadership without a thought for the consequences. I suppose when you are languishing in your own self aggrandisement,

I suppose you won’t be considering the consequences or have any interest in cleaning up the mess.

Thanks for reading.

GI Jayne

A Foot in Two Camps

UNISON’s new NEC met for the first time on Wednesday 3rd July, an opportunity for experienced and new members to meet and get to know each other. A very significant meeting as it is probably the first time in 4-5 years that the whole NEC has been in the same room, due to the hard left’s insistance on sitting in a separate location. This was due to the recent flooding of UNISON HQ, so the meeting was moved to the National Education Union building. Far from being a heartfelt reunion, the hard-left faction was keen to reassert its lines of division.

The theme seems to have been to demand a general election now! Now that’s all well and good, but you would kind of think that Labour would have a chance of winning. The latest poll information puts Labour in last position, the lowest it has been since the 1940s.

Voter intentions do not show support for Corbyn’s Labour and the recent local and EU elections would bear that out. Of course, the hard-left faction would claim that the Peterborough by-election was evidence of Labour having the impetus to win a general election. A majority of 683 does not a government make, nor is it cause for celebration. It would be interesting to see how much that campaign cost the party.

The hard left was calling for a mass demonstration to march on parliament and demand a general election, this being an opportunity for them to wave some banners and sell some more cat litter tray liners. So scared would the government be, that they would immediately capitulate and acquiesce to their demands, don’t think that is going to happen somehow.

The key to winning an election is to get the voting public on side, with clear evidencable policies that reflect their needs and priorities. We all know that a change of government is desperately needed, preferably a Labour government. Corbyn’s leadership record is woefully poor from the point of view of getting us closer to No 10. Flip flopping and ambiguity will not help Josephine public choose Labour when they stand in the polling booth.

Part of the NEC meeting is to allocate members to the strategic committees that do all the work between NEC meetings. I want to focus on the Labour LINK committee. This is notoriously difficult to get on given the rules. There has to a certain number of Women, 8 I believe and at least 5 low paid seats. Out of a complement of 12 it can be quite tight, so I am told. Only NEC members who are members of the Labour party are eligible to stand and vote.

The issue I wanted to make you aware of the reader, is that a number of known socialist and SWP members apparently turned out to the meeting with full voting rights and eligibility to stand. This is very worrying as their allegiance to the union and the Labour party is questionable. It surprises me that they are not required to declare these interests at the meeting. I am sure that UNISON members would want assurance that such an important committee would be populated by Labour party members whose interests were focused on the party and not the extremist views of marginal political naïve factionists. Maybe it’s something for the NEC to consider for the future.  I am assured that none of the double-hatters were successful.

Thanks for reading

GI Jayne

 

An amazing coincidence!

A remarkable and amazing coincidence has occurred! A group of candidates that have no connection to unison action broad left (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) have banded together to form a slate. This slate, that has nothing to do with the hard left faction (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) have produced a flyer, on one side the list of candidates and on the other side a manifesto.

A new member asked the hard left faction if there was a unison action broad left slate for the NEC elections. The response came back that there was no unison action broad left slate this year, providing a link to a list of candidates and a manifesto. The questioner asked if there is any connection with unison action broad left, to which the the response was “none whatsoever”.

Being a curious individual I decided to check the information posted for my self.

I thought to myself; this is very odd, there seem to be a majority of people on this list that are known members of unison action broad left. How very strange I thought! Why would these people not associate themselves with unison action broad left? This must be some new group I thought to myself; some new hard left faction; where oh were is unison action broad left?

I then remembered that I had seen this manifesto before, at the Heath and Community conferences.

Imagine my surprise to discover that this mystery group of candidates who have nothing to do with unison action broad left (nudge, nudge, wink, wink) had used the exact same manifesto as the unison action broad left flyers. I ask you, what are the odds? This has to be the greatest coincidence in electoral history.

Of course this is not a coincidence and there is no mystery behind who is responsible for the slate. The hard-left faction are failing miserably to keep their mitts off anything to do with the NEC elections, because they know that anyone who uses the resources of an external body will be liable for disciplinary action. They must think that UNISON members are stupid and that they will not notice that these lying charlatans are behind this. The only idiots here are they themselves. You would have thought that when planning this colossal lie, that one of them may have thought that someone would put two and two together and make four.

These people really are bad news and I ask you reader not to vote for anyone on that list. If they can lie to you about this, what else are they lying about? Those of you that have attended the Community and Health conferences will have seen these documents, so you know they are genuine.

These NEC elections are important to all members, you may not know all the candidates if any in some circumstance, but I think you ought to thank unison action broad left for providing you with a list of people not to vote for.

Thanks for reading.

G I Jayne

Analysing the unison action broad left manifesto

Before anyone says that the document is not produced by the hard left faction ‘unison action broad left left’, let’s just be clear, they have produced it.

This is a short analysis of the document that is accompanying the hard left faction’s slate. If you disagree with this analysis, I welcome your comments. I would also welcome any comments from the candidates themselves. I very much doubt they will. As they have been whipped not to respond to this blog for fear of being exposed.

The National Executive Council Elections are very important for the leadership of our union. Every 2 years, we the members elect the leaders of our union. The NEC works in a democratic way on the principles of collective responsibility and accountability. They are a diverse group who represent the entirety of our union and make major decisions through discussion, debate, consensus and democratic process. The NEC employ staff to assist in delivering its work program and maintain its structures, including operating within the rules and values of the union. The governance of the union is overseen by the NEC who are lay members just like you.

FOR A LEADERSHIP THAT LEADS

We need a serious national leadership for joined-up strike action against the government & employers.

The hard-left fact believe that the response to any issue must be strike action. Driven on by their SWP/Socialist party sponsors, their intent is to use industrial action, not to better the working conditions and pay of our members, but to politicise disputes with the aim of overthrowing the government. In these circumstances the views and needs of members will become a means to achieving this primary aim. They do not care about what happens to members or the issues that arise out of conflict. They are very often no where to be seen after a dispute or be involved in the work required in rebuilding good industrial relations.

What this statement actually means is that they want to remove the legal safeguards and protections afforded to members, so they can initiate strike action whenever and for whatever they want. The hard-left faction care nothing for the consequences, legal or otherwise. They choose to shout it down claiming that the union is undemocratic and blairite. Nothing could be further from the truth, the final say on strike action is always that of the members.

ACROSS THE SECTORS

We must support members in every sector – including the private and community sectors, fighting to win collective bargaining rights.

This is an attempt to gain votes from the private and community sectors. The suggestion that UNISON does not support them is ridiculous. Hard working activists in both of these sectors are fighting to gain agreements with employers supported by the union. Of course the hard-left faction’s approach is to use strike action to try and force employers to their will.

FOR UNITY

UNISON must take a high profile lead, alongside other trade unions in fighting racism, as well as working with organisations opposing racism and fascism. For an anti austerity message of jobs, homes and services – not racism.

This one somewhat misses the mark as well as being offensive in the suggestion that UNISON does not fight racism or have a high profile in the fight. Of all the trade unions, UNISON’s record on fighting racism and fascism is solid. UNISON does have many affiliations with anti racism groups such as Hope not Hate, an arrangement that goes back to their inception. Let’s not forget that the hard-left faction wants to put in a motion to prevent Hope not Hate from attending our conferences.

I am not quite sure because of the way it is written, that they aren’t saying that UNISON is not putting out messages of anti austerity, jobs homes and services and putting out racist messages. If this is the case, they should be ashamed of themselves. Let’s remember, they were content to share racist materials on their facebook page. They refused to remove this material, which is there to this day. They attacked Dave Prentis for showing leadership and taking action against anti-semitism. Check their social media output and you will find nothing that attacks anti-semitism.

They were repeatedly asked to give their position on anti-semitism, they never responded!

FOR A SOCIALIST, ANTI-AUSTERITY LABOUR PARTY

No more members’ money should go to support MPs/Councillors attacking Jeremy Corbyn. We must support any Councillors making a stand against cuts and call on Labour Councils to stand up against the cuts now.

The right to criticise the Labour leader or indeed any labour politician is the right of all Labour Party members where there is justification. To cut off support for people that share our values and provide a voice for us in parliament and local councils is naïve. It’s a bit “pot calling kettle” this one, given the amount of abuse they have given Dave Prentis and other officials of our union.

Labour Link have the responsibility to make decisions about financial support, which is actually limited in its operation. The fact the SWP/Socialist party members believe that they can dictate UNISON policy outside of rules beggars belief. The issues that surround Labour councils and austerity are very complicated and that is as much as I will say in this critique.

As far as I am aware, the Labour Party are a socialist anti austerity party, or am I mistaken? What they really mean is a SWP/Socialist party influenced Labour Party.

FOR A GENERAL ELECTION NOW!

We should be using our influence in the TUC for a national demonstration to kick this government out.

Anyone who believes that work is not being undertaken by UNISON through the TUC and Labour link does not know our union. UNISON and the TUC could call for a national demonstration, but in reality what would it achieve at this time? Time effort and resources would be better utilised in creating a credible alternative that is electable and supports UNISON’s aims and objectives.

Is having a demonstration really what is is important to UNISON members who are struggling with the cost of living, the threats to jobs and services and the uncertainty of Brexit?

FOR DEMOCRACY

Members and activists must have full transparent, democratic control over the union.

These elections are a transparent democratic process and members will make the decision on who represents them on the National Executive Council. The NEC has governance on all things which are moderated through the rules of the union and the agreed protocols and processes. What the hard-left faction mean by this is not actually about democracy or indeed transparency. What they want is to be able to ignore the rules, processes and procedures that do not fit their objectives. They want to overturn democratic decisions and scrap collective responsibility. Those that are currently on the NEC don’t even sit with the NEC. They prefer to be in a different room and not to engage fully with the democratic process. See my previous post  Upstairs Downstairs 

FOR FAIRER BRANCH FUNDING

Put the money where the work is!

The issue of funding is always going to be an issue as the resources of the union are not infinite. What they mean by putting the money where the work is; is linked to their attitude towards strike and funding of the SWP/Socialist party. There have been too many examples of monies being spirited away from branches preventing much needed work and functionality. There are strict rules surrounding the use of members money for good reason. Doubtless there will be much debate at National Delegate conference on this subject.

DEFEND THE RIGHT TO DISSENT!

Branches and members must have the right to campaign against national policy – including opposing pay deals – free from interference of unelected union officers.

This really does demonstrate their anti-democratic, anti-rules, separatist stance. One of their number was suspended from office and they perpetuated the myth that it was for speaking out against the Health pay deal. This turned out not to be true; the individual concerned was put under investigation because of their behaviour towards a member of staff. Sadly I don’t know the precise details, but is was sufficient to warrant an investigation. The matter has since been dealt with through the appropriate process. The decision to suspend the individual and the subsequent investigation was made by Lay officials of the NEC who have responsibility for these matters.

The NEC employs staff to undertake certain duties and on its behalf and work within the rules and direction of the NEC. All decisions are made by elected Lay officials. In the example given, the individual concerned appeared before a panel of elected Lay officials who made the decision based on the evidence presented under the a process of natural justice. Having heard the case, the decision was made to lift the suspension and as far as I am aware, no obvious sanction was imposed. Of course none of this was mentioned by the hard-left faction or on the individuals campaign facebook page. The hard-left faction continue to perpetuate the myth that their comrade was a victim of of over zealous paid officials.

Taking all of the above into account, what exactly is the relevance to ordinary subs paying members? Well not a lot really. As a member I want the people we elect to operate within the rules, support our union and most importantly support them when they need it. Unison action broad left work on an SWP/Socialist party agenda; they take a parochial view of the world based on their own agenda.

Reader, I ask you to seriously consider what a vote for anyone on their slate will mean for our union. We need strong voices to represent us and we need people who are interested in the issues that matter to us and that put our union first. It is perfectly ok for people to have different political view points but bring our union’s aims and values into those politics, not those political aims into our union.

The elections start on the 15th April 2019 and run until the 17th May, please choose wisely and continue to keep our union something to be proud of.

Thanks for reading.

G I Jayne

Excuse me for asking?

Excuse me for asking? but why are a group of unison members who want to campaign within unison celebrating the following? “23 out of 25 seats on NIPSA (Northern Ireland Public Sector union) NEC won by the Broad Left in this week’s elections. UNISON next…” This was posted on the hard-left Facebook page this afternoon.

Unison action broad left have continuously denied having any conection to the socialist party/SWP. If you look up the origins of the “broad left”, you will discover that it has its roots in the socialist party, this link refers The Broad Left Organising Committee There is also further information out there if you care to look for it.

There is no beating about the bush on this matter, YOU ARE BEING LIED TO! This outside body is seeking to infiltrate UNISON for its own polictical ends. They are not the honest brokers they claim to be. What the above statement tells us is that they are seeking to infiltrate all trade unions, to raid their resources and influence members to their ideology.

I ask you to condider reader, why they would be celebrating the outcome of a different trade union’s elections if they were only concerned with matters UNISON?

UNISON members need to vote carefully in the upcomming NEC elections, to ensure that these lying charlatans do not get a firmer foothold in the running of our union.

You have been warned!

Thanks for reading

GI Jayne

Braying Dogs Auto-Sodomised by their own Hubris

The hard-left faction went full pelt in their attacks on UNISON General Secretary Dave Prentis yesterday (18-02-19). They were calling for Saint Corbyn to “LAUNCH A STRUGGLE TO KICK OUT BLAIRITES AND FIGHT FOR SOCIALIST POLICIES”. The term Blairite of course being Socialist party code for anyone who does not agree with their crackpot view of the world. I always find it interesting that the Socialist party feel they are able to dictate Labour party policy, or are in any position to demand anything of them.

We also have an aledged UNISON member commenting from the Socialist party A numpty speaks Of course the Socialist party/SWP do not have any influence on the hard-left faction, funny how they are the only ones commenting.

The hard-left faction were claiming that Prentis comments were sympathetic towards the independent 7; I have to confess that I struggle to see it. If you can see it in the statement below, please point it out to me.

Commenting on the announcement today (Monday 18-02-19) that seven Labour MPs have resigned from the party and are to sit as an independent group, UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said:

“This is terrible news and the last thing public service employees across the UK will want to hear.

“Working people need a Labour government but split parties don’t win elections. Labour’s overriding concern must be to look long at hard at the reasons why the MPs feel they are no longer able to stay in the party.

“The party must get its act together over Brexit and ensure the country is spared the calamity of a no deal. Crashing out of Europe would be disastrous for public services and ordinary people across the country, and it must be stopped.”

The below statement was put out by unison action broad left.

SEVEN MPS’ QUIT LABOUR IN ANTI-CORBYN SPLIT – CORBYN MUST LAUNCH A STRUGGLE TO KICK OUT BLAIRITES AND FIGHT FOR SOCIALIST POLICIES

Many UNISON members will have been unsurprised to see the long-awaited split of some Blairite MPs away from the Labour Party finally manifest itself as the Independent Group in parliament of 7 MPs.

Unfortunately the first statement from our general secretary appears to have more sympathy for the seven than for Corbyn.

These MPs have been firmly hostile to the leadership of Labour by Jeremy Corbyn, and his radical manifesto in 2017, that put forward many of the demands that trade unionists have been making including a £10 an hour minimum wage, renationalisation of the railways, a mass council house building programme and more.

Corbyn’s repeated victories have been followed with a strengthening of the left in UNISON and the beginnings of a more combative policy to fight for our members interests.

Instead these Blairites wish to take us back to the past with neoliberal policies and support for austerity, as expressed in their statement of their views:

“Britain works best as a diverse, mixed social market economy, in which well-regulated private enterprise can reward aspiration and drive economic progress and where government has the responsibility to ensure the sound stewardship of taxpayers’ money and a stable, fair and balanced economy”

If these MPs had remained within the Labour Party they would have continued to fight for such positions and sabotage a Corbyn-led government from implementing its programme.

Therefore it was entirely correct for those on the left to argue for support for mandatory reselection so that such MPs could have been challenged by the members rather than being able to leave on their own terms.

The seven are far from the only Labour MPs who share their views, with the majority of Blairite MPs still being of the opinion that it is better to attack Corbyn from within the Labour Party.

UNISON should immediately withdraw any financial or other support from these MPs.

Corbyn should withdraw the whip from any MP who helps to prop up the Tories.

These events make even clearer that what is needed to consolidate the victory of Corbyn in two leadership elections is the refounding of the Labour Party, restoring a socialist clause in its constitution and the collective rights of trade unions and opening it’s doors to all groups who wish to join.

 

For those of you that have been watching events unfold in parliament over recent months, you will have noticed that opportunity after opportunity to hammer the Tories has been either missed or ignored. The labour leadership have pissed away the chance to make clear ground and bring us closer to a Labour government. I do not agree with the actions of the 7, but I do share their frustration.

Prentis is quite right in his call for the party to look at reasons that the 7 have left the party, this should be a priority. The fantasy politics of unison action broad left are just that; fantasy. This naive statement shows how monotheistic their ideology is and how clueless they really are. They are content to worship at the altar of Corbyn whilst labouring on their own genitals, ignoring the world collapsing around them. Anyone who shows any descent from their world view is to be vilified, cast out and labeled a Blairite or right-wing. This is a convenient way of ignoring the bleeding obvious, so they never have to confront the flaws in their arguments. The shouting down of opponents and the bullying of them is common place, however they refuse to recognise this behaviour in themselves, but are quick to point it out in their opponents.

The nihilistic braying of unison action broad left damages not only UNISON but the Labour movement. Their outragous attacks on Dave Prentis bring us all down. One of the worts examples of yesterday’s comments was “our general secretary has always been a spineless bastard”, a comment that has no foundation whatsoever.

I have been a lifelong member of the Labour party and I want nothing more than to see a Labour government in power to undo the mess the Tories have left us in and to rebuild a caring and supportive society. I recognise that we will need people of good conscience from different backgrounds to help us achieve this. I am saddened by the 7 MPs who have left the party, but I respect the fact that they believe they had no alternative.

On the opposite side of the coin, we see they party re-admiting Derek Hatton into membership. This was a man who cared nothing for our members or our party and I can see that nothing has changed. He caused more damage to our movement than anyone else in the eighties and the ban on his membership should have been lifelong.

Always check the facts reader, the truth is out there.

Thanks for reading.

 

GI Jayne

 

 

 

Nominations Nominations

You may be forgiven for not noticing that prospective NEC candidates are currently seeking nominations from Branches for the forthcoming NEC elections. The hard-left faction, although trying hard not to fly the unison action broad left flag, are fielding about 50 candidates, if the list they are peddling in their begging letters are to be believed. The most recent of these was circulated at the Black Members Conference.

The list of demands on the leaflet are somewhat confusing, because it looks like they are demanding it of themselves. But let’s be generous and look at each one.

We demand unison action against racism (obviously slotted in to appeal to Black Members) Difficult to understand exactly what they are demanding, as UNISON’s record on challenging racism is pretty solid. Interesting they make this demand, given the fact they allowed racist material to be displayed on their face book page. Hypocrisy of the highest order.

We demand unison action to save our jobs Presumably this is a call for more strikes, as they are clearly failing to recognise the hard work of branches, activists and officers. As a lot of those named are officers and stewards of branches, are they suggesting that they themselves are doing nothing? Well, they are probably not putting the work in were its needed. If your response to everything is strike, you are bound to miss other oportunities.

We demand unison action for decent pay This suggests that UNISON has done nothing on pay, the last time I looked UNISON members voted on pay deals. The hard-left faction do not respect the decisions of members who make democratic decisions. Don’t they trust members to do this? You would think not.

We demand tories out now and a general election Straight from the SWP playbook. This call can be heard at the paste tables of the SWP and Socialist party in most cities. Interesting that they are not demanding this of UNISON, in fact it is not clear who they are demanding it of?

Let’s have a look at some of the comments contained within a unison action broad left nomination request.

The way the nec works must change and It must reach decisions member’s want.

The union works in a democratic way, so by default not everyone is going to be satisfied, It is of course right and proper that democratic decisions are supported by all members of the NEC by virtue of collective responsibility, something the hard-left faction are not keen on.

Given that this individual prefers to segregate themself from the NEC by sitting in a different room, I think I may agree with this one; yes turn up and get involved!

Not content with continuing austerity, members in this region are being forced to work for no pay.

Now forgive me if I am wrong, but isn’t what is described here slavery? Wouldn’t you expect this individual to be reporting this to the police? At the very least you would expect them to do something about it it?

The rule  book states we  are a member led union. But are we? Or are we led by  unelected  paid officers, the  majority of whom are NOT unison.members. And what about the majority  of the  current nec? Can  they  really be  trusted to defend our  member’s.?

This is a long running claim by the hard-left faction that has no basis in fact whatsoever. It does emphasise their total ignorance of how the union works and given this individual has been a member of the NEC for a number of years, it clearly demonstraits that they have not been paying attention. Paid officers of the union are employees of UNISON, who are free to join a trade union. There are a number of trade unions recognised by unison who make up the staff side just like any progressive employer. Some of them are UNISON members mainly for reasons of solidarity. If UNISON did not employ people it would not be able to function.

Can the current NEC members be trusted? Well I don’t think I would be trusting this individual. I am sure that this sort of rhetoric is the cause of great offence to current NEC members who do work hard on behalf of the members.

There must be no more polical witch hunts. Both  branches and members must  have the  right to campaign against  national policy- including  opposing  pay deals – free from faceing  suspension and free from the interference of unelected  of paid officers.

Please read my previous blogs on this subject. To summarise, an individual is currently suspended from UNISON and is under investigation. The hard-left faction are claiming it is for speaking out against UNISON policy. The truth of the matter is that they don’t know what the person is suspended for or what the allegations amount to. They have mounted a campaign of support for a reason that is nothing more than fantasy. I am sure that the truth will leak out once ever the formal process has ended. UNISON has specific rules relating to the conduct of its members and where allegations of a breach of these rules are made, it has a duty to investigate. UNISON employs staff who are trained and able to conduct these investigations. The decision as to wether the allegations are upheld is made by lay officials.

The time has come for members to take control of thier union. Yes  there has been industrial action but these have been grass roots level action and only belatedly received national backing, what we need is an NEC that leads and not follows. No more letting branches  fight alone.

Another old chestnut this one with a touch of the Brexit missive. All industrial action must be approved by the National Industrial Action Committee, having been first approved by the Regional Secretary concerned. There has been industrial action and it has been supported by the wider union and the Regions concerned. If they believe that there has been no industrial action, they must have been living in a bubble.

As I have explained many times before, all industrial action has to abide by legislation to provide protection to both members and the union. The hard-left faction keep ignoring this vitally important point. What they mean by “fighting alone” is that they want secondary action which is unlawful.

What is meant by “an NEC that leads not follows” is beyond me, as to its meaning, perhaps someone could explain it?

Most of the requests that I have seen cover the same territory, some in a slightly different way and many are obviously cut and paste from the same template. The template has probably been penned by the shadowy characters who associate themselves with unison action broad left, obviously fuelled by the SWP/Socialist party.

Having been declared as an outside organisation, unison action broad left are struggling to leave their fingerprints off the campaign, however the cracks are forming. You don’t have to be a forensic genius to to see this.

My advice to you reader, would be to support anyone other than the people that appear on the list. If you care about the union and everything it does, don’t give these people a bigger foothold on your union. They claim they do not want to take over the union; the evidence proves that they do.

Thanks for reading.

GI Jayne

 

 

 

Gilets Jerks

So, our friends in the hard-left rouge faction, are now calling upon our members to take part in illegal activities. Let’s be like the French, don the yellow vests and lets stop putting up with this vile Tory government”. They are calling on members to attend the up-and-coming demonstration in London on 12 January 2019, organised by the People’s assembly the campaign for a general election. As you will no doubt recall, the activities of Gilets Jaunes in Paris towards the end of 2018, involved acts of violence, vandalism and disorder. This behaviour cause d a number of innocent members of the public to be injured by those involved in these activities.

Unison action broad left, seem to be of the belief that is okay to involve our members in this type of criminal activity. Clearly, they have no concerns to the welfare and well-being of our members, and are content to use them is Canon fodder in support of their own aims. This attitude is totally reckless and not what our trade union is about. Unison has a long tradition of peaceful protest in support of its aims and objectives. Unison has never condoned the use of violence or aggression to support its policies. The call on members to act in a violent and criminal manner, exemplifies the attitude the hard-left faction when it comes to supporting our members. They seem content to put them in harm’s way and to make them into criminals.

These people are nothing more than anarchists masquerading as socialists, they bring shame upon the trade union movement. Some of these people will be looking to get elected to UNISON’s NEC in the very near future. While we are on this subject it is worth noting that the hard-left faction is fearful of paid officials attending their branch meetings. You have to ask why? Well it is clear they have something to hide and are now claiming that paid officials cannot attend branch meetings. This is of course nonsense! Accountability and working within the union’s rules are something they fear. If they have nothing to hide, why are they against it?

It is worth noting that one of the shady characters that is not a UNISON member makes comment on UNISON’s rules. Why is this person interested in the activities of UNISON? They claim to be an authority, however this Socialist party member has a little too much to do with the business of unison action broad left, why is this?

Their real agenda will become more apparent, although if you take time to look, it is plain for all to see. They are happy to cast members into the dust and use them in support of their fantasy politics driven by the SWP/Socialist party agenda. Remember the rouge faction are not recognised by UNISON and are classed as an outside body; there is good reason for this.

Thanks for reading

GI Jane

Claims that UNISON is anti-democratic are bogus

Below is a breakdown of the facts relating to the unison action statement on the recent NEC decision on the election procedures. The original text of the statement is in italics  and the commentary in red.

UNION DEMOCRACY AND RIGHT TO CAMPAIGN UNDER THREAT.

At the 6th December NEC a new set of elections procedures were passed that we believe are not only a breach of the rules of the union but also of our conference policy.    

There is no breach of UNISON’s rules, the election procedures are within the law and within UNISON’s rules and has little to do with conference policy.    

The new election procedure states:

“No nominee or candidate shall invite or accept any donation or contribution in money or kind from any organisation or company, including from any provider of goods or services to UNISON, any political party or any employer in which unison organises.  For the avoidance of doubt an outside organisation or company includes but is not limited to an organisation, club, association or other entity which consists wholly or partly of UNISON members and is not provided for in UNISON rules. In determining whether or not something fits into this category, income resources and formal structures would be considered .This is not an exhaustive list.”

Who would have any issue with this? Why would the union want outside interference in its procedures? It would not be acceptable to have a political party or organisation supporting candidates. It is a reasonable expectation that those standing for office support the aims, objectives, values and rules of our union. It is worth noting that the hard-left faction asked for the definition of an outside organisation and they clearly fall into this category. Claims that they are a grass roots movement of unison members campaigning from within can easily be disproven. There is a plethora of evidence to demonstrate that they do not work within the rules of the union, that they actively campaign against the aims and objectives of they union, that they bully and harass officials of the union and that their interests are not those of the union.  There is overwhelming evidence that they are backed by the rape apologist SWP and the militant Socialist party.

Not satisfied with Banning members of political parties or organisations campaigning last year in the SGE elections in support of their members, the union is now effectively banning any group of unison members getting together to campaign.

This claim is not factual, the union is not banning members, it is preventing outside organisations from campaigning against the union and having undue influence over its democratic processes. Unison action broad left is not a democratic organistation, it does not comply with UNISON’s rules, procedures or protocols. As demonstrated at the NEC meeting of the 6th December 2018, they do not support collective responsibility or accountability. They are not recognised by UNISON, they actively campaign against UNISON, they use bullying and harassing tactics in support of their own aims.

UNISON is a listening union that encourages members to engage with its democratic processes within the rules of the union. The hard-left faction does not operate within the rules of the union and are backed by extremist political groups.

This is clearly aimed at trying to ban and silence UnisonAction from campaigning in the forthcoming NEC elections. It is our view that this is a clear breach of the rules of the union.

Unison action have determined their own destiny by virtue of their actions and activities. They have self-determined their own status outside of UNISON’s rules. As an independent trade union, UNISON can determine its own rules and procedures within the law outside of the influence of external bodies. There is no breach of UNISON’s rules here.        

The right of members to campaign is specifically provided for in Rule B2.5 and our national conference in 2001 further clarified this when it passed composite I contained in the democracy in unison guidelines.

Rule B2.5 states:

To promote and safeguard the rights of members to have an adequate opportunity to participate in the initiation and development of policy making, through meetings, conferences, delegations or ballots, and to encourage the maximum democratic debate, together with the right to campaign to change policy, while at all times acting within the rules and agreed policy.

The Democracy in UNISON guidelines (link below) are a clear and unambiguous set of principles.

https://www.unison.org.uk/content/uploads/2013/06/On-line-Catalogue133053.pdf

The NEC is bound by Rule D2.1 “not do anything that is inconsistent with these Rules or the policy of the Union as laid down by the National Delegate Conference”. 

The arbitrary selection of sentences from particular rules is disingenuous, as it removes the context. As with all things, rules cannot be read in isolation. The suggestion or rather allegation here, is that the NEC have acted outside of the rules. Nothing could be further from the truth. This is just another example of wishful thinking on behalf of the faction. As the DIU guidelines state Outside bodies should not be able to seek to undermine the established and agreed policies of the union”. This is clear and unambiguous. Therefore, the NEC is acting within the rules, guidance and policy of the union.

Rule D 2.1 states:

FUNCTIONS AND AUTHORITY

The general management and control of the Union between National Delegate Conferences shall be vested in the National Executive Council, which shall comprise representatives elected from the Regions and Service Groups plus four national black members’ seats, two young members’ seats and two disabled members’ seats. It shall have full power and authority to act  on behalf of the Union in every respect and for every purpose falling within the objects of the Union. It shall not do anything that is inconsistent with these Rules or the policy of the Union as laid down by the National Delegate Conference.

The fact that the NEC have full power and authority to act on behalf of the Union in every respect and for every purpose falling within the objects of the Union, is something that the faction is totally opposed to. It is worth remembering that NEC members are elected for that specific purpose as custodians of the union’s rules and democratically decided objectives. The NEC does have the power and responsibility to make executive decisions on behalf of the union as this rule clearly demonstrates.

As such we believe that the new election rules agreed by a majority of the NEC are acting outside of the rules of the union and conference policy.

This is a clear distortion of the facts which contradicts the points they are making above, or rather it is conveniently ignored. The DIU guidelines have this to say about collective responsibility. 

Collective Responsibility

3.1 Once a policy is established it is important that all constituent parts of the union work together to promote it and take collective responsibility in supporting it.

3.2 This principle was reinforced by the 1998 National Delegate Conference which decided: ‘there is an obligation on branches, regions and the NEC to promote existing policy and to accept collective responsibility once decisions have been democratically taken. Once policy has been agreed by democratic means at an appropriate level, all members should expect that those who may not have agreed with the decision establishing policy but were in a minority, should not be able simply to withdraw it. Such action would undermine the whole principle of collective strength and solidarity which the democracy of the union is established to promote. Democracy cannot thrive if agreed policies count for nothing. Outside bodies should not be able to seek to undermine the established and agreed policies of the union.

It is not the NEC who are acting outside of the rules and conference policy, it is those that associate themselves with the hard-left faction. Their activities and deliberate refusal to work within the rules and support democratic process is akin to anarchy, as they seek to undermine the core principles of UNISON.

There is also a question whether this would also be in contravention of the Human Rights act and the freedom of assembly.

Article 11: Freedom of assembly and association has nothing to do this. The below link provides information as to the provision of article 11. There is no attempt by UNISON to prevent the existence of the faction, the NEC decision is to prevent external organisations form influencing the democratic process.

https://www.equalityhumanrights.com/en/human-rights-act/article-11-freedom-assembly-and-association

In a further worrying development a number of us have been threatened with action being taken against us for an alleged breach of collective responsibility for daring to raise our concerns and voting against the proposals. 

If this is the case, then it is evident that they are not working within the rules and objectives of the union and the threat of disciplinary action under these circumstances is within the rules of the union.

It is urgent that branches and members raise their concerns with regards the new proposals by passing resolutions at branch, region and raise it on the Service group Executives. 

This is a prima facia case of these individuals flouting UNISON’s rules, protocols and conference policy. The act of encouraging others to do so is in my opinion a disciplinary matter. They are clearly failing to follow rules and and in particular collective responsibility. It is reasonable for members to expect elected officials to follow the rules and procedures of the union and for them to uphold the values and procedures of their union. This behaviour is a wanton act of vandalism and a demonstration of the anti-democracy attitude of this this faction.  

Vicky Perrin –                     NEC member Yorkshire and Humberside

Jim McFarlane –                NEC member Scotland

Hugo Pierre –                    Black members NEC member

April Ashley –                    Black members NEC member

Jacqui Berry –                    NEC member South East

Michelle Goodman –       NEC member South West

Steve North –                      NEC member North West

It may be a reasonable assumption that those that have put their names to this document are members of the Socialist party, perhaps they would like to either confirm or deny that?

Thanks for reading.

GI Jayne

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