Thursday, 21 June 2012

Supporting Composite K - Tory Attack Group

I'm at UNISON National Delegate Conference and was supposed to speak on this issue but didn't get a chance as business moved on.

See below my speech

As you've heard the wide spread attack on facility time and trade unions. This attack has been headed by Tory MP, Aidan Burley - you know the man who is under investigation for reportedly attending Nazi themed parties and is part of the Coalition Government.

Facility time has also been attacked in the media, right wing Tory MP's, the Tax Payers Alliance and the new Trade Union Reform Campaign, which has been targeting our people as a waste of money and in some cases attacking individual reps through the media.

The Trade Union Reform Campaign is a well funded Tory front organisation which know very little about the work Trade Unions do.

This group wants to cut the union learning fund, facility time and anything to do with unions in the public sector.

Employers up and down the UK, recognise the value of working with union representatives amongst their own employees, who know the organisation inside out and are best placed in employee relation matters between staff, managers and HR staff.

If employers started negotiating with us outside office hours they would incur an enormous overtime bill for all staff greater than the value of the facility time.

Large and small private companies have come to the same conclusion that facility time is an efficient way of consulting and involving staff to improve decisions at all levels.

Union representatives are an important resource for employers. As well as making a significant contribution to increasing productivity we make workplaces safer, reducing the costs of recruitment and help the public sector and businesses become more responsive to change by helping staff acquire new skills.

We save this government million if not billions of pounds per annum, (as per report published by BERR) but this government seem to be that hung up by our relationship with the Labour Party, they loose sight of the benefits we bring to the workplace. We know that as reps we work hard and we also know how facility time is essential for smooth running of industrial relations.

It was well known before the general election that the tories wanted to smash UNISON, well lets turn that on its head and let us smash this government and elect a party that supports the TU movement.

UNISON working alongside the TUC has worked hard to rebut the myths and has been leading the fightback at local, regional and national level to fight this Tory led attack group. Its important we continue that the good work and support this motion.

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