Tuesday, 19 May 2015

General Federation of Trade Unions president warns of drift to Tory dictatorship

President of the GFTU John Fray has claimed that Britain is on the drift to a dictatorship under the present Conservative Government.

The GFTU president warned that the Tories wou"now be full of confidence, feeling free once again to target trade unions with deliberate intention to legally restrict our member's rights to take actions to protect and improve their terms and conditions."
He added that "the Tories also intend to weaken our human rights and gerrymander the constituencies to make sure even more seats fall to the Tories in 2020."
Fray outlined what had gone wrong for the Labour Party in the general election, with UKIP biting into the core vote. “We must get rid of the anti-trade union Tories,” said Fray, who called for trade unions to stop being marginalised and make their voices heard. “The GFTU must make sure we’re on the platform. Trade unions big or small have a right to a voice and a vision,” said Fray, who called for the trade unions to train up future leaders.

Adrian Weir, assistant national secretary of Unite, warned of the dangers represented by the proposed TTIP agreement.

Weir quoted Joseph Stiglitz, nobel laureate, claiming that negotiators “will almost surely push for the lowest standard, levelling downward rather than upward.”

He illustrated this point with concerns of the US trade unions that could see their rights downgraded to south east Asian levels under the same type of agreements as TTIP, rather than pushed up to European standards. European workers equally have the concern of their rights being reduced to US levels.

Weir hit an optimistic note, claiming that the battle can be won just as it had been back in the 1990s, when the corporate inspired Multilateral Agreement on Investment was defeated. Already, the agreement has hit troubles in the US Congress.
“There are 2 million signed up to a petition in opposition to TTIP – we can and must win,” said Weir.
Robert Mooney of Community gave an impassioned account of a trade union visit to Bhopal on the 30th anniversary of the Union Carbide accident.

Mooney recalled how 8,000 died at the time, with a further 25,000 dying since. “At best this was culpable homicide,” said Mooney, who recalled that children are still being forced to drink contaminated water.

Roberto Calzadilla, Bolivian ambassador to Britain, told how under the presidency of Eva Morales wages had increased fourfold and everyone over 60 has the right to a pension.
Calzadilla outlined President Eva Morales vision of living a life that was in balance with the community and planet. “We consider water a human right. The leader’s vision is to live well, in balance, sleep, eat well, care about your neighbour-it is about getting into balance,” said Calzadilla, who recalled how the role of the state in Bolivia is redistributing wealth

No comments:

Post a Comment