At the TUC Congress on 12-14 September, unions backed a demonstration at the Tory party conference in Manchester on 2 October and announced plans for a huge strike by many public-sector unions against pension cuts in November.
Predictably, the mainstream press has been full of suggestions, from figures such as “Paymaster General” Francis Maude MP, that the relatively low turnouts in some of the unions’ strike ballots for June 30 somehow delegitimises their actions.
Unable to argue against the justice of striking to reinstate wrongfully-sacked Eammon Lynch and Arwyn Thomas, Boris Johnson and cohorts at the Standard resorted to rattling their sabres against our ve
Tory mayor of London Boris Johnson is campaigning for new laws to make it even more difficult for workers to defend our interests by striking. Prime minister David Cameron has said that he is "open to the idea".
The British state is preparing to mobilise the army to break a prison officers' strike if they take action against the privatisation of Birmingham Prison.
RMT has won a major court victory against injunctions preventing a strike on the Docklands Light Railway; and on the same day, ASLEF also won its appeal against an injunction banning strike action by its members working for London Midland.
After calling off its initial ballot over fears of a legal challenge from bosses, Unite has begun the process of re-balloting British Airways cabin crew workers for further strike action.
The Daily Mail on 22 February carried an article reporting on “top secret” government plans to undermine strikes, with the Cabinet Office setting up a special “unit” to “prevent Britain grinding to a standstill in the event of mass public sector walkouts.”
Unite has declared its own recent ballot of cabin crew workers, which returned a 78.5% majority in favour of strike action, unlawful.
Co-ordinated industrial action by trade unions to halt (at least some of) the massive attacks on workers’ jobs and living standards by this Tory-led Government is promoted as the current main demand of the trade union left.