Union elections

GMB: mudslinging at the top

Allegation and counter-allegation about GMB full-timers have been flying thick and fast. According to an article in Jewish News an (unnamed) GMB full-timer, speaking at a GMB Christmas party in 2019, had said that claims of antisemitism in the Labour Party were a smear spread by “rich Jewish bastards”. Although the matter had been investigated and the full-timer, now retired, had been cleared, the article continued, the current GMB Acting General Secretary Warren Kenny was so concerned about the way the investigation had been conducted that he had brought in ACAS to review the case. Paul...

What's "left" in the NEU?

The NEU [National Education Union] Left was launched as “a membership organisation” on Saturday 13 March. It was “launched” as a brand over two years ago, at the NEU conference.

Over those two years, it has existed as a nebulous bureaucratic lash up between the Socialist Teachers Alliance (STA)...

"A union General Secretary shouldn’t be like a corporate CEO"

John Leach, a candidate for general secretary of the rail and transport union RMT, spoke to Solidarity. The ballot is underway and closes on 4 May 2021. Why are you running for General Secretary? I stood in this election for two reasons. One, I knew that the union needed a candidate with the qualities I've got. Might sound egotistical but then I am running in this election to win. You need experience, character, and capacity to get things done. And often candidates say this, but I was also asked to run by reps and activists across the union. The RMT is often billed as a “left wing fighting...

Vote John Leach #1 for RMT General Secretary!

If you are an RMT member, you will soon be receiving a voting paper for the election of a new General Secretary (GS).

You have the choice of four candidates, and Tubeworker recommends that you vote for John Leach, who is currently our Regional Organiser and has been nominated by seven of our...

Swawkbox returns a favour

Skwawkbox is one of several “alt left” websites to have emerged over the past decade. During Jeremy Corbyn’s leadership of the Labour Party, their declared aim was to defend him against the relentless attacks of the “MSM” (mainstream media). Skwawkbox distinguished itself by apparently having insider access to both Corbyn’s office and to the leadership of Unite. Or, to put it another way, it appeared to be the chosen mouthpiece of the pro-Brexit “Four M’s” faction (Karie Murphy, Seumas Milne, Andrew Murray and Len McCluskey) in Corbyn’s inner sanctum. The source of many of Skwawkbox’s...

Unison left needs unity and democracy

Following the relative success of Paul Holmes’s candidature for Unison general secretary (GS), the left should hope for gains in the elections for the National Executive (NEC). Nominations are open from 1 February to 5 March, and voting will be 4-27 May. However, making the most of the situation needs an open approach to left unity, as a forerunner to a democratic rank and file organisation. Sadly, that has taken a step back after the GS election result. Paul Holmes and the SWP [Socialist Workers Party] have interpreted the result of the GS election to mean there is no need for left unity or...

GMB choice cramped by rules

The election of a new General Secretary for the big general union GMB is underway. Anyone wanting to stand has until the beginning of April to obtain at least 30 branch nominations. Voting runs from the beginning of May until the beginning of June. The usual rules apply. No one seeking nominations and no one standing as a candidate is allowed to “address any meeting of any branch (including his/her own branch) or Region or Section of the Union or any meeting of any kind whether held in a workplace or elsewhere” in order to seek support. Phone canvassing, whether by landline or mobile, is not...

Unison left: a chance for unity?

The right-wing continuity candidate Christina McAnea won the General Secretary election for the public service workers’ union Unison (result announced 11 January). But there were reasons to be encouraged by the result. Rank-and-file left candidate Paul Holmes delivered a strong vote. McAnea won the election with 63,900 votes, Paul Holmes came in second place with 45,220 votes. Candidates backed by different sections of the left won more than 50% of votes cast. Assistant general secretary Roger McKenzie, backed by Jeremy Corbyn and much of the “official” Labour left, got 14,450 votes, and the...

Right-winger Coyne declares for Unite election

This year, 2021, will see an election for the replacement of Len McCluskey as General Secretary of the big cross-sector union Unite. And now union right-winger Gerard Coyne, the runner-up in the last general secretary election, in 2017, has declared his wish to stand. We don't yet know the detailed schedule. Sadly, jockeying for position, armtwisting, backroom deals, backstabbing, slanders and the outright lies are already in full flow. McCluskey’s favoured successor is Howard Beckett. In his capacity as head of the union’s Legal Department he has squandered vast amounts of members’ money on...

McAnea wins in Unison

Christina McAnea has been elected as the new general secretary of Unison — the first woman to head the UK’s largest union. McAnea is viewed as the continuity candidate following Dave Prentis, who is retiring after 20 years as general secretary. She takes up her post on 22 January. The full results were: Christina McAnea 63,900 (47.7%); Paul Holmes 45,220 (33.76%); Roger McKenzie 14,450 (10.79%); Hugo Pierre 10,382 (7.75%). McAnea secured less than 50% of the vote in the First Past The Post election. The combined vote of the three other candidates (all of whom stood against McAnea from the left...

This website uses cookies, you can find out more and set your preferences here.
By continuing to use this website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.