Tory Trade Union bill is an attack on a fundamental human right

Under the Tories’ proposed new law, strike ballots would need a 50% turnout for industrial action to be legal.   But in the case of ‘essential’ public services – health, education, transport and fire services – 40% of those voting have to have voted in favour.   In other words, 80% which is the combination of the general turnout proposal and the new 40% yes vote must have voted in favour.   That would make almost all strikes illegal, particularly in large and dispersed workforces where postal ballots rarely achieve this.   This is a blatant attack on the rightful role of trade unions in being able to protect their members against exploitation at work – several recent polls have consistently found that more than 70% of the public believe unions are ‘essential to protect workers’ interests’.

There are several other arguments against this vindictive piece of legislation.   The proposed rules don’t apply in any other elections.   If only ballots with a turnout of more than 50% are to be taken as valid, then the election of many politicians including the Mayor of London would be dismissed as invalid.   The new Thatcherite Secretary of State for Business was elected on a lower turnout than 50%.   Indeed the current Tory government was elected on only a 22% vote of those entitled to vote in the recent general election.

A turnout threshold is irrational: it makes abstentions more powerful than votes against.   Thus a ballot backing action with an exact 50% turnout would be deemed invalid if just one no vote had abstained instead.   Moreover setting unrealistic thresholds for strike ballots is especially unreasonable when the form of balloting is restricted to postal ballots. Further, setting the bar so high for legally compliant strikes increases the likelihood of wildcat industrial action, and few employers would seriously wish to dismiss workers who take part in illegal industrial action especially if they are providing essential public services.

The UK already has the most restrictive strike laws of any advanced economy, and adding to them by imposing what is effectively a ban on strikes altogether is dragging Britain down the path adopted by dictators and authoritarian regimes.   Paradoxically It may not even work.   The most successful unions such as the RMT usually command high enough turnouts to be able to reach the new thresholds.   The new law might even galvanise members who have not voted before in strike ballots.   And the public may even be more sympathetic to strikers if they feel union members are being unduly victimised.


5 thoughts on “Tory Trade Union bill is an attack on a fundamental human right

  1. “………………imposing what is effectively a ban on strikes altogether is dragging Britain down the path adopted by dictators and authoritarian regimes.”


    Once again we find ourselves on exactly the same page here regarding the direction that the Tories are taking this country in, this is American corporate neolibral economic policy; also called American ethical nihilism, (the only criterion for, “good,” is financial profit,) at it’s most blatant and brutal and uncompromising.

    Anyone familiar with the history of the American interventions in South and Central America or in the Caribbean and the Middle East, (both current and historic,) can already see where all this is going.

    America demands a completely supine submission to the American hegemony from all it’s client states, that brooks neither opposition nor neutrality; and has toppled democratic governments all over the world, usually on the pretext that they were under the influence of communism, (these days they prefer to use the threat of Islamic fundamentalism,) and replaced them with an American sponsored and militarily backed junta of one form or another; self styled elites, repressive, unrepresentative and anti democratic.

    I recently came across an account of life as worker for the United Fruit Company in Guatemala during the great depression of the 1930’s were the workers there were simply forced to work for appalling wages under threat of execution if they resisted or objected.

    This is more recent;

    It also worth noting that groups such as G4S make a point of promoting there services in breaking up and suppressing unions and all forms of opposition to government, democratic or not, all over the world.

    The Labor party in the UK and even trade union movement have forgotten where they came from and why they even exist.

  2. Good post JP. Honduras too, more recently have had a hard time with the UF Co.

    Mr Meachers comment re the Tories’ 22% was too, a cutting observation.

    There are too the hidden things: For example the Ebola “Epidemic” still making headlines in west Arica, a thousand miles from its home in the east. Many have suggested that this is the form of TB that plagues Africa and not ebola at all. The African TB virus is also a Filovirus, and, in the time it took “ebola” to kill 3000 African people, TB killed 600,000. But the, in go the US marines? Right as there are serious “Strikes” going on in SL diamond mines over pay and conditions which would require a very perceptive human being to differntiate same from slavery. And of course “Slavery” is the game being played. Read the Cestui Que Vie Act, with particular reference to articles 1&4.

  3. You forget bill and miranda gates who now have a laboratory out there dealing in ebola is it to keep the one percent inmune I wonder

  4. I know of the US Bio-Research lab hidden within the hospital, but no, I had no idea that Bill and Melinda Gates were involved with that facility. As with the Bio Labs in Georgia I thought this was DoD/CIA. The Gates are by now recognised as very far from the Philanthropists they present as. They, like so many involved in the UN depopulation agenda and “Sustainable” living “Agenda 21” are pushing toxic vaccinations designed to sterilise. We have it far worse here: Vaccinations using Thimerisol (mercury) are pushed mercilessly, along with Gene and Sperm damaging substances like BPA/Phalates, and water fluoridation, and GMO products using US toxins like Glyphosphates which are now known to cause cancers. Added to that the Tories, following the EU’s capitulation to US lobbying, are now pushing for GMO spuds, rapeseed, and other trials to begin. Asking us whether we desire eating poison is considered bad for business. Our government is our enemy it would seem.

  5. Everyone loves a good conspiracy theory, (I’m no exception,) but do either of you have even a shred of evidence for any of it; Bill and Melinda Gates’s, “evil,” Ebola laboratory for example.

    For the record and to the very best of my understanding Ebola isn’t actually that contagious, (you need to exchange body fluids or eat nearly raw infected fruit bat,) anyway, not by the standards of other and far more dangerous contagious diseases and my instinct is also that number of deaths and the severity of the outbreaks may possibly have been, (much ?) exaggerated by the aid agencies; the real causes of many of those deaths in many cases may have been far more mundane, compounded by poor sanitation and nutrition.

    But once again we’ve all meandered happily off topic into the wild and wacky world of conspiracy theory and far away from the real and serious topic of article above; which is the Tory government effectively banning trade unions from striking and the disturbing implications of that for the future of our political democracy here in the UK.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *