Free Our Unions motion for Labour party conference

The pandemic, in which many workers have needed to take fast, decisive action to guarantee safety for themselves, their loved ones, and the wider community, without going through an arduous bureaucratic process, has underscored the need to scrap all anti-strike laws. So does the wave of job cuts and attacks on terms and conditions (e.g., “fire and rehire”).

Other anti-strike laws, such as the ban on workers striking in solidarity with other workers, and on striking over political issues, are also an affront to democracy and a brake on democratic action. They prevent workers from taking action directly over issues such as climate change or racism.

Conference denounces the Tories’ plan to impose new restrictions on transport workers through a “minimum service requirement”. It seems likely they will extend this to other groups of key workers.

Conference notes TUC Congress 2020 agreed to “organise a special conference… on opposing the anti-union laws” and a national demonstration. The party should encourage CLPs to support and get involved in these when they become possible.

Conference reaffirms the party’s opposition to all anti-union and anti-strike legislation, its commitment to repealing all such laws when next in government, and to legislating to enshrine workers’ rights to, as per TUC policy: “join, recruit to, and be represented by an independent union; strike/take industrial action by a process, at a time, and for demands of their own choosing, including in solidarity with any other workers, and for broader social and political goals; and picket freely”. (249 words)

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