Sunday, September 05, 2010

Torygraph and Tax Avoiders Alliance “twaddle” about unions

What a lot of old twaddle from the Torygraph and the Tax Avoiders’ Alliance about “millions” being (so called) wasted on time off for trade union stewards and safety reps to represent their members.

So every time a rep goes to a meeting with a member or sits down with management to sort out local problems - this is somehow “fund (ing) the activities of the union barons”? How silly.

So what exactly are these “Big Society” Tories clones proposing should happen instead?

a. Workers facing discipline or sickness hearings should be banned from having trade union colleague representing them?
b. safety reps should not be allowed to carry out workplace inspections or investigate accidents ?
c. organisations should not consult elected staff representatives on pay, proposed redundancies or changes to terms and conditions?

This is all politically motivated stuff and nonsense and I suppose in one way we should expect such “tic for tat” attacks on the unions due to our support for Labour. Frankly, I would have thought that they could have come out with something just a little more intelligent to have a go at us.

If you are thinking about efficiency I would suggest the Tories and their allies look into the number of HR personnel in large organisations (and wages paid to the HR directors!) compared to the facility time offered to trade union reps?

The only really sensible quote in the Torygraph article is from UNISON General Secretary Dave Prentis about the role of union reps "Far from causing industrial strife, paid facility time has contributed to the lowest levels of strikes on record. In short – trade union facility time makes good business sense."

The TUC blog “Stronger unions” reports on the Tax Avoiders that “The voice of employers is also absent from the report – quite odd given that I assume that the TPA would regard itself as a friend of employers. Is this because only last year the CBI joined with the TUC and BIS to publish a report – Reps in Action – on the role of union reps and stated that it;

Believes that modern [union] representatives have a lot to give their fellow employees and to the organisations that employ them”

The Ultra right wing “teenage scribblers” of the Torygraph and the Tax Avoiders' Alliance have (self evidently) no idea whatsoever of industrial relations in the real world.

UNISONactive and Socialist Unity have sensible posts on this as well. Caption from here

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