Friday, December 18, 2009

British Airways Dirty Tricks department

The British Airways dirty tricks department have won a victory for every bullying employer and few are more prone to bullying than our employers. Every action we take against SATS, over workload or the proposed attack on teachers' pensions runs the risk of being declared illegal on one technicality or another.

On the decision of one judge and at the behest of British Airways bosses, the workers of Britain and their trade unions have been told that the democratic right to strike has been cancelled.

This "disgraceful legal judgment" as the union Unite correctly called it, makes voting in any union ballot almost irrelevant if it does not suit the wishes of the bosses and their friends in the judiciary. Any strike can be declared 'illegal'.

Every commentator has admitted that the so-called ballot irregularities would not have made a blind bit of difference to the outcome of the strike ballot. Unless the whole trade union movement faces up to what is required then the unions face the danger of being put back in legal terms to the infamous Taff Vale judgment of 1906 which made unions liable for commercial damages following the effect of any strikes they organised.

It was the Taff Vale judgement which convinced the trade unions that they need a political voice. That is something what is laughingly called "the Labour Party" will not provide. We need a new workers' party.


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