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United Left

Open letter to Socialist Party supporters in Unite

Comrades,

This Coalition government has been responsible for attacks on our class that go far beyond anything Thatcher would have dreamed of. Their austerity policies have been targeted on the poor and vulnerable in our society. They have lined the pockets of their Hedge Fund backers and speculators in the City with billions of public money. They have been responsible for attacks on the organised labour movement and have been open in their support for even more draconian legislation if re-elected. New proposed laws which would make effective trade union action virtually illegal-The Tories are not campaigning in this election as the Hug- A-Hoodie, party that can be trusted with the NHS, they are back as The Nasty Party fighting on a class war programme.

While Unite policy is to support Labour, in fact to do all we can to elect a Labour Government, your organisation has decided to stand candidates in the forthcoming general election. Of course that is your right; we are a trade union not a political party, we do not have any disciplinary means to force you to support union policy and rightly so.

Within the UL there is then a clear political difference; on the one hand the majority, working for a Labour victory who are also intent on developing the left within the Party and your goal, of standing candidates in the election as part of becoming the political alternative to Labour. In our view a big claim for some 1,000-2,000 people, whose track record in elections is derisory.

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Reply from Socialist Party to Open Letter from leading Unite lay members

Socialist Party members in Unite have received an open letter from leading members of Unite who are in United Left (UL), in which Socialist Party members are also organised.

In the run-up to the General Election, the letter is appealing to socialists not to stand widely in the election but “to do all we can to elect a Labour Government”. In reality, this is an appeal to support a government that would be, at best, austerity-lite and a continuation of the crisis that faces working-class people. This prospect has led to a fracturing of politics.

Firstly, it is not just the Socialist Party that is standing in May’s polls, which also include elections in local authorities. We are part of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC) that also comprises the RMT in an official capacity, representing its 80,000 members and other leading trade unionists from PCS, Unite, NUT and the POA as well as other socialist organisations and individuals. Its federal structure means that whoever stands for TUSC has to be agreed by democratic discussion by the different constituent parts of what is a coalition. It is in these collective interests that determine the decision to stand or not.

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Nominate Suzanne Muna for London and Eastern Territorial representative on the Unite Executive Council

As Branch Secretary of the multi-employer Unite Housing Workers branch, Suzanne been involved in creating a real organising and fighting base. This has been evident in the recent high profile disputes which emerged at One Housing Group (0HG), The Homes and Communities Agency, Equinox, Look Ahead, Peabody, and St MungosBroadway over pay and conditions, and the ‘I’m Bryan’ campaign to defend a sacked representative at OHG. Suzanne has also been instrumental in initiating strategic campaigns to end the toxic effect on workers of the endless merry-go-round of housing and social care service transfers.

If elected, Suzanne is committed to building on Unite’s proud track record of supporting workers in struggle, particularly in the London and Eastern Region. This includes the NHS campaigns, eliminate blacklisting in construction. greater co-ordination of industrial action, scrapping the anti-union laws, and defending workers across the region, including in local government, Heathrow airport, the hotel sector and DP World ports, and others. She is opposed to all cuts imposed by national government and local councils, and committed to fighting to give Unite members a stronger and transparent political voice in accordance with the policies of the UL.

If you have a branch meeting before 1 April, seek the branch's nomination for Suzanne Muna. If there is no branch meeting before this date, please seek the branch committee's endorsement and email this to Suzanne at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Branch: Unite Housing Workers Branch LE1111.
Membership No.:15692878.
Contact: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Download and print off nomination leaflet here.

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