Tag Archives: Trade Union Bill

Green Party unanimously opposes Trade Union Act and calls for new rights for unions to access workplaces

GPTU Co-Chair Clare Keogh moves GPTU’s motion on a statutory right of access to workplaces for Trade Unions

Greens have unanimously backed proposals to stand against the Conservatives’ Trade Union Act and to give Trade Unions new rights to access workplaces, at their Autumn Conference in Birmingham.

The proposals, put forward by the Green Party Trade Union Group (GPTU), aim to combat increasing exploitation of workers. They come after efforts by outgoing Leader Natalie Bennett and new co-Leader Jonathan Bartley to draw attention to abuses of workers at firms such as Deliveroo.

The first successful proposal pledges to join in direct action against the Trade Union Act as it comes into force, a move first called for by Green Party MP and co-Leader Caroline Lucas, whilst the second calls for a new statutory right of access for Trade Unions to enter unorganised workplaces and speak to workers.

Kieron Merrett, the Green Party’s Trade Union Liaison Officer, said:

“In the Green Party, we know that the best way to stop abuse and exploitation in the workplace is to enable workers to get organised in Trade Unions, so they can make their own claims and campaign for their own improvements in pay and conditions.

“But legislation in the UK is infamously restrictive, making it harder for Trade Unions to access the most vulnerable workers. That’s why the Green Party has pledged to join in direct action against the Trade Union Act as it comes into force, and to call for new rights for Trade Union representatives to access workplaces and organise the most vulnerable workers.

“The Green Party has confirmed that, to promote equality and protect workers, we need to support the Trade Union Movement and enable it to do what it does best.”

GPTU committee member Paul Valentine moves GPTU’s motion on opposition to the Conservatives’ Trade Union Act

Clare Keogh, Co-Chair of the Green Party Trade Union Group, said:

“Many workers are now employed in new types of workplaces without any history of unionisation – particularly young workers and migrants. It’s no coincidence that these are the workplaces where the worst abuses are taking place.

“To put a stop to this, legislation and government action simply aren’t enough – workers must be organised in Trade Unions. It’s much more difficult to undo unionisation in the workplace than it is to repeal legislation in Parliament.

“I’m delighted that the Green Party has given unanimous support to our proposals. Not only do Greens fully support the Trade Union movement, but there are also many active Trade Unionists in our party. We are the party for working people!”

Autumn Conference newsletter

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Dear GPTU member,

Autumn Conference is upon us! If you’re going to be in Birmingham this weekend, look out for GPTU and the various activities we’ve got planned.


GPTU motions to Autumn Conference

GPTU has two motions at Green Party Conference. These are on Opposing the Conservatives’ Trade Union Act (numbered C1 in the Final Agenda) and Statutory Access to Workplaces for Trade Unions (numbered C5).

Read more about GPTU’s motions C1 and C5 and why Greens should support them at Autumn Conference:

We need the support of all Green Trade Unionists to get these motions passed! Here’s what you can do to support:

  • Come to the workshops and bring your comrades! These are on FRIDAY 2nd September, 14:45-16:00, in room WG05. This is your chance to debate the motions in more detail and show your support.
  • Motion C1 (Trade Union Act) will be debated in plenary on SATURDAY, immediately after Deputy Leader’s speech at 10:30. Come along to voice your support or simply vote in favour of the motion!
  • The plenary debate on C5 (Access to workplaces) may be on SATURDAY during the 10:30-12:30 session after Deputy Leader’s speech, or on SUNDAY during the 10:30-1200 session. Come along to support the motion!


Competition for GPTU members!

We’ll be running a competition for all GPTU members – including anyone who joins up during Conference. Exclusive prize to be won! To enter the competition, we’ll be asking GPTU members to show their support for the Trade Union Movement and have their picture shared on social media as a Green Trade Unionist. We want the world to see just how many committed Trade Unionists there are at Green Party Conference!

We’ll have brand new GPTU badges on sale – or you can get one free badge for participating in the competition.

Come along and speak to us at the GPTU stall if you’d like to get more information on anything we’re doing or just want to get more involved.


GPTU meeting for all members – FRIDAY 2nd Sep, 18:30, Seminar Room

GPTU’s meeting for all members will be held on Friday 2nd Sep at 18:30 in the Seminar Room. We will be debating GPTU’s campaigning over the next few months and how we can involve local parties across the country.

If you’d like to meet the GPTU committee, get involved, or simply hear about what’s going on, now is your chance! If your Trade Union has an upcoming dispute that you’d like GPTU to support, please come along and let us know. We’ll be bringing along wine and nibbles for those who come along.

You can join the meeting via Google Hangouts if you’re not attending Conference. Get in touch with us to find out the details.


We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

In solidarity,
GPTU committee

Green Trade Unionists hail RMT’s “Trade Union Bill-busting” mandate for industrial action

2174303605The Green Party Trade Union Group (GPTU) has hailed RMT’s cast-iron mandate for industrial action by conductors on Southern Rail, which achieved over 90% “yes” vote and over 80% turnout.

RMT’s ballot busts through all the new  restrictions that the Tory Government has threatened to impose via its Trade Union Bill

The Tory Government is attempting, with its Trade Union Bill, to impose new restrictions on the right to strike. They include a new minimum 40% turnout for strike ballots to be valid. In addition, in the public sector, at least 50% of those eligible to vote must vote “yes” for strike action to be permitted.

The RMT’s ballot soared over these potential hurdles by a wide margin, demonstrating that industrial action can and will continue despite the Tories’ draconian new rules.

RMT members will now be on discontinuous strike, with the first strike date scheduled for next week (Tuesday, 26th April, from 11am).

Kieron Merrett, GPTU secretary, said, “This Trade Union Bill-busting result is yet another huge strike mandate from RMT members – and it’s a slap in the face for the Tory Government which is attempting to suppress legitimate, democratic industrial action.

Congratulations to RMT train conductors on Southern Rail who voted “yes.” We look forward to giving them our full support during their strike.

The Green Party has been a staunch opponent of the Tories’ “draconian” Trade Union Bill.

Caroline Lucas, the Green Party’s RMT-backed MP, said:

The Trade Union Bill represents a savage and vindictive assault on UK employment rights – hitting at the heart of protections enshrined in international conventions. For a Government elected by only 24% of eligible voters to propose a 40% ‘yes’ threshold for public sector strikes reeks of hypocrisy.

I’ll be working with MPs from across the political parties in fighting this draconian piece of legislation as it passes through Parliament. If the Bill is passed into law, I would be prepared to join trade unionists and others in taking non-violent direct action to resist it.