UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Defiant union mobilisation greets Con Dems in Cardiff

UNISON Wales was the largest contingent among the thousands taking part in the Wales TUC march through Cardiff on Saturday against the vicious ConDem cuts. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-wales-12651950  This was the largest trade union demonstration in Cardiff for a generation and with the tens of trade union and protest banners and hundreds of fluttering union flags certainly the most colourful and vibrant.

The march went through the centre of Cardiff to the Wales TUC 'Protest in the Park' in Sophia Gardens pausing by the Angel Hotel, where the LibDems were holding their spring conference, to hurl abuse at the yellow Tories and pledging to do a 'Barnsley' to them at the Welsh Assembly elections on 5th May.

The 'Protest in the Park' was situated within earshot of where the millionaire public schooled elite (Tory Party) were holding their spring conference in the nearby SWALEC stadium, with George Osborne scheduled to tell his banker friends how working people would have to continue to pay the price of this capitalist crisis in order to keep him and his friends in the life styles they are accustomed to.

At the rally, Sian Wibling, Wales TUC president, welcomed the mass of protesters and praised the workers from Companies House and Remploy who led off the march and are facing hundreds of redundancies.

Wales First Minister Carwyn Jones declared that on Thursday Wales had overwhelmingly said Yes to more powers to control their own affairs and today was overwhelmingly saying No to the vicious cuts of the Con Dems in Westminster.

Len McCluskey UNITE's new general secretary got a roar of approval when he congratulated student protesters and told the Met Police "and anyone else this may apply to" to keep their hands off our children and young people.

Bronwyn McKenna UNISON assistant general secretary received a warm welcome from the rally as she declared that public sector workers should not pay the price for this crisis.

Mark Serwotka, PCS general secretary, also received a rousing reception from the crowd as his concluding comments brought an end to an historic day in Cardiff. A day that confirmed that Wales had come of age and would stand united in resistance to a Con Dem government intent on rolling back the welfare state.