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

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Tories & Trade Union Political Funds - a little bit of knowledge is dangerous

As predicted following Ed Miliband's unnecessary concession about limiting collective union funding of the Labour Party (even though we are affiliated as an organisation), the Tory attack dogs are now homing in on the political fund contributions of individual union members.

Tory MP Priti Patel has launched a broadside against UNISON which betrays her ignorance of the union's political fund rules (which she quotes selectively), the transparent internal processes underpinning the operation of the rules which ensure member choice and, most importantly, the 10-yearly statutory political fund review ballots - in which all members vote on the very existence of the political fund AND endorse the political fund model rules: http://conservativehome.blogs.com/platform/2012/04/priti-patel.html

Shamefully, some New Labour figures such as former General Secretary Peter Watt have come out in support of the position being advanced by the Tories - which has the sole aim of choking off financial support for Labour: http://labour-uncut.co.uk/2012/04/16/ed%e2%80%99s-funding-proposals-nearly-but-not-quite/

It is therefore critical that a strong case is made that trade unions, as voluntary member organisations, should have the freedom to determine our own rules, our own political affiliations and our own internal processes.