Hicks, the candidate standing on a platform of greater democracy in the
‘UNITE’ union and for a more militant policy in defense of jobs and
conditions, spoke at the Amicus section of ‘UNITE The Union’ in
Northampton on Saturday.
J Hicks who is a grass roots activist and one of whose main planks is
the regular election of all union officials on an average members pay is
opposed by the official machinery of the union as he is seen as a
threat to established unelected officials and their cosy relationship to
the Labour Party.
Jerry believes the emphasis of the union should be on
supporting employees defending their conditions and in the union using
its full strength in local and national disputes rather than relying on
the offices of MPs and governments who have for decades taken a pro
employer stand and an anti workers and anti union line. He supported the
recent unofficial national construction sites dispute and argues that
in the British Airways dispute the union should call out all its members
at the company – not just the flight staff, in order to stop the
reduction in workers conditions and bring a speedy end in the workers
interests. He condemned the fact that the Labour Party had done nothing
in over a decade to repeal the vicious Thatcherite anti union laws and
believes that in recent disputes that could easily have been won the law
should have been broken to win those disputes.
Jerry Hicks election would mark a massive break from the timid unionism
of the last decades and herald a shake up in UK industrial relations.
His election would see unions and workers resisting, with union backing,
the present race to the bottom in terms of pay and conditions that is
being forced upon workers by employers around the country.
The election is to be held in the next few weeks and ballot papers will
be out to members soon. Dave Green and Phill Watts, officers of the
local branch, called for support for a change in the way UNITE is run,
for a fighting union to defend employees interests as they suffer the
ravages of the economic crisis and for a big vote for Jerry Hicks to
change the face and direction of the UK’s largest union.
Northampton Amicus/Unite Branch Press statement.
Phil Watts Secretary 07743791180
Dave Green Chair 01604 752588