On the 16th of October 2015, in a Huffington Post blog, Len McCluskey talked about a letter he wrote to David Cameron, most of which I would generally agree with. The Trade Union reforms that David Cameron has proposed should be vigorously challenged. However, Mr McCluskey went on to state the following:-
‘…as the devolved administrations say that they want nothing to do with it, viewing this bill as an attack on the rights of the people they represent, it becomes all too clear that English workers will be the ones to feel the brunt of these changes. How ironic – promised by this government that they will be blessed by English laws for English voters, English workers are to be rendered by the Tories not just the easiest to exploit in the EU but the poorest protected on these isles.‘
That statement is astonishing as it comes from a man who actively opposes the establishment of an English Trade Union Congress, despite there being an independent Scottish, Welsh and Irish TUC. This is a man who has also been actively opposed to the creation of an English government even though Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland already have their own.
This same man also refuses to discuss the urgently needed creation of an English Labour party with an English manifesto. I know this from firsthand experience as he has turned his back on me personally on two separate occasions, telling me to ‘F*** OFF’ when I asked him about the need for proper representation for England.
If his words are to have any meaning then he must put action behind his apparent view that ‘English workers will be the ones to feel the brunt of these changes’. As things are the Conservatives have produced an English manifesto whilst Labour hasn’t – a situation that should surely be corrected. Len McCluskey could be the one to change that. He should call for the formation of an English Labour Party and for Labour to create an English manifesto so that their English policies can be clearly identified before they are implemented.
I am pleased that he has finally accepted that the devolved governments in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have clear differences in policy agendas and that English Workers are currently disadvantaged. It is a huge step forward. However, simply realising how bad the situation is for English Workers doesn’t make a lot of difference if you don’t attempt to correct the situation.
So Mr McCluskey, as the General Secretary of UNITE, I ask you to come and join the English Trade Union Congress and join the Workers of England Union campaign for Labour to establish an English Labour Party with its own manifesto for England – after all, he knows that there are separate Labour Parties for Wales and Scotland. If he does call for an English Labour party manifesto I will know that he is serious. If he doesn’t then he will be just another member of that group who are breath–takingly hypocritical, those who don’t really care about the people who work in England but claim to speak for the whole UK.
The ball is in your court Mr McCluskey, The Workers of England Union gives you 7 days to reply!!