Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Union Poachers Turned Gamekeepers!

UNITE North West Regional Committee adopted a motion in November for the consideration of the union's National Executive expressing concern at the number of its former trade union officers who leave the union owing to their failure to 'uphold expected trade union pronciples'.  It notes also that 'without shame [they] take up prominent positions within a short space of time with companies that our union negotiates with'.

Furthermore, it seems, that 'many of these former full time officers end up with lucrative union pensions and extremely generous pay outs'.  This North West Committee of Unite the Union feels that Unite 'should not allow former officers to use the knowledge gained of our activists or organisation' to use while working for an employer directly opposed to the interests of our union.  This Committee feels that 'legal and binding clauses must be put in place to deter such practice happening in the future.' 

Of course, this observation of 'poachers becoming gamekeepers' is not unique in the British trade union movement.  In recent years we've become increasingly aware of well paid union bosses in the British building trade who fed information on trade union activists and militants to the illegal firm of blacklisters The Consulting Association.  Earlier this month George Tapp even tried to raise this matter at a meeting of the Greater Manchester County Association of Trade Union Councils but was ruled out of order.


Alec said...

Very interesting,do you have names? I agree with you that Unite contract of Full Time Officials should have a clause in preventing this happening in future.

Why was George Tapp ruled out of order ?


bammy said...

George (Tapp) tried to raise the issue of union officials names (redacted) in the files discovered at the Consulting Assoc. I think that the chair (of the Greater Manchester County Assoc. [GMCA TUCs]) thought that it may be inappropriate to discuss at a GMCA TUC's meeting something that may be harmful to the unity of the trade unions. As you know that this refers to a particular trade union, & some of its officers, which is now merged inside Unite: many of these officials have now retired although I understand that some are still in place. George [Tapp]would have more accurate info. on the names, as I understand that there has been more evidence come to light more recently.

Alec said...

This is clearly a job for 2014,I personally and politically can see no reason to protect former Union Officials who work for the enermy . Good luck in our battles in 2014, we can make it a happy new year but only together.

Andy said...

The motion did not mention names but drew attention to something that keeps on happening - an official leaves the union, sometimes with a payout, and then pops up working in HR in the industry they used to represent. The motion came from the Construction section - for obvious reasons.