Kick out the yellow trade union leaders

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Two gem miners working knee deep in water with a sieve – are paid no wages and get only meals
Two gem miners working knee deep in water with a sieve – are paid no wages and get only meals

THE GATE GOURMET bosses were cock-a-hoop yesterday, and no wonder – after the leader of the TUC, Barber, and the leaders of the TGWU agreed to 140 compulsory redundancies and to just 400 of the 710 locked-out workers returning to work, and to the company ‘survival plan’ which involves big changes in the terms and conditions of service that workers will be returning to.

Nobody knows who the 140 workers are that are to be fired. The threat of the axe is hanging over every locked-out worker like a huge nightmare, by kind permission of the TUC leader Barber and the leaders of the TGWU.

Both leaderships helped to draw up the criteria for selecting those who are to be compulsorily sacked. A TGWU official explained to the media on Wednesday that the 144 to be sacked ‘will be chosen by objective criteria based on measurable criteria, disciplinary records and attendance etc.’

With Barber, Woodley and Gold around, Gate Gourmet do not need a personnel officer, they have the TUC and TGWU leaders doing the job for them, helping to select those that are to be sacked.

This is yellow trade unionism in action, betraying and stabbing members in the back, and doing service for bosses who only a few weeks ago they were calling ‘bandit capitalists’.

Even reformist union leaders have insisted, up till now, that redundancies must be ‘voluntary’, and have opposed compulsory sackings – but not Barber, Woodley and Gold. And Gate Gourmet are grateful for the services carried out by these traitors to the working class, just weeks after the TUC Congress pledged 100 per cent support to the Gate Gourmet locked-out workers.

In a press statement on the their website on September 28, Gate Gourmet gushed out its gratitude and enthusiasm for its new-found friends. The press statement said: ‘Gate Gourmet London (Heathrow) is delighted to report that the Transport and General Workers’ Union has finally agreed to the proposal put forward by the company last month to resolve the current labour dispute, and to an earlier proposal to change working practices agreed in June. . . Gate Gourmet thanks Brendan Gold for agreeing to the proposals, and Brendan Barber for his unwavering support and assistance throughout the negotiation process. We look forward to continuing to strengthen our newfound relationship with the union at Heathrow.’

The bandit capitalists are thankful to both Gold and Barber for their ‘unwavering’ betrayal of the workers!

No wonder Gate Gourmet looks forward to further collaboration with its new-found friends at Heathrow.

The working class, however, will be very angry at this commendation of shame that the treacherous trade union leaders have received from the ‘bandit capitalists’. There is not the slightest doubt that bosses all over the country will follow the path of provocation and banditry blazed by Gate Gourmet, relying on the trade union bureaucracy as a whole to do the same job for them as Woodley, Gold and Barber did for the Gate Gourmet bosses.

The membership of the TGWU and all of the affiliated TUC trade unions must now move into action.

They must demand that the boss loving trio of union leaders are sacked, that the mass sackings deal that they negotiated is ripped up and that the whole of the trade union movement honours the resolution carried unanimously at the TUC Congress for 100 per cent support for the Gate Gourmet workers.

This action must be carried out at once. It is the only way to defend the jobs of millions of workers in Britain.