3 November 2011

Did Dave Prentis really admit this?

The Evening Standard this afternoon carried a quote in its print edition from UNISON General Secretary, Dave Prentis, that 'we had worked hard to get our members to vote yes to strike action'. But sadly I cannot find it online.

Assuming I remembered it correctly this is a revealing admission. It shows the current trade union leadership is not interested in properly representing their members - instead they want to pursue a political vendetta against the government. Prentis and his well paid (and well pensioned) cronies among trade union leaders are very keen to repeat the mantra of 'ideologically driven' cuts. But it is clear there's only one side in this dispute being ideological - and that is the trade unions.

The sad thing is that ordinary trade union members are being appallingly badly served by their leaders ideological and political posturing.


  1. Dan,

    I rather suspect you misunderstand the terms Dave Prentis used.(If indeed the quote is real) I hold no torch for Dave Prentis and Unison, as those that know me well know. However, rather than it being an expression of a Trade Union dinosaur, cynically manipulating the union members. What is almost certainly being referred to here, is the herculean effort that all of the Unions have been making to get their membership lists updated to the state where employers cannot use injunctions to stymie any industial actions under the rather draconian requirements for calling a legal dispute.

    The burdens of accurracy required are such, that it is the equivalent of rather than just being on the electoral roll at a known address in parliamentary elections etc. it is also required to know which room and in which chair the registrant usually sits before a legal ballot can be cast. And, if this information is not forthcoming the whole ballot could be declared invalid!.

    So to get a turnout on a postal ballot and a vote for strike action which is almost the same as the total vote for the Tories at the last election, is not a trivial achievement and is I think, the "hard work" being referred to.


    Dave Eastham

  2. Thanks for your comment - I'm not entirle sure I understand the bit about the Tories - given Unison issued 1.1 million ballot papers and in 2010 the Tories got 10 million votes.

    I'm not convinced that as a rule employers (with the possible exception of BA) use legal injunctions to stymie ballots - there's clear legislation on industrial action that hasn't been touched by either Labout or the coalition.