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Respect lauds UNISON's Labour boycott

In a big blow to chances of the Labour Party at the forthcoming May council elections, UNISON is refusing to fund or work for Labour.

india Updated: Mar 31, 2006 19:25 IST
UK Bureau

In a big blow to chances of the Labour Party at the forthcoming May council elections, UNISON, the largest union in Europe, is refusing to fund or work for Labour.

UNISON's Labour Link said: "In the circumstances of the union taking national industrial action against the Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott... it is felt that it is not  appropriate or politically sensible to be organising, on one hand, for industrial action by the union while sending out letters and leaflets to many of the same members asking them to vote Labour.

"The decision has been taken to suspend our election campaigning work for Labour in the May elections while the industrial action is going on...This is a decision that affects our work for Labour's election campaign in May nationally and locally."

Galloway's party Respect's national secretary John Rees said, "UNISON are absolutely right not  to fund the party that is attacking their members. It was sickening to watch (Chancellor) Gordon Brown crossing the picket line when millions were on strike to defend their pensions.

"I hope every union member will choose to vote for Respect on 4th May because we back the unions 100 per cent in their fight with the government to retain their pension rights."