Mick Lynch has vowed the RMT union will refuse to comply and “be meek” in its response to the government’s authoritarian anti-strike legislation.
RMT’s general secretary issued the warning during a TUC fringe meeting organised by the Institute of Employment Rights (IER) and the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom in Liverpool on Sunday.
Urging unions to stand up to the recently passed Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Act, Mr Lynch warned that meek compliance is “the road to oblivion for this movement.”
TUC Congress unanimously backed a motion of non-compliance and non-cooperation with the legislation’s requirements for minimum service levels earlier today.
Under the Bill, which became law in July, public-sector workers could be forced to effectively break their own strikes to ensure that service levels are met.
Those who do not comply could find themselves sacked, while unions could be sued to the point of bankruptcy.
“No trade union should ever be forced to tell anybody if you’ve got a righteous, elected, democratic dispute, that you cannot stand with each other,” said Aslef’s general secretary Mick Whelan.
To cheers from the crowd, newly appointed National Education Union (NEU) general secretary Daniel Kebede vowed to fight back the moment he sees the law implemented on his members.
“Should any one of the NEU members get sacked, the next time we inevitably take national strike action, we will close that school until they are reinstated,” he said.
This article was first published in the Morning Star