Statement on the Tory Strike Act
By A Wacker and TU Group
The Workers Party of Britain supports The Trade Unions Congress’ (TUC) opposition and condemnation of the recently passed ‘Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Act 2023’. This is an anti-worker law that is clearly aimed at disarming the trade unions’ following their successes in recent years’ in winning better pay and conditions for British workers, and having grown in strength and power,
The Workers Party also backs the TUC’s naming and shaming of UK employers who call staff in to work during strike action, employers who are clearly in the arms of the capitalist elite and are dedicated to the cause of undermining the working people of our nation.
Watch Deputy Leader Andy Hudd
The Workers Party will show solidarity in a practical way, collaborate in union demonstrations in the fight back against the new government regulations and support pickets. Collective action is essential against this clear suppression of the workers’ rights. Condemnation; taking action short of a strike; and refusing to work overtime or take on additional duties are essential means of resistance. The Workers Party also encourages any non-compliance with the act undertaken by trade unions, who have the means to support members in resisting these laws of suppression.
Solidarity and sacrifice are the historical backbone of meaningful change for the working class. What is the point of a strike – and by extension, a union – if the government now gets to tell us how long we are allowed to strike for, and when we must abide by our employers and forced to work according to their will? The whole aim and significance of a strike is to oppose exploitation and fight for the interests and priority of the working-class.
The sacrifice that a strike entails and its short-term effects on key services and sectors is necessary to ensure that those services and sectors are improved for society in the long-term. Services and sectors are upheld by the workers who do their very best to ensure they thrive. It is the elites who hinder these services and sectors, by not respecting, listening or answering to the workers who keep them alive, and by their relentless pursuit of profit above all else. If those in power were on the side of the people, the working-class would have no need to strike, and key services and sectors would prosper – but this is clearly not the case, and so, strikes are imperative and will continue.
Through organisation and agitation, by exerting pressure and engaging in disruption, we spur people on to think: why are we going on strike, why are services being disrupted, why can’t my child go to school today?? Such questions will lead people to realise that it is not the workers or trade unions who are responsible for this disruption, but the very ruling class who care only for enriching themselves at the expense of the people of Britain. Such realisations are potent in shifting the status quo, and is precisely why the ruling class felt so threatened in the last few years from an impressive wave of strike action, unity and solidarity from the public – bringing this law into effect out of fear. Disruption is working, it is bringing and will continue to bring real change. We must all keep fighting, regardless of the obstacles they throw at us, and indeed we must expect the obstacles to become ever greater, this is a sign of the success and growing power of the trade union movement which has until recently sat idle, content to hope and pray for a Labour Party victory, a victory that regardless will not bring progressive change for trade unionism and the working class.
Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer and his Blairite cabinet assert that the Strikes Act shall be repealed within the first 100 days of them taking office, but actions speak louder than words. During the impactful and momentous strike wave of recent years, Labour was vehemently opposed to workers fighting for their rights and freedoms, with Starmer openly asking MPs to step back from standing side by side with striking workers.
No Party in government or opposition is on our side: their support for this law, austerity, uncontrolled mass immigration, lack of funding in public services, privatisation, low taxation for the rich, and increased military spending all showcase as such. The Labour Party have shown they are an enemy of workers.
As allies of trade unions in Great Britain, the Workers Party of Britain welcomes all working people to fight without compromise against this tyrannical law, as well as the ongoing deteriorating economic and social conditions that have now persisted for two decades. We commend and support the TUC in their efforts, and hope both they and our party can come together in the future to advocate for real change that is needed for the people of Britain beyond the big business establishment lap-dogs that are the Conservative and Labour parties.
Join the fight back against draconian anti-strike legislation
National march and rally in Cheltenham, Saturday 27 January
Our workers rights are under attack again
Join us at Montpellier Gardens, Cheltenham at 12pm on Saturday 27 January