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UNITE Head Office, Theobalds Road, London

Report by Martin Mayer, Executive Council member for Passenger Transport

Grangemouth dispute – analysis and solidarity support

• UNITE takes on the battle to save the NHS

• UNITE Executive agrees response to Collins Review

• Solidarity support to London students demo

• UNITE membership records real growth at end of 2013

• PCS exploratory talks update

• Executive Council elections – additional BAEM seats agreed

• Standing ovation for Nelson Mandela in recognition of his life's achievements

Grangemouth Ineos dispute

Len McCluskey gave a full account of the struggle of our 800 UNITE members at the Ineos oil refinery and petrochemical works at Grangemouth. In his view this was Ineos' billionaire majority shareholder Jim Ratcliffe "getting his own back" after a stunning victory of our members back in 2008. First the company attacked our convenor Stevie Deans, provoking our members to ballot for strike action in his defence. Then he presented a non-negotiable package of concessions and attacks on the union, threatening to close the site if these were not agreed unconditionally. He held not only the workforce to ransom but also the Scottish Government, the British Government - and BP who depend on Grangemouth as their outlet for North Sea oil. The company only attended ACAS under pressure from the Government but were clearly not interested in a deal. They walked out giving a 3-day ultimatum to accept their conditions or face closure. When Jim Ratcliffe called in the liquidators and placed the refinery on "cold shutdown" (normally regarded as permanent closure) it was the members themselves who decided to accept the company's terms and save the plant and their jobs.

The right wing press were hysterical in their condemnation of UNITE for bringing the plant to the brink of closure - and jumped with glee at UNITE's climb-down and acceptance of Ineos' terms. The real lesson however is that such important strategic assets as Grangemouth (which accounts for 12% of Scotland's GDP) should never have been allowed to fall into the hands of a private equity billionaire bully boy who is not even accountable to a board of directors. A stronger case for national ownership and control could not be more clear. Jim Ratcliffe secured £9M from the Scottish Government and £120M overall in grants and loans from the public purse without any scrutiny whatsoever of Ineos' opaque accounts and tax avoidance as the politicians scrambled to raise the cash to meet his demands.

Len McCluskey congratulated the UNITE membership for their courageous fight - and for making the decision to accept the deal to keep the plant open when they had no other choice. They live on to fight another day, and keep their jobs no matter the cost. He was critical of the ultra-left who accused UNITE of "selling out" and dismissed the wild claims that an occupation of the plant or a mass mobilisation of other workers could have been possible. The UNITE workforce did in fact consider occupation but immediately ruled it out on safety and security grounds alone.

Our members have had to accept not only a three-year pay freeze, attacks on their conditions and a major assault on their pensions, but also a three-year strike free agreement and the withdrawal of union facility time. The atmosphere inside the plant is extremely hostile. With Stevie Deans now gone, the pressure falls on plant convenor Mark Lyon Executive Council member for Chemicals and PPT who faces blatantly anti-union posturing by managers as negotiations continue to implement the package. It was learned that a significant number of highly skilled technicians - UNITE members - have left in disgust leaving serious staff shortages on safety critical functions on the site. There is no way this plant can be run safely and efficiently without mutual cooperation and trust between the Company and the workforce and trade union.

Len McCluskey reported that due to his concern at the complete breakdown in the relationship between UNITE and the company, he has taken the unusual step of designating Jim Mowatt Education Director as National Officer with responsibility for Ineos. Jim Mowatt has been National Secretary for this industrial sector in TGWU days and had a good working relationship with the plant in those days. Apparently the company have indicated it welcomes this news.

Finally Len McCluskey dismissed the Tory government's politically charged announcement that they would set up a public inquiry into UNITE's behaviour during the Ineos dispute, headed by barrister Bruce Carr QC who has defended companies like British Airways in injunctions against unions. Apparently the Government is furious at our silent and totally legal protests outside director's homes, and are clearly trying to maintain propaganda momentum linking UNITE "bully boys" to Ed Miliband and the Labour Party right through to the next election. The entire TUC General Council has agreed to veto the invitation for a senior trade unionist to sit on this inquiry, which may scupper the inquiry getting off the ground.

Saving our NHS

Some initial ideas are being explored to step up UNITE's fightback to save our NHS - which is being privatised at a pace. A possible tactic might be to lead local community campaigns wherever a section of the NHS comes up for tender, using research to expose the failures of privatisation elsewhere. The UNITE membership in the Health Sector are already calling for a branch levy to support selective strikes to defend jobs and conditions as well as oppose privatisation. The General Secretary said he would need to look at these plans and be sure they were workable before giving the go-ahead.

Political report

After a lengthy and in-depth debate, UNITE Executive Council agreed its response to the Collins Review into the relationship between the trade unions and the Labour Party. This follows Ed Miliband’s ill-advised statement at the height of the crisis around Falkirk that the relationship had to change. UNITE response (see Appendix I) argues for a retention of the collective affiliation as now with the current structure of voting and seats, but a new approach to encourage individual participation of trade unionists within the Labour Party structures. Many of us had expected that a joint single response from the trade unions via TULO would have been forthcoming but this was not so, hence UNITE submitting its own response. The deadline for response is 24th December and we now await Lord Collins' recommendations which will go before a one day conference on 1st March 2014. It is likely that a special UNITE Executive will be called in February to consider the proposals.

Jennie Formby UNITE Political Director reported that the reselection process in Falkirk has now been completed and the successful candidate is Karen Whiteside, a USDAW official. Elsewhere parliamentary selections are proceeding well with a number of seats secured by UNITE candidates or candidates supported by UNITE.

UNITE is preparing to campaign to support Labour candidates in the 2014 European elections. Race and immigration as well as anti-European sentiment are likely to be pushed by the right wing media. It is our job to present a positive vision of the type of European Union we want to build. With the EU taking increasingly neo-liberal stances on privatisation, austerity and workers rights, it will not be wise to come out with the same mantra that Europe is a haven for workers rights compared to the UK.

The Political dept has been working well with UNITE Labour MPs particularly over the Lobbying Bill ( which seeks to limit political campaigning by trade unions and charities whilst leaving big business lobbying untouched) and the Immigration Bill (which panders to racist sentiment by requiring tenants and patients to prove their legal right to stay in Britain). Similarly UNITE is trying to improve its links with Labour Councillors although tensions are running high in some Councils due to UNITE's opposition to austerity spending cuts. We are currently supporting Kevin Bennett in North West region who has been treated appallingly by the Labour Group for speaking out against the cuts.

UNITE organised and led the recent national anti-fascist march in Liverpool which was attended by over 7000 people and confirmed UNITE as the leading anti-fascist union in the country.

There is serious concern over the actions of Hull City Council which is Labour controlled and is attempting to push through swingeing cuts to our members' pay and conditions. UNITE has been researching an alternative strategy to place before the Council to avoid the need for such cuts.

Solidarity with London students marching against education cuts

Tony Woodhouse spoke out against the heavy-handed policing of the London students demonstration which passed close to UNITE House. 41 students were arrested and a student leader was taken away from his home after a dawn raid. It was unanimously agreed to send a statement in support. Some Executive Council members went outside to applaud the demonstrators as they marched past calling out the support of UNITE Executive Council. This was very warmly received by the students.

Organising report

Tony Woodley steps down as Executive Officer for Organising at the end of 2013 so this was his last Executive Council meeting. The position has passed to Sharon Graham. A reception was held to mark Tony's retirement in UNITE House on the first evening of the week. Tony will continue to act for the Union as a lead advocate for the Miami Five, and may assist from time to time in the automotive sector where he has considerable experience.

Steady progress is being made on the 100% campaign with targets being met and the National Organising increasingly withdrawing back from this work as it becomes embedded in the Regions. Plans are being drawn up to commence national sectoral organising in nine key areas of the economy where UNITE can and does have strong leverage.

The dept has been assisting the London and Eastern Region in a struggle to achieve union recognition at DP World's Thames Gateway. It was reported that following weeks of sustained pressure on the Company there has been an invitation to talks.

Membership report

Good work has been going on with the clean-up and update UNITE's membership records. A recent task has been to identify workplaces by Region and Sector. To date we have 98,214 workplaces of which only 1,439 have still be identified.

Membership growth albeit small has been sustained for 3 consecutive months figures at the end of 2013 e.g. (this figure includes 205,544 retired members)

Total membership end of September 2013 1,426,323 Total membership end of October 2013 1,429,604 Total membership end of November 2013 1,432,133

This is very encouraging and proves that even in these difficult times when jobs are being lost we can achieve positive membership growth if we adopt the right strategy.

The five largest industrial sectors are as follows (end of November 2013 figures)

General Engineering Manufacturing and Services 105,198 Finance and Legal 101,318 Health 98,884 Passenger Transport 94,394 Food Drink and Tobacco 87,556

PCS exploratory talks

Len McCluskey reported that talks had commenced with PCS to see if there were any obstacles to forging ahead with a merger. It was clarified that this would not be a merger technically but a transfer of engagements which will mean a minimum of disruption to UNITE's structures. It was felt that industrially they could form a new Civil Service industrial sector within UNITE quite easily. There is no doubt that politically PCS is on a similar wavelength culturally to UNITE in that it shares our conviction that the austerity cuts are not necessary and should be resisted, but it does not affiliate to the Labour Party and has supported TUSC candidates. However the talks have still not covered the finances of PCS which has only just begun to be discussed. Therefore it was agreed to continue the exploratory talks with a final report back in March.

UNITE constitutional matters

Executive Council

Council considered proposals for achieving proportionality for BAEM members on UNITE's new 59 seat Executive Council to be elected in Spring 2014. Proportionality by Rule would require 6 BAEM-designated seats, but the current proposal would only provide 3 (National BAEM; Passenger Transport; and London and Eastern). It was agreed (with 5 votes against) to create 3 additional BAEM seats in those constituencies which had the next highest proportion of BAEM membership. This was established to be West Midlands Region, Food Drink and Tobacco and Civil Air Transport. This will bring the total number of seats in the new Executive Council to 62.

Council passed a motion agreeing that Branches may use branch funds to support candidates in the Executive Council election on condition they have formally nominated that candidate(s) and the nomination has been accepted.

Policy Conference

Branches and constitutional committees have been invited to submit motions for inclusion on the agenda for the conference; the deadline for submission is 14th February 2014. As information about the timetable did not arrive in time for some RISC meetings, it was agreed that the administration would write to Regional Secretaries to advise them that they should call special meetings of RISCs within the timescale allowed in order that they could submit a motion if they wished to.

A paper setting out the number and distribution of delegations by region and sector was agreed and the content will be communicated to the relevant officers (see Appendix II)

UNITE Officers and Staff

Officer appointments

the following positions were ratified following interview and selection by Executive appointment panels: National Officer (RTCLRD) - Matt Draper National Officer (Passenger Service) - Robert Morton National Officer (Health Sector)- Barrie Brown Regional Officer (Gibraltar) - Gillian Birkett Regional Officer(North West) - Kenny Rowe

Achieving positive representation of women and BAEM in officer appointments

Council considered initial drafts on a process to encourage and develop female and BAEM members to take up UNITE RIO positions. It is recognised that that our RIO officer base is disproportionately white and male and this must be reversed.

UNITE pay negotiations

Council endorsed Len McCluskey's recommendation that an offer be made to all officers and staff of 2.4% pay increase for 2014.

Finance report

Ed Sabisky, Director of Finance & Operations, reported that UNITE's financial results for the first three Quarters of 2013 were in line with the outlook for the year as a whole. The Union is currently in the “calm” between two financial storms; we have weathered the storm of the last pension valuation and cut non front line costs to a level where the £12.1 million annual pension deficit reduction contributions can be met out of operating income. We have yet to see the impact of the second storm – the loss of legal income – which is about to hit. This income will largely disappear over the next few years as a consequence of the already implemented so-called Jackson legislation. The need to keep spending on non front line costs in check as well as the necessity of finding further savings is clear.

Total Income amounted to £122.6 million in the 1st Nine Months of 2013, up £3.6 million versus the same period a year ago. Within this total, all categories of Income – Contribution Income, Driver Care Income, Legal Income and Affinity Income – were up versus the prior year. Total Recurring Expenditure was £104.4 million over the same period was £3.3 million less than last year. Employment Costs excluding Organising fell by £2.8 million in the 1st Nine Months versus the same period a year ago and IT costs showed a £1.2 million decline. On the negative side, the costs of the GS and replacement Executive Council member election increased costs versus 2012.

As a consequence, Unite recorded a surplus before Investment Income and Non-Recurring Items of £18.2 million in the 1st Nine Months of 2013 – an improvement of £6.9 million versus the 1st Nine Months of 2012. When pension deficit payments of £9.1M and non-recurring items of expenditure of £6.1M were taken into account, this left an overall surplus of £4.6 million for the 1st Nine Months of 2013 – a result which was £3.7 million worse than last year – the deterioration more than accounted for by the gain on the sale of Woodberry in 2012.

The balance of the Dispute Fund has risen to £29.8 million as at 30th September 2013. This reflects inflows of £2,734,747 (the 2.5% diversion from Branch Administration) offset by Dispute Benefit payments totalling £199,696.

UNITE Pensions Merger

Ed Sabisky reported that having harmonised future service pension benefits for all Unite employees effective 1st January 2013, the next step in the process has been to effect the merger of the two main UK schemes. This would result in annual expense savings – actuarial, accounting, legal – estimated at nearly £500,000. Importantly, it would also eliminate one of the last remaining T&G versus Amicus differences amongst Unite’s employees – all would be exactly the same. To effect a merger, however, as a consequence of the former T&G scheme being better funded, it was necessary to offer a few minor enhancements to T&G scheme members (to offset the risk that Unite would become insolvent and the merged scheme couldn’t provide benefits up to the level which the members would have got had the schemes not merged). At Trustees meetings in November and December, the Trustees of both schemes voted in principle to approve the merger. The Council approved the merger of the two schemes on the basis summarised in the report provided.

Technical Rule amendment to improve UNITE's tax status

As a result of the report of Ed Sabisky and legal advice to the Union the Council agreed (by a more than 75% majority) to modify Rule 4.4 which currently reads:

4.4 The Executive Council shall determine the scope and level of benefits.

So that it will read:

4.4 The Executive Council shall determine the scope and level of benefits. 4.4.1 Such benefits may include such things as: Driver Care, funeral, incapacity, personal accident (death, loss of limb/eye, permanent disability), maternity/adoption, paternity, convalescence, professional liability insurance, 4.4.2 Maximum sum assured. The Union shall not have the power to assure for any member/individual provident benefits amounting to more than £4,000 by way of a gross sum or £825 by way of an annuity.

and to amend Rule 29.2 which currently reads:

29.2 After discharging all debts and liabilities the remaining assets of the Union, if any, shall be distributed equally between the members at the date of dissolution unless the members when voting for dissolution shall have resolved to the contrary.

to read:

29.2 After discharging all debts and liabilities the remaining assets of the Union, if any, shall be distributed equally between the members at the date of dissolution on the basis of their complete years of membership, each year comprising one share, unless the members when voting for dissolution shall have resolved to the contrary.

Legal report

Director of Legal and Affiliated services, Howard Beckett reported to the Council on the following areas:

• Audits of Unite panel legal firms • Personal Injury and IT update • Employment Tribunal fees • Unite blacklisting Report • Asbestos Report • Legal Training • Update on Legislation including Mesothelioma Bill • Financial Position of the Department • Legal Cases of Significance • PI, Employment & Tribunal case statistics • CAC applications • Industrial Disputes and Repudiations

He also reported on the success of the Retired Member Plus and retention membership programmes. The launch of the Unite Credit Union Service which currently only covers England, Scotland and Wales. The panel will expand in the New Year with coverage in Ireland. The member gets member scheme continues to gain momentum. He also reported on progress with Unite Motor Insurance; Unite Home Insurance; Unite protect; the Unite Lottery and Benevolent Fund as well as Unite prepaid Debit Card and Unite Rewards. With respect to the Republic of Ireland he reported that the new legal and affiliated services hare being well received. There will be launch of an Irish version of Community and Retired Member Plus packages in 2014. He is proposing changes to Driver Care to allow supervisors/inspectors to join the scheme.

Industrial reports

Transport & Food

Diana Holland AGS reported on the UNITE Transport Strategy Document agreed at the recent NISC conference. It calls for more investment, better integration, and end to the race to the bottom and strong regulation and control including opposition to privatisation.

She reported that the NISC conferences had successfully considered a collective bargaining strategy for each of their sectors, and although a success, it was clear that we need to work hard to influence new Transport Shadow Secretary Mary Creagh.

Among ongoing work in Transport and Food, there was satisfaction at the outcome of the agreement on a Petroleum Driver's Passport, progress on Thames Gateway DP Ports recognition and the Welsh Assembly voting to keep the Agricultural Workers Wages Board.

The Passenger Transport Sector report covered pensions attacks across the industry, the struggle to support our Isle of man Bus Vannin workers and the negotiations to bring in the first Quality Contract - in Tyne and Wear. A motion was passed giving UNITE's full support to our members in Northern Ireland who are fighting a recent move to privatise Translink.

Road Transport and Logistics continues to battle against competitive trade unions who in some case are eager to agree sweetheart deals. There was disappointment at Chukka Umunna's lack of understanding of our concerns re changes to TUPE when he met with UNITE reps. There has been a fierce strike in UPS in Camden by UNITE members who are saying no to bullying. The struggle continues to protect pensions for Sainsbury distribution drivers and work continues to organise anti-union haulier Eddie Stobart.

There has been a major dispute at Khune Nagel in Food and Drink sector in which UNITE were successful. In Civil Air Transport UNITE has finally won union recognition in the new British Airways "mixed fleet" which had been at the centre of the major UNITE dispute in 2010.

Rural, Agricultural and Allied Workers are working on their strategic plan to grow their sector and justify a recent decision not to merge this sector with Food Drink and Tobacco.

Services

Gail Cartmel reported on • successful organising efforts in Finance and Legal • preparation for a major battle over public sector pay • TUC Day of Action against blacklisting and UNITE's bid to win compensation for the thousands of victims • last REMPLOY factory has closed - but Welsh Assembly has developed an alternative • UNITE Yorkshire Ambulance dispute and successful lobby of Parliament • Justice Alliance protest against slashing of legal aid budget

Regarding the NHS the Health Sector is developing a pilot organising project built around the fight to save the NHS. So far 85% of contracts put up for tender have gone to the private sector. There is real concern at the US/EU draft trade agreement which could make renationalisation impossible.

Another major concern is the fight to defend Lewisham Hospital trust which is sustainable. Having lost a court battle to force closure of the hospital, Jeremy Hunt is now pressing through legislation to give him the powers to do so.

In Local Authorities, the austerity spending cuts have hit crisis points with many Councils making massive redundancies and axing or slashing essential public services.

Manufacturing

Tony Burke AGS commenting on the Government's claims of economic growth said that there had been 0.9% growth in the last quarter but if you take out automotive then the manufacturing output is 13% lower than before the recession in 2008. An ambitious motor components supply chain strategy is underway bringing production back to the UK and bringing these new employees into UNITE membership. In BMW Cowley our UNITE members have secured a deal to win permanent employment status for agency workers, whilst a fight continues over attacks on their pension.

Our CMA membership in the Post Office joined with CWU in opposing the privatisation of Royal Mail and are demanding a meeting with Chukka Ummuna to ask why Labour will not commit to renationalisation?

There has been a stunning success by our UNITE members in Rolls Royce aerospace to stop attacks on their pension. Meanwhile BAe Systems have announced 1775 job losses.

Equalities

UNITE Equalities sectors are moving forward on equalities opposing cuts to equality rights and campaigning for legal status for equalities reps. In the face of right wing attacks on equalities, it has been agreed to produce a strategic document redefining why we support equalities and why equalities matter.

International report

Council stood for a standing ovation to mark the extraordinary life of Nelson Mandela who had recently died. The UNITE delegation to South Africa has had to be rescheduled whilst we assess recent developments e.g. the split of NUMSA from COSATU and growing disaffection with the ANC.

Simon Dubbins International Director remarked that both Japan and USA are in growth due to fiscal stimulus measures, whilst Europe continues to falter as a result of right wing austerity programmes. Germany, which is driving austerity elsewhere in Europe, itself has grown slightly and is introducing a new national Minimum Wages of E8.5 in 2015. it has a lower retirement age (63 years) than most of Europe and has agreed to the TOBIN tax. UNITE supported a protest outside the Greek Embassy over attacks by Golden Dawn on journalists and others.

UNITE is promoting our UNITE Charter on Principles to Confront Corporate Bad Behaviour which after some argument has been adopted by IndustriALL. The ITF Executive Board has agreed to adopt in principle but have agreed to place it before 2014 Congress in Sofia.

There is reason to hope that progress will be made for the Cuban (Miami) 5 as their sentences come to an end and representatives from the US citizen being held in Cuba agree that a mutual exchange deal is a desirable settlement worth achieving. We will continue to advance their case in USA especially with US unions.

UNITE sent an observer to verify the recent elections in Venezuela where the right wing is attempting to destabilise the democratic process.

In Colombia Hugo Ballesteros remains in custody and the Mayor of Bogota regarded as a progressive has been deposed.

UNITE is to revitalise our links with Palestine as the links between Israel and South Africa's apartheid policies are made clear by the apartheid wall, the break up and isolation of Palestinian communities and the expansion of illegal Israeli settlements into the West bank. In Chile it is expected that progressive left candidate Michelle Bachelet will win the Presidential election. She is the daughter of an army general who backed Allende's Government whilst her main opponent is the daughter of an army general who backed Pinochet's Government.

Remits from Regions and Sectors

Correspondence including Resolutions from National Industrial Sector and Regional Committees
Stand Down Officer Position  This remit from the Metals NISC which called for the inclusion of any member undertaking the role of stand-down officer should be automatically included in any shortlist for a vacant position in their Region and that feedback on interviews for officer appointments. Whilst, it was pointed out that the feedback referred to is always issued on request by the HR department the resolution was remitted to the Executive Officers in light of the General Secretary’s report. 
Defend our NHS The remit submitted by the Health NISC calling for the fight to Defend the NHS to be a fight for Unite as a whole was agreed in principle bearing in mind the on-going Union wide campaign to save the NHS.
Ineos, Grangemouth This remit from the NEY&H Regional Committee was withdrawn in light of the General Secretary’s report on the position.
Legal Representation at County Court  This remit from the NEY&H Regional Committee seeking clarification, in light of fees now payable in Employment Tribunals etc., on the type and amount of help a member can expect from union solicitors in County Court/Small Claims court was accepted by the Council and referred to the Director of Legal Services.
Badge of Merit  This remit from the NEY&H Regional Committee calling for a new design for the Badge of Merit was remitted to the Executive Officers with a view to a new design being investigated and regions consulted prior to a new one being produced.  In the meantime, stocks of the current badge to be used up.
Member get Member Scheme This remit from the South West Regional Committee calling for a change to the member get member scheme to include new members paying on check off as well as direct debit was noted by the Council.
Membership Recruitment This remit from the south West Regional Committee requesting a modification to the member get member scheme to include members who are not paying full contributions was agreed.
Austerity and Discrimination  This remit from the North West Regional Committee states that austerity cuts are discriminatory because they disproportionately affect women; low income families, ethnic minorities and the disabled and called on the Union to urgently see legal advice with a view to mounting a legal challenge at the European Court of Human Rights was noted by the Council in view of comments by the General Secretary and the Director of Legal Services.
EDM 1160 This remit submitted by the North West Regional Committee called on the union to urge other unions to support this EDM was supported by the Council.
North West Fire Services  This remit from the North West Regional Committee was agreed by the Council in its call for support to all firefighters.
NW Construction Inquiry Report  This remit from the North West Regional Committee was rejected by the Council.
Action on Officers to improve attendance at Area Activist Meetings  This remit from the North West Regional Committee calling for officers to be instructed to ensure 4 new activists a year to their local Area Activists Meetings was noted in view of the ongoing analysis of the current position with regards to these committees.
Poachers turned Gamekeepers  This remit from the North West Regional Committee regarding officers leaving the employ of the union to take up employment with employers was noted in the light of comments from the Director of Legal Services that he would look into what could be done.
Trade Union Political Representation: Lord Collins’ Report and Labour Party Conference  This remit from the North West Regional Committee was noted by the Council in light of other decisions. 
TUPE This remit from the North West Regional Committee calling for an effective lobby in Europe calling for amendments to the Acquired Rights Directive was supported by the Council
Unite Anti Cuts Policy This remit from the North West Regional Committee was noted in light of the Political Director’s report regarding developments in communications with members who are also Councillors.
Support for Female Applicants for RIO Posts  This resolution from the West Midlands Regional Committee calling for support for women to become more active in Unite and to give them a real chance to become Regional Officers was remitted to the Executive Officers in light of the General Secretary’s comments.
Union Fleet Vehicles  This resolution from the West Midlands Regional Committee calling for a review of the Union’s policy on the choice if fleet vehicles was remitted to the Executive Officers in light of the report of the Director of Finance and Operations.
Northern Ireland – Translink Privatisation This remit submitted by the Passenger NISC which called for Unite to lend weight to the campaign by members in Northern Ireland to stop the privatisation of Translink was supported by the Council.
UK’s Energy Resources  This remit from the London & Eastern Regional Committee calling for a vigorous campaign for a policy to bring the various strands of the UK energy industry back into public ownership was supported by the Council.
Appointment of Organisers, Organisers in Training, Team Leaders and Senior Organisers This remit from the South West Regional Committee about the process and procedure regarding the appointment of organisers was withdrawn in light of discussions with the National Organising Department.
Increasing Diversity  This remit from the National BAEM Committee was lost.
Social Media  This remit from the Civil Air Transport NISC regarding resources for social media was noted while awaiting a report from the National Officer.
Changes to TUPE Regulations  This remit submitted by the Local Authorities NISC calling for a campaign to actively oppose changes to TUPE Regulations was supported by the Council.
Labour Party Proposals This remit from the Scotland Regional Committee was noted in light of the Political Director’s report.
Unite and the Trade Union Link This remit from the Passenger Transport NISC was noted in light of the Political Director’s Report.
Emergency Motion – Nelson Mandela An emergency motion submitted by a member of the EC was not formally carried but its sentiments will be carried forward by the Executive Officers
Motion from Gibraltar District Committee A motion submitted by the Gibraltar District Committee was circulated to the Executive Council; however, there was no formal process for them to discuss it. It was referred to the National Officer with responsibility for Gibraltar to be taken forward.

Appendix I

COLLINS REVIEW: RESPONSE OF UNITE EXECUTIVE COUNCIL

1. Unite welcomes any measures which increase the involvement of individual trade unionists in the Labour Party.

2. However, it cannot support any proposal that would lead to the collective voice of Unite being expressed solely through individual Unite members scattered across the constituency parties, nor can it accept any diminution of the trade union vote at either Regional or National Conferences (i.e. 50% at the latter), nor of our delegation to Conference, on the NEC, NPC, CAC and NCC

3. We therefore propose the following:

• Affiliated organisations continue to affiliate to the Party on a collective basis. Trade Union and other branches continue to affiliate and send delegates to their local CLP; which delegates must be full members of the Labour Party.

• Individual political levy paying members of trade unions be encouraged to ‘opt in’ to associate membership of the Labour Party as part of the drive to build a Party of mass membership

• Those associate members receive limited rights, including the right to vote in leadership elections and in the selection of Parliamentary candidates

• Full fee-paying members of the Labour Party will secure all additional rights now enjoyed such as the ability to stand for office at local and national level, to be delegates to their CLP and to vote at GC/all-member meetings

4. In line with Unite’s Political Strategy, we would then encourage all associate members to become full individual members of the Labour Party.

5. Constituency Development Plans: Trade unions and affiliated organisations must remain free to provide relevant support to candidates who reflect and promote their values.

6. Primaries: Unite is opposed to the principle of open primaries to select candidates for Mayors or for any other elected representative. Voting in selections must remain the prerogative of members and associate members.

7. Conduct of Selections: Unite supports the establishment of a meaningful code of conduct to apply to all groups, factions and individuals during selections. Such a code must include a fast-track complaints procedure to the central Compliance Unit with a right of appeal against any decision.

Appendix II

  

Category: December 2013
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