Rail union RMT has announced to members in a circular that the TUC plans to call an emergency protest in Westminster on the evening of the next parliamentary reading of the Minimum Services Levels Bill.
This will take place sometimes between 10-25 May. (See below for the text of the RMT circular.)
Protests coinciding with parliamentary readings are important. When we know when the bill will be heard, a protest must certainly be called. However, the TUC – or a coalition of individual unions – does not have to, and should not, wait for the parliamentary timetable to be announced to call action. Unions must call a national demonstration, on a Saturday, and throw real resources into mobilising for it.
Several unions already have policy calling for this: it’s time they were enacted.
PROTECT THE RIGHT TO STRIKE – FIGHT THE ANTI-STRIKES Bill – UPDATE
I wanted to provide you with an important update on our campaign against the Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill which continues to pose a fundamental threat to our democratic and human right to withdraw our labour.
Since I last wrote to you RMT along with TUC and other unions are still strongly campaigning against the Bill. The Bill has slightly stalled in the House of Lords with many peers ridiculing the Bill for “wasting Peers’ time” and that Government “should go back to the drawing board.”
However, the Government is still pushing ahead with this shocking Bill and the report stage in the House of Lords is set to take place this Wednesday 26 April. It will then go back to the House of Commons, with the final Commons debate probably being sometime 10-25 May but this has not been confirmed yet
On the night of the final Commons votes, the TUC is calling an Emergency Protest outside Parliament with the date to be confirmed but, like the previous Emergency Protests we have called, we’ll likely only get a week’s notice.
It is absolutely vital that we keep up the pressure against this bill so please be prepared and on-standby to urgently mobilise for an emergency protest at some point between 10-25 May and I will be in touch with more details as soon as I have them.