United Left is the left shop stewards network in UNITE the Union
United Left Statement on Support for Corbyn
The progressive left network in UNITE the Union
UNITED LEFT backs JEREMY CORBYN
for Labour Leader
United Left, the highly influential left network of shop stewards and activists in UNITE The Union*, urges all trade unionists, their families and friends to participate in the forthcoming ballot for Labour Leader and cast their vote for Jeremy Corbyn.
|Union members who are not Labour Party members can have a vote if they become “affiliated supporters”, if – like UNITE – they are members of a trade union affiliated to the Labour Party. Contact your shop steward or full time officer, go on your union’s website or use the Unions Together website http://www.unionstogether.org.uk/our_party_our_voice
Members of unions not affiliated to the Labour Party, and family members and friends who are not in a union can have a vote by becoming a “registered supporter” for £3. This can be done online using the Labour Party website http://www.labour.org.uk/w/labour-party-supporters
In both cases, you will need to sign a declaration that you support Labour values and are not in a political party opposed to the Labour Party. Registration closes 12th Aug
We urge a vote for Jeremy Corbyn because he is the only candidate who stands for a return of the Labour Party to working class values; for an end to austerity; for trade union rights; for an economy that works for ordinary people; for fairness and justice; for peace and international solidarity.
We reject the criticism that a vote for Jeremy as Leader will alienate the voters and cast Labour into the wilderness for decades. On the contrary, there is huge support in the country for a return to a genuine centre-left agenda. The massive surge of interest and support for Jeremy’s campaign is witness to that. By contrast the other contenders have run uninspiring campaigns with no new policies except a lurch back to the right. A return to the policies of New Labour will be disastrous for Labour’s chances in the 2020 election.
People are fed up with thirty years of right wing neo-liberal politics which have seen:
- Working class living standards decline in real terms, so that today there are 5M jobs on minimum wage, 4.5M in bogus self-employment and countless numbers on zero hours contracts
- Trade unions and collective bargaining marginalised and attacked. Only Jeremy Corbyn understands the need for Labour to embrace trade unions and stand up for our rights in a free and democratic society
- Public services privatised including the Post Office, utilities and public transport, and now our NHS! Opinion polls have consistently shown majority support for a return to public ownership.
- A housing crisis that puts a decent home out of reach for working class families. Council houses have been sold off and private rents are sky high
- A welfare state all but dismantled, pushing millions into real poverty and reliance on food banks here in one of the richest countries in the world
- A massive increase in the gap between rich and poor unequalled anywhere else in Europe, with a seemingly never ending programme of tax cuts for the rich and big business
- Pensions attacked and a culture of “work till you drop” with millions facing poverty and deprivation in old age
- A deregulated labour market that permits employers to exploit low cost foreign workers in place of workers who live here, fuelling racism, fascism and Islamophobia.
People are fed up with a Labour Party which has no answers to the above. We don’t want a Labour Party that supports “austerity-lite”; that can’t even vote against Tory welfare cuts; that supports yet further pay restraint for public sector workers; that has no answers to the housing crisis affecting working class households across the country; that is embarrassed by its trade union connections and won’t reverse anti-union laws.
Jeremy Corbyn is the only candidate who says there is an alternative to austerity.
Austerity means massive spending cuts on vital public services and welfare, making the poorest in our society pay for a crisis not of our making. But this depresses the economy, reducing tax receipts and increasing public spending on poverty and unemployment. Instead we should be investing in our economy, getting businesses working again and creating jobs. This would generate tax receipts and reduce spending on welfare – and reduce the deficit.
We CAN reclaim the missing tax billions (estimated to exceed £100B a year in taxes evaded or avoided by big business and wealthy individuals, or simply uncollected by an under-resourced Inland Revenue ravaged by senseless public sector job cuts).
We CAN create a public investment bank to invest in our infrastructure, new council homes, public transport, renewable energy, insulation and much more, using the public sector as the motor for recovery.
We CAN create decent well- paid jobs and place orders with private sector businesses which will generate tax receipts for the Treasury and reduce public spending on welfare benefits as we raise people out of poverty.
We CAN offer a vision of hope for working people under a Labour Government, but it’s good for business too. Indeed it’s a much surer way of paying off the deficit than the destructive and divisive right wing policy of austerity.
There is a brighter future under Labour. Vote for Jeremy Corbyn!
Note for Editors:
United Left is an informal network of shop stewards and lay activists, but also includes full time officials. It is the largest broad left organisation in any union in the country. It campaigns for a strong fighting back trade union delivering for its members and for a left voice on political issues that affect working class people. It leads and influences the debate over policy within and without the union. United Left also supports candidates in union elections including for General Secretary and for the UNITE Executive Council (46 of the 63 members are United Left supporters).
Jeremy Corbyn addressed the United Left national supporters meeting in Manchester on Saturday 25th July.
For comment please contact Martin Mayer United Left Chair email firstname.lastname@example.org