16 April 2011
Edinburgh Branch motions passed by UNISON Scottish
Three motions from UNISON City of Edinburgh Branch
were passed by UNISON's Scottish Council of branches
on 16 April. The
Stop the Cuts motion from the AGM was passed
with an amendment to ensure it was consitutional
and Scottish Council will affilate to Unite Against
Fascism. both moved by Duncan Smith
Our motion on 26 March: What next? was moved
by John Stevenson and passed overwhelmingly. See
26 March: What next?
Scottish Council congratulates the 500,000 trade
unionists, community groups, pensioners and others
who joined the massive demonstration in London on
It recognises in particular the thousands who travelled
from Scotland in some cases under difficult circumstances.
While congratulating the excellent UNISON organisation
that contributed to the success of such a memorable
day, Scottish Council believes that this must be
just the start of an escalating campaign to defend
our services, jobs and welfare state.
Such action should involve industrial action where
possible, further demonstrations and events and
co-ordinated campaigning and political lobbying.
We now need to capitalise on the strengths of the
demonstration in London which were:
- a massive affirmation of majority support for
- the new confidence that such an event brings
to participants to take forward their individual
- the experience of collectivism and solidarity
that will encourage people to take a fuller part
in campaigns and action.
Scottish Council recognises that direct action
has had a part to play in struggles over the years,
sometimes significantly, and it notes that some
events like those organised by UK Uncut have helped
expose the rich institutions that parasitically
avoid paying their fair share in society.
However, Scottish Council believes the actions
of some groups on 26 March detracted in the media
- if not on the ground - from the overall impact
of the demonstration. While the media can be blamed
for its focus, the groups concerned would have been
well aware of the media agenda and as such their
actions showed at best a lack of respect for the
broad solidarity (and potentially safety) of the
500,000 who marched to get a message across - and
at worst could risk undermining participation in
future broad-based events.
This meeting calls on the Scottish Committee, in
conjunction with service groups, to progress our
campaign with the maximum unity and the broadest
appeal to our members and the people who rely on
the services they provide.
We reiterate our call for UNISON Scotland to investigate
with the STUC ways of bringing together civic society
for further joint demonstrations and trade unions
for joint industrial action where legally possible
- in line with trade unions' respective rules and
constitutions - to take the campaign forward.