Tamil Solidarity joined trade union general secretaries to speak at an important rally during the Trades Union Congress conference in Brighton. The TUC is a federation bringing together the main unions in Britain, representing millions of working people. On the platform of the rally, organised by the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) – alongside Isai Priya, Tamil Solidarity’s trade union organiser – were the general secretaries of the PCS civil service union, RMT transport workers, FBU fire-fighters, BFAWU bakers’ union, CWU postal workers and POA prison officers. Other speakers represented a number of workplaces and industries where action is being taken to stop job losses, to campaign for improved working conditions and fight for workers’ rights.
The current Tory government is increasing its attacks on public services and local government spending, resulting in massive job cuts and cuts to the services which millions of people, including society’s most vulnerable, depend on. The trade unions play a vital role in defending these jobs and services. And, of course, the Tories’ austerity programme affects the vast majority of Tamil people living in Britain.
Tamil Solidarity is the only campaign linking up the struggle for Tamil rights with the workers’ movement. We are natural allies in the fight for our rights and for decent pay, working conditions, education, housing, health and the other services we all need. This link, developed through consistent campaigning, has also allowed us to raise awareness of the Tamil struggle in the workers’ movement. Tamil Solidarity completely supports the unions’ campaign to oppose the government’s latest attack on trade union rights.
Tamil Solidarity thanks the NSSN for the invitation to speak at this historic rally – and for providing the opportunity for us to strengthen the links between our two movements.
Watch video of NSSN rally and lobby here: