A trade union health warning
The Dublin trade union health march of 5th April showed the possibility of a fight back on health and the many campaigning bodies willing to unite and mobilise. One union figure said that the trade unions ‘would not stand idly by’ another that the march was not the end and the struggle would continue.
Yet by the 17th ICTU had had a special conference and agreed that it would enter partnership negotiations. Health wasn’t even mentioned as an issue for the negotiations. The SIPTU conference of a few days before mentioned concerns about public services, but this was a poor fourth on the list of issues.
That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to mobilise trade unionists. Mobilising organised workers is absolutely essential. We should understand from the start that we will be working against the grain of the TU leadership — Rank and file workers are the allies we must reach!