Thursday, September 18, 2008

Labour don't want union members to know about the political levy

As most people know, the Labour Party is, for the most part, about 90% in the red with the trade unions. If the trade unions pulled their financial support the party would not only have a crap leader it would be well and truly knackered.

The thing to remember of course is that much of that money actually comes from trade union members through the political levy. No one has to pay the political levy, thanfully the opt-out is a regulatory right. However, the trade unions do very little to let their members know this.

When the Government was asked if they would bring forward changes to the regulations to make it a requirement that members be told they can opt-out of the political levy and not, in effect, make a donation to the Labour Party you can guess the response.

Pat McFadden said "[w]e have no plans at present to extend the regulatory requirements further." What a surprise! Hardly likely to change the rules so people actually become aware they're funding the Labour party at a time when the party is at all time low now are they?


CROWN said...

I am stunned that Labour can get away with this funding in today's code of not giving the impression that a party is under obligation to a funder.

I appreciate the links between unions and the Labour party, but the unions are perceived and actually do pull the levers of power.

The Tories will alter this after the next election and this means that the next election really will be the end of the Labour party.

Anonymous said...

I know I opted out on my UNISON form. No way I was giving the Labour bastards any more than they take already.

It's a check box on the form. Similar to the contact opt outs you get in many places. I wouldn't have said it was hidden at all, it wasn't hidden in small print at the bottom of the form. Maybe not explained, but not hidden.

Tories on 52%. No mention on the BBC.

Anonymous said...

The unions only give as much as they receive in "modernisation" grants (of the order of 10M GBP)from the NuLab government. I find this even more disgraceful.

CROWN said...

In fact wasn't it Plaid that gave the links to various union's opt out form.

I wonder why the blogosphere do not major on this, I am guessing that the Tories do not want to push this sort of thing at the moment as Labour are in power.

Anonymous said...

Why not actually have an opt-in?

John Pickworth said...

Many moons ago (back in the 80's), I had cause to work for six months in a Midlands factory producing many varied plastic goods.

I was the only shop floor worker not to have joined the union and everyday I was 'reminded' of that fact. After much 'persuasion' I agreed to join but I said I wouldn't pay the political levy. Later that night I was set upon by the Shop Steward and her sisters... it was truly like something out of Cell Block H !!!

Not wanting to join the union was bad enough - but I can understand the reasons why they felt strongly I should. However refusing to pay the levy was like the gravest insult, it was as if I'd just urinated on their precious little red book.

Like I said, this was a long time ago and I hope things have changed since then. But that 20 year old nursing a black-eye has never forgotten his first introducion to the Labour Party and those who represent it. I hate them all with a passion.

Anonymous said...

the solution is simple, and i am sure the Tories are already planning it. The political affiliation will no longer be the preserve of the union committee but the union member.

A requirement for union membership to be entered electronically on a website, with the member giving the option to pay a levy to *any* registered political party, or non at all, with the choice kept confidential to the member.

Watch the labour party and the unions shit themselves.

Jackson Jeffrey Jackson said...

Is everyone here equally outraged by the fact that companies can and do make donations to the Tory Party and Tory candidates without asking you to agree to it when you buy something from them / bank with them?

Anonymous said...

Let's not forget that the TUC has been giving the Labour Party its instructions since 1899. The job of the Labour Party has always been to sell those instructions to the general population.

tory boys never grow up said...

"However, the trade unions do very little to let their members know this."

Funny - my union's current membership form tells everyone they can opt out? Perhaps you should support your assertions by a little evidence!