With the election of a hard-right Tory government promising new restrictions on the right to strike, it is more urgent than ever that the entire labour movement unites to resist anti-union laws.

Free Our Unions was initiated by The Clarion magazine and Lambeth Unison. It is now backed by dozens of unions branches, committees, and local Labour Parties. Four national trade unions – IWGB, FBU, RMT, and PCS – have supported the campaign via their Annual General Meetings and/or National Executive Committees. It was initially established to promote and amplify policies passed at Labour Party conferences calling for the abolition of all anti-union laws, not only the most recent, and to demand Labour fight for this policy in opposition and commit to enacting it in government. (For more background to the campaign, click here.)

Free Our Unions now plans renewed campaigning against the Tories’ proposed new laws, and is calling for united and coordinated activity between existing campaign groups currently active on these issues.

Organise against new anti-strike threats

Prospective Prime Minister Liz Truss has announced a raft of new anti-strike laws she plans to introduce if elected. These include: • Action within thirty days of taking office to introduce the “minimum service requirement” outlawing all-out strikes in certain sectors that the Tories pledged in their 2019 manifesto for transport – but extended toContinue reading “Organise against new anti-strike threats”

Honour the Pentonville Five? Then fight to scrap all anti-union laws!

This is a discussion article, written by a supporter of Free Our Unions 150 people packed into the eve-of-Durham Miners’ Gala rally held by the Institute of Employment Rights (IER) think tank on 8 July. It was hung on the hook of the mass action that freed the “Pentonville Five” fifty years ago this month,Continue reading “Honour the Pentonville Five? Then fight to scrap all anti-union laws!”

Green Party deputy leader candidates: speak out for free trade unions!

Following our candidates’ pledge for the recent Momentum NCG elections, Free Our Unions supporters in the Green Party have issued a pledge for candidates in the party’s deputy leadership election. The pledge, below, asks candidates to commit to using their positions to promoting and building solidarity for workers’ action, and supporting a fight to repealContinue reading “Green Party deputy leader candidates: speak out for free trade unions!”

As Tories threaten new anti-union laws, build solidarity for a summer of strikes!

With the RMT’s strikes on the national rail and London Underground leading the way for what will hopefully become a summer of strikes, the labour movement must build solidarity for all workers’ struggles – and mobilise to resist the threat of new anti-union laws. The Tories have already responded to the RMT strikes by rushingContinue reading “As Tories threaten new anti-union laws, build solidarity for a summer of strikes!”

GMB to renew campaigning against anti-union laws

The congress of the GMB union, Britain’s third largest, has resolved to renew the union’s campaigning against legal restrictions on workers’ right to organise and strike, after congress passed a composite motion from branches in Glasgow and Southampton. The motion noted the policy passed in 2021 on the same issue, and called for further actionContinue reading “GMB to renew campaigning against anti-union laws”

UCU Congress takes strong stance against anti-union laws

The recent congress of the University and College Union, held online from 1-3 June, passed a resolution committing the union to a strong stance, and campaigning, against anti-union laws. The motion was proposed by the UCU branch at Birkbeck, which recently voted to support Free Our Unions, as well as UCU University of Brighton (Moulsecoomb),Continue reading “UCU Congress takes strong stance against anti-union laws”

Defend the right to picket: protest at Hastings Magistrates Court, 9:30, 29 June

Hastings and District TUC has called a protest at Hastings Magistrates Court (Bohemia Road, Hastings TN34 1ND) for 9:30 on 29 June, when three GMB officials arrested on a Wealden council refuse workers’ picket line will appear in court. The organisers write: “Three GMB officials were arrested on the picket line at Amberstone Depot inContinue reading “Defend the right to picket: protest at Hastings Magistrates Court, 9:30, 29 June”

As Tories reassert anti-strike law threat, unions must resist

In response to the RMT’s national ballot of workers in Network Rail and 15 mainline Train Operating Companies, Transport Secretary Grant Shapps has said the government will accelerate plans for new laws to restrict transport workers’ strikes. The plan is not new: the Tories’ 2019 manifesto included a commitment to implement the laws, which wouldContinue reading “As Tories reassert anti-strike law threat, unions must resist”