This article, by Gregor Gall, was originally published on Jacobin in November 2019. Find it here. In 1980s Britain, miners went on strike in support of nurses’ pay claims, throwing their industrial muscle behind under-pressure hospital staff. After decades of harsh anti-union laws, Labour’s manifesto promises a way to rebuild this culture of solidarity.
Would the kind of action British miners took in their great strike in 1984-5 remain illegal under a Corbyn government? What about the struggles of the Great Unrest just before World War One, the 1926 General Strike, the Ford Dagenham women’s strike in 1968, the strikes to free jailed dockers in 1972, the 1976-8 GrunwickContinue reading “Would the miners’ strike have been illegal under Corbyn’s union laws?”
“[Since 1980, trade unions have been] regulated, harried, battered, fined and sequestrated, step by step by step, in Act after Act in pursuit of aim of decollectivising the workplace.” – Labour peer Bill Wedderburn on the last of nine Tory anti-union Acts, 1993