The TU Bill was back in the House of Commons yesterday and thanks to a good campaign run by the Trade Union Movement we have some good news for a change on this Bill.
The Tory Government has accepted most of the House of Lords amendments on political funds the certification officer etc. and whilst this is welcome it is still a bad Bill for workers and it still makes it difficult workers to withdraw their labour and we should still, continue the campaign of opposition and seek to win further changes in the Bill.
It should not be underestimated however the amendments that have been made, it is good progress, for workers in organised workplaces.
One of the significant changed to the Bill is members will still be able to pay their Trade Union contributions through their pay, you will know from earlier emails GMB’s position was to hope for the best and prepare for the worst and in preparing for the worst we embarked on a campaign to switch people to direct debit. GMB no longer face the cliff edge in the Bill that would have seen on 1 April 2017 all check off payments will end. This is a significant victory for GMB as this was the one part of the Bill that could have really hindered our ability to deliver services to members.
For those who had started the campaign to switch over may I on behalf of GMB thank you all for your efforts your hard work and the enthusiasm shown during the campaign it was really good to see. And remember your efforts were worth it, even with this change in the Bill, for all those we managed to convert to direct debit we no longer give between 5 to 6% of our members’ money to the employer in admin fees.
GMB nationally will assess the situation and I think it would be a fair assessment to say the work to get people to move to direct debit will continue but with no immediate deadline to meet which is good. It would also be good in terms of we would be in a better position to ward off any future attack by this or any future government trying to stop our ability to deliver services to our members. It would also be good to put the money the employer currently receives for handling check off back to the branches where the money could be used to improve members benefits.
Still that’s a discussion for another day, today is a victory for the unions and let’s applaud that and again thank you all for your support during the campaign against this Bill.
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