Unite the Union yesterday vowed to mobilise against “the cliff-edge” brought about by the UK government’s “abysmal” handling of the Brexit process.
In a statement passed overwhelmingly by Unite’s policy conference in Brighton, the union said it would push for a general election in order to deliver a Labour government committed to securing the best possible future for working people.
Delegates to the conference – drawn from workplaces across the UK and Ireland – agreed a statement demanding that any Brexit deal must deliver barrier-free access to the Single Market, secure a customs union with the EU, protect and enhance workers’ rights, safeguard the Good Friday Agreement, ensure that there is no hard border between the Republic of Ireland and the north, and “protect the integrity of Gibraltar”, Unite said.
General secretary Len McCluskey said Unite was not calling for a second referendum, but rather that voters be allowed to pass their verdict on any Brexit deal with the EU.
“[Prime Minister Theresa May] is held prisoner by the dogmatists and fantasists of the far right,” he said.
“These people see in Brexit the chance to turn Britain into the low-wage, deregulated, race-to-the-bottom society of their dreams.”
“But Brexit is turning into a nightmare for the rest of us – a nightmare of uncertainty above all.”
“The shadow of job losses is hanging over much of the British economy, including the jobs of tens of thousands of Unite members.”