Convenor of union’s largest region and chair of largest service group also confirms support
Former Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell has today issued a video backing the popular Paul Holmes as the next general secretary of giant union Unison – and has delivered a damning verdict on the union’s previous leadership.
McDonnell praised Holmes’s grassroots credentials and his democratic intent to return the union to its members – who, he said, have too often seen Unison’s leaders ignore or even work against their interest:
Holmes responded to McDonnell’s message of support by confirming his intentions to make the union accountable to its members again:
John McDonnell’s endorsement means a lot to me. He is one of the most respected and experienced fighters for workers in the UK. My campaign for General Secretary is based on two important principles: democracy and accountability to members. These principles will be vital to defending our members’ pay, terms and conditions and jobs. I am proud that John has given me his support.
Glen Williams is convenor of UNISON’s largest region, the North West, and chair of its Local Government service group – with almost 700,000 members also the union’s largest, with around half Unison’s total membership.
On a day in which Holmes also took further steps toward the nominations he needs to secure a place on the ballot, Williams added his considerable weight to the campaign:
I am 100 per cent behind Paul’s campaign. It is really great that John has given his support to Paul. John is right – this union needs to change and it needs to be accountable to its members. To have the support of such a long-serving UNISON member as John is a real honour for the campaign.
With plans to take a reduced salary and ensure that local union branches double their share of funding, Holmes threatens to be a game-changer and is building a campaign to do it.
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