Analysis Announcement

Left ‘Time for Real Change’ slate issues statement on its new Unison NEC majority

Group promises ‘a more democratic, inclusive and fighting trade union’ and transformation for working-class people

The ‘Time for Real Change’ left group has issued a statement on its ‘earth-shaking’ result this week in the elections to Unison’s national executive, promising to turn the union into a genuinely member-led organisation – and setting its sights on both the Labour party and the wider labour movement:

Statement on UNISON NEC Elections

The #TimeForRealChange campaign is delighted to announce that 37 of its 56 candidates were successfully elected to the UNISON NEC. Congratulations go to all our successful candidates who are committed to real change in UNISON, and commiserations go to those who fell just short this time. This majority for change on the UNISON NEC must now enable a positive transformation of our union.

#TimeForRealChange are grassroots trade unionist and socialist candidates who are determined to change UNISON into a more democratic, inclusive and fighting trade union. We are the largest trade union in the UK, and as such we believe we can have a transformative effect for the working class and of course those who work in our public services, whether they be employed in the public, private or voluntary sectors.

#TimeForRealChange has a collective vision for change. UNISON members are at the heart of that vision. We are determined to make ‘member-led’ more than just a turn of phrase in UNISON. The members have spoken in these NEC elections, giving a mandate for real change. We thank all UNISON members who voted in these NEC elections, and we wish to reach out to members who did not vote and non-unionised workers who would be eligible for UNISON membership due to them working in public services. We are excited about the tasks in front of us, but do not underestimate the discipline needed and hard work ahead: we are determined to change UNISON into a force that can protect and improve your terms and conditions at work.

We look outwards to other trade unions in a spirit of comradeship and cooperation. We look outwards to the Labour Party and wish to see it fight for workers in the way we intend UNISON to. We are focussed on UNISON members and UNISON branches – you are the driving force and beating heart of our union, and we are determined to make the union work for you.

The changes in Unison – together with the potential for Howard Beckett to be leading Unite by the autumn – could signal a fundamental shift in the landscape of the movement.

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  1. You can keep digging up obscure groups like the above that think its the job of the unions to lead a Zombie Labour party,but Steve Turner has earned the right to represent the union at the highest level and Beckett is dragging too much baggage around now.Face up to reality Steve Turner must be the leader of the unite union and is way out in front for the left voters in the unite union.

    1. Howard Beckett is the only choice to defend the manifesto of 2019.
      That manifesto serves the whole country in general but workers in general. Among those in work TRUE Labour was the LARGEST party General Election 2019. FACT.

      1. Signpost, Steve Turner was involved in both Labour manifestos the 2017 and the 2019. Turner as the Chair of the People’s Assembly Anti-austerity was instrumental in changing minds around the need for austerity at all.
        Turner changed the political landscape by persuading a lot of people that austerity is a political choice rather than a necessity.
        That you believe that Beckett is the only choice to defend the manifesto on 2019, that is your prerogative. But, it doesn’t make it a fact, it makes it YOUR OPINION.

      2. Maria Vazquez, i’m asking you again since you failed to answer.

        1- Did you support Jeremy from the get go❓ 2- Did you campaign for him as you are doing now for Luke Akehurst’s choice Turner❓

        3- Did you support Jeremy when he was struggling to get nominations❓
        4- Did you then support him DURING his FIRST Leadership contest❓
        5- Whom did you support during Sir Starmer’s first coup to unseat Jeremy within his first TWELVE months❓
        6- Whom did you support in Sir Starmer’s second coup❓
        7- Did you post at any time that you doubt Jeremy would win at ANY of those stages❓

        Many readers of may be grateful to hear EACH of your answers to these SPECIFIC clear questions.

        Thanks in advance.


      3. Many people are falling for what’s going on in this Union election!! Can you still not see that Becketts been put in there to ensure the right candidate wins?? The same way they got rid of Corbyn,they are doing the same to ensure a right winger is elected? Why aren’t Becket and Graham standing down to ensure Coyne doesn’t win?? Neither can win yet the are staying to ensure a left candidate doesn’t!! I’ve unsubscribed to Skwawkbox while he is enabling Starmer and the right to get a right winger in Unite! Use your head!

    2. What a strange comment on a Unison report. If you want to comment on the Unite election, could you please hold back until Swawkie reports on the Unite election campaigns?

      1. Not to mention it’s a load of cobblers. ‘Changed the political landscape’ my arse. Almost every economist worth their salt were warning of the consequences of austerity from the moment it was introduced and the people’s assembly never influenced anyone outside their own narrow membership.

    3. Whoever wins the election will be leader. So if Turner deserves to win let him campaign against the other three candidates. As for me, it appears my branch decided the members couldn’t have a vote and decided to nominate Turner against my wishes. So all this bullshit about Steve having the mandate to be the ONLY so called Left candidate is quite frankly nonsense and part of the stitch up that appears to be coming down the pipe. Let them put forward their manifestos, campaign and let the best man win. That is proper democracy.

    4. I disagree. He’s won more initial votes but that doesn’t mean he’ll win the overall contest. When Starmer’s union group tells Coyne to stand down in order to allow Turner to win, then we need to ask ourselves some very serious questions about why they are supporting a left wing union man like Turner. For myself I will be voting for Beckett. He is the only Unite candidate that has called out this abysmal Labour Party

  2. Maria the “FACT” refers to “Among those in work TRUE Labour was the LARGEST party General Election 2019.” Apologies for not being as clear as you needed me to be on that. You are correct re my confidence that Howard Beckett is the ONLY choice for this Unite election to present, explain to the GENERAL public as often as possible, what we the “Left” plan to rescue this country from Tories in and out of our Labour party.

    That is indeed my opinion. For more clarity, Howard is the ONLY suitable candidate for the urgent job ahead. Howard inspires and energises many while all three of the others inspire no one, except you apparently.

    The fact that Hodge and Watson see no need to attack Turner, Coyne and Graham, speaks volumes. i.e. Starmer, Evans & their controllers regard Turner, Graham and Coyne as much of a muchness. Different labels but much the same END product. i.e. guaranteed to continue as they have been the lacklustre FEARFUL culture of meagre expectations. Timidity then “fear”. “Fear” then timidity. Forever working out complicated feverish schemata as to how not to upset the Right Wing media and guard dogs.

    Those are my opinions growing stronger each day.

    1. I was a member of Unison for many years but now retired and living abroad, so no doubt out of touch with much of what is going on. However, I only had to see the attack on Beckett by the deplorable Hodge to think “he is definitely the one for the job then” – it is truly a badge of honour!

      1. Exactly Julia🥇🥇🥇 Not rocket science. Thanks for joining in. Many read but for many reasons are unable to, and/or afraid of expressing their views. We need to appreciate URGENTLY that if our views are criticised it is a benefit. We could be wrong. It’s a free service! By nature we lean towards confirming our beliefs. The Scientific Method involves SEARCHING out the opposite of our ‘beliefs’ in order to test them. Do they hold water?

        A helpful example would a group wanting to use a boat to get across water with sharks, crocodiles and other dangers unknown. The defeatist attitude is of course, just stay put forever because of this and that.

        It’s all well and good admiring all the lovely positive features of the boat; the potential speed, comforts, soft furnishings even. But is it not perilous to decide to ignore aspects which need fixing and CAN be fixed? Is it wise to them to ignore pointing put leaks because to do so constitutes an “attack”?
        Breathtakingly astonishing when observed with the fresh eyes of a comparative newbie.

        The “fragile” only want to hear nice cosy words, even if the nice words amount to nothing, or no words at all if not nice. That embarrassing attitude is called “being comradely” … heard it???

        Those absurd interpretations of “comradely” and “attack” of course results in repeated defeats for at least FIFTY years. “FORTY” we are now told re Superman The Invisible Turner… not counting the crumbs after 15 week pickets OUT of government, and those depending on his support STILL suffering fear and security, because he has only tinkered.

        Since we can all read about and see the steady deterioration in worker’s rights, conditions, real wages, and DESTRUCTION of our once world renowned industries, work of all sorts have been outsourced and exported abroad THROUGHOUT Superman Turner’s crusade which we are now hearing about.

        Turner’s superpowers are hardly worth a tinker’s cuss, unless one is devoted to being satisfied with crumbs after FIFTEEN WEEK pickets … almost FOUR MONTHS sometimes more, to get what is taken for granted by Socialist societies in Scandinavia NEXT DOOR!!! Pitiable low standards enforced on the many.

        What are pickets and protests? Noisy or silent appeals to those who rule. We can do better that appeal to others for crumbs. How did the Iraq protests go???

        Pickets are outward signs of inward belief that we have no choice but to remain at the mercy of the status quo. Why? Because the earth is flat, and “water NEVER runs uphill” … and a determination that our lot is to catch flies with honey” feed them MORE honey, then set them free to pollute and infect… and most crucially that we the “Left” can never be the government because EVERYTHING against us … except us. THAT’s a poverty of confidence, self-respect, self worth – Battered Wife Syndrome.

        That constant fear and creeping about like mice must be our lot, is a dire myth. Those who maintain the myths are amongst us. They may be sincere but their failure to pause and reflect is irresponsible. We are living through the results of that irresponsibility.

        Anyway Julia, only meant to say, thanks for speaking up. Telepathy is yet to be invented. And we need contrasting views to test our own. Of course agreement like yours is always welcome. But i value SH’s, Hodge’s , Watson’s and Maria’s too. Maria’s unwittingly provides conclusive evidence of constant “fear”, timidity, satisfaction with hoping for crumbs, holding back etc etc etc fear of this fear of that fear of the other.

        SH, Hodge and Watson’s are the most persuasive reasons to do the opposite

      2. Oh! and p.s. i’ve said above that water CAN be made to “run uphill” by MANY means.

        And, should you wish to “catch flies”, twelfth century Saint Bernard is wrong. Flies can indeed be caught with vinegar. Vinegar in a bottle attracts them. They fall in but can’t get out… unless people kindly and gently fish them out, clean them up and increase their opportunities to transport filth from the Blue Tories. Oh and vinegar is quite inexpensive. Why use expensive honey?

      3. Excellent Julia you are right. If Beckett upsets Hodge a extremely nasty woman than he would be the man for me..

      4. Julia, I agree completely. Anything that the ex kiddies secretary endorses has got to be questioned.

    2. Singpost, I quote you ” the others inspire no one, except you apparently” It is time for a reality check. How it is that if Turner and Graham inspire only me, Turner has almost 200 more nominations that the inspiring Beckett? FACT Beckett got even less nominations than Graham.
      How is it that among the industrial branches (the biggest) Turner comes on top, follow by Graham and Beckett comes last again?
      FACT just because Beckett inspire you and many readers here, it doesn’t mean that he inspires the bulk of Unite membership.
      FACT many of you commenting here don’t have a vote, but I do and you aren’t being persuasive. Hence, if you cannot persuade me despite being somewhat well disposed towards Beckett. How are you going to persuade the bulk of members that believe Beckett is going to get reckless with their levies?

      1. Maria, may i refer you to the minimum nominations Jeremy got combined to the likes of those who stood against him. They inspired comparatively no one but the desperately perpetually timid enablers of the same old same old.

        What Jeremy promised by DISTINCT contrast, inspired not only me to join when it swiftly became obvious that Mandelson directed cabal including every single one of the rejected ie Ummuna, Berger, Ellman, et al. Watson resigned in advance knowing he too was going to be rejected.

        Don’t therefore confuse nominations at this stage with inspiration nor the support of the many. Again learn from history. No need to go as far back as twelfth century St Bernard.

        He was wrong in his prioritising catching flies. He was incorrect that flies cannot be caught with vinegar. He was imprudent to advise expensive honey rather than cheap vinegar. His focus embodies the battered wife syndrome. And as we can see he a seed of catastrophe for all who struggle for change. He has managed to inspire you an inteligent, knowledgable and sincere person to repeat his flawed advice which promotes enduring timidity and unnecessary largesse with honey.
        As if that were not enough deficiencies in his advice, he assumed that it was unnecessary to stress to his devotees devoted to unforced endless fruitless appeasements – Having caught flies with expensive honey, DON’T lovingly, kindly and gently feed them yet more honey, strengthen them and set them free. Dispatch them Maria. Then Maria BIN them.

        Learn from recent history Maria. Learn that Jeremy defeated the much nominated status quo merchants. Sadly he too was caught. Caught not by honey but by the most cutting vinegar of his open enemies, friends and false ambitious friends. They are flies. BIN flies Maria. And learn how easy it is to be misunderstood or be unclear. St Bernard omitted STRESSING the need to BIN flies when caught. Twelve centuries later …

      2. Maria
        They could be asked to defund the Labour party if Temporary Embarrassment does not honour his leadership election promises and reinstate JC
        Now we both know that’s not going to happen, so you have to rely on your own judgement
        But that pales into insignificance if they refuse to nominate a single candidate

      3. Nominations that came from meetings that excluded members? You OK with that sort of democracy? Turner needs to win the election with fair play and a decent manifesto against the other three candidates.

  3. Workers have zero representation anywhere now. Are all the above wasters double vaxxed, petrified, and desperate for our children to queue up for the Big Pharma needle? 💉

  4. Meanwhile back at the ranch, that ‘Nasty piece of work’ and inveterate liar Boris Johnson, is trying to squirm his way out of the Brexit mess he got us into by attempting to blame the EU!

    1. JackT
      When push comes to shove we know whose side the EU are on
      Who is currently printing the most money per capita
      USA EU or UK
      Yanks Varoufakis stated recently, the ECB policy of quantitative easing for the 0.1% has now become ‘slightly insane’
      Very soon we the people will own everything
      So don’t take the casters off JC just yet, we may yet get to wheel him into Downing Street
      As honorary Chair and Spiritual leader

      1. Doug, the EU consists of all its people not just the political leaders, some of whom will disagree with each other. One of the reasons it was formed was to unite people for their common good and to prevent squabbles which could lead to war. Britain of course led by right wing fanatics has just blown an almighty hole in it as we often do.

        Anyone who wants more of the same jingoistic flag-waving patriotic clap-trap which gave us Brexit can tune in to GB News which began its pollution of our screens tonight.

  5. Jack…the liar Boris Johnson cannot solve a colonial occupation problem even if he wanted to.Like all successive governments of Conservative and Labour they cant solve a problem that haunts all British Government.Tinker and agree with the unionist population “that they are British,go along with the belief that they are not born and bred in the Island of Ireland and thats not working either.I am afraid that at the start of the marching season in Ulster the unionist population will march to show the “Natives” that they are British and own it.You have far more than a Brexit mess here jack as the hard men and women over the next few weeks and years will show us.

    1. Joseph, I agree. The Brexit mess was totally predictable. Johnson knew it but his tactic as in everything he touches is to bluster, lie, and barge his way through. Even the Good Friday Agreement which Blair negotiated was just a way of kicking the can down the road but at least it stopped the violence. Northern Ireland represents a throw-back to the colonialist mentality of those who ran Britian decades ago. Johnson and many of the Unionists are a ‘modern’ microcosm of that. This is only one of the many downsides, including the possible breakup of the UK, which will result from Brexit. Many of the main Brexit protagonists knew exactly what they were doing. Others fell for the jingoistic hype.

      1. JackT
        What we have here is a failure to communicate
        More than that a failure to honour a vote when you lose, thats 💯 anti democratic and deserved to be punished

      2. JackT
        If its any consolation the Tory/ Brexit party days are numbered, they don’t believe in democracy at all
        Which is why they lie, cheat and rob us blind
        An example would be, if Akela announced her retirement, within 24 hours cheap and nasties at Conservative Central would have her replacement lined up
        We know its true because our party is full of them
        Tories that is not Akela’s
        I gave up when I moved upto the Scouts and discovered their Akela was a bloke
        Loved Cubs, spent most of the time haring around the place trying to kill each other
        In the Scouts they insisted on trying to teach you stuff
        Dib dib

  6. If you want to lead a major union then you want to be part of a movement that is working night and day for a Socialist Labour government
    That is not possible until we remove Red Tories
    Any doubts and your clearly in the wrong party

    1. Doug, do you mean Socialist leaning members of the Tory Party? If not, you should be referring to Blue Labour i.e. Tory leaning members of the Labour Party.

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