Tuesday 11 September 2012
Responding to Ed Balls' speech to the TUC in Brighton this morning, UNISON General Secretary, Dave Prentis, said:
“Ed Balls gave a business-like speech to Congress today, dealing with many of the issues that trade union members are concerned about, including jobs and the economy.
“It was heartening to hear that there is a vision developing amongst the shadow cabinet, particularly in some of the areas that we have been campaigning on, such as dealing with the banks, building affordable homes, getting young people back into work and investing for growth in schools, roads and transport.
“It was good, too, to hear that he recognises that Labour won’t get elected just because the Tories are bad. And that he recognises the need for a credible alternative, for policies that working people relate to and will want to vote for.
“We at UNISON don’t want a return to 80’s either. That is exactly where the Tories want to take us. We want a decent future for our children, quality public services that take care of the sick and elderly and fair pay for the workers who deliver them.
“We would like to have heard more from Ed Balls that Labour has a clear understanding of just how hard working people are really struggling. If he really understood the massive impact of a three year pay freeze on families struggling to pay for food and fuel, or forced to turn to pay-day loans where interest can be a terrifying 4000% - he, too, would be calling for an end to the pay freeze.
“Of course we need to get people back into work, but that cannot be done by cutting the pay and conditions of public service workers.”
UNISON UK press release: