Unite and USW have joined to form world’s first global trade union representing 3m workers across Europe and North America
The UK’s biggest union is joining with the largest private sector union in the USA to form the world’s first global trade union.
The union of Unite and USW will be called Workers Uniting. The new global union will represent 3m working people from every industrial sector in Britain, Ireland, the USA, Canada and the Caribbean.
“This union is crucial for challenging the growing power of global capital.
Leo Gerard, USW president
The unions said the agreement was a response to the challenges of globalisation. In particular, the casualisation of employment and reductions in pay and conditions for millions of working people in North America and Europe.
The agreement will lead to the synchronisation of collective bargaining in companies with operations on both sides of the Atlantic, warned the union. It will also enable joint political campaigning. Unite is the Labour Party’s biggest affiliate and donor and the USW is a major contributor to and supporter of the Democratic Party in America.
“There will be no more no go areas for trade unions.
Tony Woodley, joint general secretary of Unite
Derek Simpson, joint general secretary of Unite said: ‘The political and economic power of multi national companies is formidable. They are able to play one nation’s workers off against another to maximise profits. They do the same with governments hence the growing gap between the rich and the rest of us. With this agreement we can finally begin the process of closing that gap.’
Leo Gerard, USW president said: ‘This union is crucial for challenging the growing power of global capital. “Globalization has given financiers license to exploit workers in developing countries at the expense of our members in the developed world. Only global solidarity among workers can overcome this sort of global exploitation wherever it occurs.’
Tony Woodley, joint general secretary of Unite said: ‘This agreement will enable us to use our considerable resources to organise workers from new and growing sectors at home and in developing counties. There will be no more no go areas for trade unions.’