“I have seen the difference an outstanding trade union leader can make, & it’s why I am supporting Steve Turner for Unite General Secretary.”Grahame Morris MP
By Grahame Morris MP
As the Chair of the Unite Parliamentary Group of MPs, I know strong trade unions are needed now more than ever by working people. For over 40 years, I have seen the difference trade unions make to the lives of our family, friends, and communities.
The Covid pandemic shows the importance of active trade unions, decisive leaders and effective local reps who have protected workers’ jobs, pay, terms and conditions. I have seen the difference an outstanding trade union leader can make, and it’s why I am supporting Steve Turner for Unite General Secretary.
Steve has led Unite’s response to the pandemic, negotiating with the Government for a furlough scheme that protected members incomes’ and safeguarded millions of jobs. When the NHS was on the verge of being overwhelmed, in the darkest days of the pandemic, Steve pulled together the consortium that established the ventilator challenge, delivering the lifesaving equipment our NHS needed.
We need proven leadership, and Steve is the only candidate for Unite General Secretary to safeguard and secure thousands of new jobs for our region through his work with Nissan to establish a £1bn plan for the UK’s first electric battery gigafactory.
Steve has described the climate emergency as “the challenge of our generation”, as we make the transition to a clean and green economy. Steve’s determination to deliver new green jobs, investment, and skills in our industrial heartlands will make him the greenest General Secretary in the trade union movement.
Through working with Unite members in our key industries, steel, automotive, oil, gas and energy, as well as construction, and food and drinks manufacturing, Steve is shaping Unite’s strategy to build a fairer economy based on full employment, better pay and conditions, employment rights, equality, education and skills, alongside a better environment and future for our children and planet.
Steve is forward thinking and recognises that you cannot create fair and safe workplaces, in an unfair, unequal society. Therefore, fighting for those out of work and families living with in-work poverty for whom the £20-a-week increase in Universal Credit has been a lifeline will remain a priority under his leadership.
Steve is the only candidate in this election to speak up for benefit claimants and explain why trade unions must be the voice for those forced to live on some of the worst levels of social security due to endemic low pay and work insecurity in our society.
I have heard speculation by commentators that this election is about the union’s role in the Labour Party. Steve is highly respected in the Labour Party, but this election isn’t about politics. Steve has a history of working and negotiating with people irrespective of their politics, and he has one aim – to represent and advance the cause of working people and Unite members.
Steve is the only candidate with the knowledge, experience and plans to strengthen our union through improving workplace representation, campaign for change, and working with politicians of all parties across the UK to deliver the policies needed to improve the lives of working people.
Steve Turner has my support. He is the strong decisive leader our trade union needs.
- Grahame Morris is the Labour MP for Easington. This article was originally published by The Northern Echo at https://www.thenorthernecho.co.uk/news/19492705.grahame-morris-mp-backing-lead-unite/