TUAEU supporters from across the country met in London recently to plan the fight for winning a leave vote in the upcoming referendum within the labour movement.
The group’s Parliamentary adviser Kelvin Hopkins MP recorded growing opposition to the EU in the Labour Party and wider progressive movements.
“Holding a free vote among Labour MPs at the time of the referendum will be important” said Hopkins.
TUAEU delegates to recent conferences in Europe reported on intensifying opposition to the EU throughout the continent.
“Greece’s remaining welfare provision is about to be dismantled. The majority elected, anti-austerity Socialist alliance in Portugal is being banned from office because the ruling elite thinks allegiance to the EU is more important than national independence despite democracy” said one delegate.
The Trade Union Bill in Britain is also part of an EU wide wave of renewed attacks on remaining labour and trade union rights. Even the precious labour code in France is being threatened and collective-bargaining arrangements in many EU states have been central targets of the EU Commission’s austerity plans.
TUAEU chair Doug Nicholls said: “The penny is dropping at last in the British trade union and labour movement and the left.
“The myth of a social Europe based on neoliberal austerity and the destruction of nation states is exposed for all to see. Trade unionists and socialists historically have often led the struggles for democracy and national independence.
“We will have to do so again and ensure that we lead the most successful campaign against the most undemocratic institution in the world. The EU is epitomised by its central mission to create the TTIP and the complete corporate domination of a continent.
“It is time we shaped a new internationalist path in our part of the world and built genuine co-operation between nations as with ALBA in Latin America,” he said.
He went on to criticise recent US involvement in our politics with its trade Minister saying the US wanted Britain in the EU.
“No doubt the US will be covertly funding the pro-EU side to the hilt along with the Tory grandees and a few ne’er-do-wells who once told us that joining the EU single currency would be our saviour,” he said.
Along with the Labour leave campaign TUAEU will be protesting at the conference of the CBI on November 9.
Engineer and TUAEU treasurer Manuel Bueno commented: “British industry, agriculture and fishing have all perished within the EU and we are now a net importer from EU countries with a huge balance of trade deficit.
“Under the EU regional settlement arrangements Germany got engineering and manufacturing while Britain got financial services-the city of London profiting without producing.
“Outside of the EU we will have a chance to exert governmental power to reinvest in our industries and take back our railways and utilities into public ownership. These are precisely the kind of things EU membership prohibits us from doing,” he said.
*Labour leave and TUAEU will be protesting outside of the CBI conference being held in the Grosvenor Hotel on Park Lane in London on November 9 from 8.00am-12 noon.