Zarah Sultana perfectly deconstructs government’s anti-strike legislation

"The problem is bad bosses and a Tory government, that is running a rigged economy."

Zarah Sultana

Labour MP Zarah Sultana perfectly took apart the government’s anti-strike legislation, exposing it for what it is, an assault on workers rights.

The MP for Coventry South was speaking at yesterday’s emergency demo organised by trade unions outside Downing Street, as the Minimum Services Bill underwent its second reading in Parliament. Under the proposed anti-strike laws, bosses will be empowered to sue unions and sack staff in crucial sectors if minimum service levels aren’t maintained. The legislation covers health, education, rail, fire and borders, with the government insisting that it wants to ‘provide minimum safety and service levels’.

Sultana told the crowd at yesterday’s protest that the government’s anti-strike legislation was an ‘anti-worker bill that threatens the civil liberties of us all’ and that the government had gone from clapping nurses to now wanting to sack nurses.

She said: “This new law would see nurses, teachers, firefighters and other key workers face the sack if they go on strike. It’s apparently about safety they say but safety isn’t mentioned a single time in this bill.

“They say it’s about bringing us in line with other European nations but Britain already has some of the worst anti-trade union laws in the Western world. And no matter what s*** they say, whatever lies they spread, this is not about resolving industrial disputes.”

She added: “Really it’s about shifting the balance once again, weakening the power of trade unions, weakening the power of workers and making it even easier for bosses to exploit workers.”

Sultana called for demonstrations to defeat the bill, telling the crowd that it’s about ‘winning the argument in our communities, in our workplaces and on the streets.”

She said: “It’s saying to your neighbours that if your pay is too low and your bills are too high, if you’re struggling to make ends meet, if you can’t get a doctors appointment, the problem isn’t workers. The problem isn’t refugees. The problem isn’t trans people. The problem is bad bosses and a Tory government, that is running a rigged economy.”

Basit Mahmood is editor of Left Foot Forward

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