28 Jan 2011

Majority of NSSN Officers resign en-bloc

At a meeting immediately following Saturday 22nd January's NSSN anti-cuts conference, the majority of NSSN/Shop Stewards Network national officers-all of those not in the Socialist Party- have resigned.
This is the statement of four of these officers: Dave Chapple, Bob Archer, George Binette and Becca Kirkpatrick:
“1.We are all NSSN national officers. We have decided that we cannot continue to be activists in an organisation that, following the conference decision on 22nd January, is now controlled by the Socialist Party.
The NSSN was established to become a strong independent organisation of trades union activists, with trades council and trades union branch affiliates.
Its meetings cannot function as independent voting bodies if all major decisions are to be taken beforehand by the Socialist Party.
None of our trades council or trade union branch affiliates can continue to be linked to the NSSN on that basis.
2. 22nd January’s NSSN conference decision to set up a separate NSSN-led anti-cuts campaign-the third such organisation that exists-is a major strategic mistake for our part of the trade union movement.

It makes unity of the national anti-cuts movement harder not easier.

The essential NSSN anti-cuts task, of stiffening the resolve of the trades unions, locally and nationally, to fight cuts through co-ordinated strike action, will be set aside or de-prioritised. 

It will ensure that the regional and local SSN groups-already weak and struggling in the main- will wither as they transfer time and energy to establishing-or duplicating-local anti-cuts campaigns.

At the Steering Committee of December 4th, six national officers and EVERY NON-SP STEERING COMMITTEE MEMBER voted against this proposal, yet the Socialist Party has ignored this feeling despite our further appeals, knowing full well that our continued participation in the NSSN would be intolerable.
3. Ninety NSSN activists met after the end of that Saturday's conference and unanimously decided to continue the work of trade union activists' solidarity on an organised national basis. Please get in touch."
Dave Chapple, NSSN Chair; George Binnette, NSSN Treasurer;
Bob Archer, NSSN Communications Officer; Becca Kirkpatrick, NSSN Affiliations Officer 

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