Deputy TUC General Secretary dodges question on coordinated February 1st union strike

18 January 2023, 22:07 | Updated: 18 January 2023, 23:16

TUC Kate Bell defends the 'national day to protect the right to strike.'

By Abbie Reynolds

The Trade Union Congress's Assistant General Secretary refused to answer how involved the TUC was in organising the coordinated February 1st strike.

The Conservative government have introduced new legislation to prevent workers from taking strike action, it has been viewed as controversial legislation and many unions have expressed frustration.

READ MORE: Grant Shapps introduces controversial anti-strike legislation to curb public sector walkouts

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) Assistant General Secretary, Kate Bell, spoke to Tom Swarbrick about the "national day" which TUC have encouraged as a day of protest "to protect the right to strike" in retaliation to the legislation.

This national day which is set to be February 1st will see sectors from the NHS and railways to education and civil service taking industrial action.

Tom tried to prise a direct answer from Ms Bell: "Did you help unions organise to go out in this fashion on that day specifically?"

"Well look, as I said, the TUC always has discussions about how industrial action can be most effective," she responded diplomatically.

Ms Bell went on to say the TUC was passionate about "defending that essential right to strike", insisting "unions have been pushed into this action".

Not satisfied by her response Tom pressed Kate Bell to admit to the extent of the TUC's role in the February strike.

"We've had a number of discussions about when to take industrial action," came another vague response.

"It feels like they're [the government] launching a coordinated attack on working people," Kate Bell told Tom, suggesting the unions are merely reflecting the government's behaviour.

READ MORE: 'Total nurse walkout': Nurse of 40 years says only a walkout will force govt response

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