Britain’s largest trade union, Unite, issues warning to Labour candidates who fail to “act as socialists”.
Howard Beckett, the assistant general secretary of Unite, has told Labour council election candidates that the union will not support them if they “act like a Tory”.
He said: “If you act like a Tory, Unite in the West Midlands will treat you like a Tory”.
Howard Beckett is also currently Unite the Union’s acting regional secretary for the West Midlands.
His remarks come from a speaking engagement organised by the Socialist Party, and come after Mr Beckett had previously condemned Birmingham City Council’s handling of the city’s bin strike at the Labour Party conference in September.
Unite is affiliated to the Labout Party and represents the striking Birmingham bin workers.
At the Socialist Party event this week, Howard Beckett said that “our responsibility” is to “call on Labour councils to act as socialists,” – according to the report published on the Socialist Party website.
Mr Beckett said:
It’s no good for them to act as complicit agents of the treasury, no good for them to hide behind budgets.
I will say clearly to all in the West Midlands who claim to be Labour but talk like Tories: if you act like a Tory, Unite in the West Midlands will treat you like a Tory.
If justice and socialism is not the drive for Birmingham councillors to behave as Labour, then perhaps next May’s city council elections will be.
Because Unite in Birmingham will not support any Tory, even those who are labelled Labour.
The event took place in London and was advertised by the Socialist Party as an event for “students, trade unionists, Corbynistas, socialists and those who are socialist-curious”.