Unions must not return to days of strikes

The CBI warned unions against a return to confrontational relationships with employers last week following the news that strike ballots have more than doubled in the past year.

Susan Anderson, the CBI’s new director of HR policy, described the development as disappointing. “Good relationships between employers and employees are built on partnership, which should mean working together to achieve shared objectives,” she said.

“We hope that unions seek to build positive relationships with employers, without resorting to threats of strikes.”

The TUC’s annual Trade Union Trends survey showed that unions organised 983 ballots in the year to May 2000, compared to 464 in the previous year.

However, the proportion of ballots resulting in full-blown industrial action dropped, suggesting that unions are using the threat of strike action as a bargaining tool.

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