Motion for Trade Union to Support TSN
This branch deplores the continuing racism and disadvantage experienced by Roma and Traveller communities in the UK.
Motion to support the Traveller Solidarity Network
The branch notes:
1. That discrimination and harassment of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities is considered a safe form of racism in the UK
2. That there are an estimated 300,000 Traveller, Gypsy and Roma people in Britain
3. That Gypsies, Roma and Travellers are amongst the most marginalised minorities in the UK
4. The violent eviction of 83 families from Dale Farm, a former scrapyard owned by Travellers and home to almost 1000 people for more than 30 years.
5. That Basildon Council spent £7million making 83 Traveller families homeless
6. That more than 90% of Travellers planning applications are initially rejected by local government authorities, compared to the 20% national average [Source: Commission for Racial Equality].
The branch believes:
1. That Unison stands opposed to all forms of racism, both direct and institutionalised
2. That the continuing racism and disadvantage experienced by Roma and Traveller communities in the UK is unacceptable and must end
3. That the eviction of Traveller sites a form of ethnic cleansing which results in Travellers being forced onto the road against their will and Traveller children being pulled out of education
4. That the government cuts are hitting the most disadvantaged groups hardest, who are now paying a high price for an economic crisis they have not caused
5. That the rise of self-organised campaigning Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities is to be welcomed, as is the development of support organisations such as Traveller Solidarity Network
6. That support for these organisations is wholly consistent with Unison’s vision of a society based on justice and equality
The branch resolves:
1. To actively support Gypsy, Roma and Traveller rights
2. To advertise the Traveller Solidarity Network to member’s official publications and communications, and to urge our members support
3. To donate £100 to the Traveller Solidarity Network
4. To take up the campaign against anti-traveller racism as part of Unison’s general anti-racism work and to encourage and support members in confronting employers when asked to perform tasks which our members consider acts of racism against Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities
5. To support the international day of action called for Roma Nation Day on April 8th 2012, and future international days in support of Gypsy, Roma and Traveller rights
6. To send this motion to Unison Black Members Conference and the National Delegate Conference suitably amended and with a donation recommendation in resolves 3 to be amended to £500
We welcome the rise of self-organised campaigning and resistance by these communities, and the development of broader support organisations such as Dale Farm Solidarity and the Traveller Solidarity Network. We believe that support for these organisations is wholly in line with our Unite vision of a society based on justice and equality.
We therefore resolve to:
- Affiliate to the Traveller Solidarity Network
- Pay TSN’s annual TU branch affiliation fee of £50 and donate a further £xx towards campaign expenses.
- Actively support Roma and Traveller rights, including publicising events organised by the Traveller Solidarity Network to our members and urging their support
We further resolve to send this motion, appropriately amended, to the Regional Committee (requesting that they affiliate and forward to the Executive Council).