2014 European Parliament Elections NO2EU - Yes To Workers Rights

To: All Branches, Regional Councils and Regional Organisers

10th September 2013
Circular No. NP236/13

Dear Colleague


I am writing to urge you to support the RMT backed NO2EU – YES TO WORKERS’ RIGHTS campaign which is standing candidates in the 2014 European Elections.

This campaign is being supported after careful consideration by the Council of Executives.

Any candidates successfully elected to the European Parliament will take their seats on a “vote us in to get us out” basis.

A meeting of the Council of Executives on 3rd April 2013, considered the following motion from the Manchester and North West Regional Council:

“This Regional Council congratulates the RMT and our then Council of Executives on its involvement in N02EU Yes to Democracy at the last European Elections.

Noting EU Directives that privatise rail services and other directives that undermine other public services and workers’ rights, our Regional Council believes that our involvement in N02EU was important in educating people to the threat of EU directives, the capitalist nature of the European Union and its privatisation and liberalisation agenda.

We note that since that European election we have had the international banking collapse and with it the cyclical failure of capitalism – at this time the EU is leading the campaign for international austerity with attacks on public services and welfare and forced privatisations.

We note the current rise of UKIP in certain opinion polls and that this party has done reasonably well in recent British Parliamentary By-Elections however we caution our members and others that UKIP is a capitalist party to the right of the Tories – UKIP is neither in favour of workers’ rights, public services or welfare – if people are looking for an alternative UKIP isn’t it!

With European elections ahead of us, the Manchester and North West Regional Council of the RMT calls upon the Council of Executives to open up dialogue between the previous constituent parts of N02EU Yes to Democracy to see if an electoral challenge at the forthcoming Euro elections would be feasible on the basis of campaigning against cuts and austerity, for Public Services, jobs-and welfare, for workers’ rights and against privatisation and liberalisation and for British withdrawal from the bosses’ European Union.

Any candidates elected would, once again, refuse to take their seats in a parliament that we don't believe in and which has no powers anyway – these should be the principles for any RMT involvement in an electoral challenge.”
In response, the Council of Executives adopted the following report of the Political, Transport and Liberation Sub Committee on 2nd May 2013:

    “That we note the resolution and that we instruct the General Secretary to call a meeting of all the constituents of the 2009 (NO2EU Yes to Democracy) campaign and TUSC representatives on the feasibility of standing candidates in the 2014 elections. The General Secretary to put a report of this meeting in front of the Council of Executives after this meeting has taken place. The Political Sub Committee to attend on behalf of the RMT.”

    I reported to the C of E held on 23rd July that the Political Sub Committee had met on two occasions with NO2EU Yes to Democracy and that there was a consensus that all the regions in the European elections should be contested.  I advised that there may have to be a slight change of name to the campaign as we are moving towards a referendum - but with Labour, Tories and Liberals all supporting the European Union, the only choice is the right wing UKIP and racist BNP or run a campaign on a progressive basis for workers.

The August statutory meeting of the Council of Executives adopted the following report of the Political Sub Committee:
    “That we note the Political Sub Committee have met to discuss this campaign on three occasions and we note the campaign name has now changed to ‘NO2EU – YES TO WORKERS RIGHTS.’
    We note a General Appeal will be made to raise £150,000 to allow the campaign to stand in all the eleven regions (although the campaign will not stand candidates in Northern Ireland), to pay for a leaflet to be delivered to every house hold, a party political broadcast, and to pay to support part time workers for the campaign.
    We ask that the campaign be launched at the TUC and agree to donate £55,000 out of the political fund to pay the deposits of the candidates and we also allow Branches and Regional Councils to support the campaign from their political funds.
    Finally we ask that Regional Committees be set up to select candidates and that if there are any valid complaints of unfair selection then the national committee has the right to intervene.”
    The campaign has been successfully launched at the TUC Congress and more information will be made available shortly.

Yours sincerely

Bob Crow
General Secretary