By Monitor

IS the trade union movement in Britain dead? I ask this question because the once all powerful unions in Britain appear to be totally ineffective and are unable to stop the thousands of British jobs which are being lost to the Far East. It is no longer just manufacturing these days even the giant insurance companies are moving out. Literally thousands of jobs have been lost this year alone. You would have thought that the trade unions would have taken some form of action. But nothing. Not even the government appears to be willing to tackle the problem. If Britain is to enjoy low unemployment this new jobs drain must be stopped.

We all know the reason. Employment costs are much lower in the Far East than they are in Europe. But this loss of jobs shouldn't be accepted as just “a sign of the times.” Tony Blair mentioned the problem during his speech to the Labour Party conference but he didn't offer any solution. If Europe is to remain competitive this loss of jobs must be stopped. So-called British companies will soon have a large part of their workforce serving their domestic market based in other countries. I would say that this is one of the biggest challenges facing the trade union movement in Britain at the moment. It is a shame that they appear to be totally ineffective to stop the slide.

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