trade unions strike
Image: © Nick Efford via Wikimedia Commons

Trade unions say May’s Brexit deal should TUC off

The Trade Union Congress wants a second referendum

The Trade Union Congress (TUC) will campaign for a second referendum unless the government strikes a new Brexit deal that puts workers first.

What it means: A trade union is where lots of workers group together to push for better working conditions against their employers. About 6.23 million Brits belong to one. According to at least one trade union bigwig, members of trade unions voted to Leave the EU “in their droves”. So the fact that lots of these same people now want another vote is remarkable. It suggests they think Theresa May’s government has done a piss-poor job of organising our exit from the EU, and that unemployment will go up if we leave without a deal.

At the moment, a no-deal Brexit looks pretty likely, because May says she won’t offer a better deal than the Chequers proposal she unveiled in July, and the EU says it won’t accept that deal. TUC is worried that a no-deal Brexit will result in big global companies like Airbus, BMV and Jaguar moving jobs out of Britain. (Airbus has already hinted that it’ll do this). It would like the government to push back our leave date from March 2019, to give May more time to sort out a deal with the EU.

TUC’s stance is particularly important because it is closely linked to the opposing Labour Party, and is often believed to have a lot of influence over their policy. Labour is not yet demanding a public vote on Brexit, although it has said it should be 'on the table'.

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