David proti Goljatom

Pozitivne sindikalne zgodbe, tako domače kot tuje, so zmeraj pomembne: tokrat delimo zapis o britanski delavski organizaciji IWGB – Independent Workers Union of Great Britain, ki se na Otoku ukvarja z združevanjem in zastopanjem prekarnih delavk in delavcev. 

The University of London employs a number of outsourcing companies. The strikers, who are striking under the slogan “Back in House”, want to become direct employees of the university on equal terms and conditions. Most are members of one of the country’s newest unions, the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB), small but rapidly growing, established in 2012 and now with about 2,500 members. It has just constituted its eighth branch, the IWGB Electricians’ Workers branch.

It’s a gnat compared with giant unions such as Unison, which has 1.3 million members, but IWGB is attracting attention because it is beginning to carry a clout hugely disproportionate to its size. It is a non-bureaucratic, grassroots, “bottom-up” organisation. At a time when only one in five workers aged 25 to 34 are in a union, less than 14% of the private sector is unionised and the TUC general secretary, Frances O’Grady, concedes that the image of unions is “male, pale and stale”, IWGB is recruiting strongly from previously neglected, non-English-speaking immigrant workers. It is championing the rights of the lowest paid in the most precarious jobs, the young and those outsourced to private companies and in the gig economy. IWGB and its sister union United Voices of the World are taking on the multimillion-pound giants of the tech and app business world, such as Deliveroo, to win the most basic rights for their members – the minimum wage, sick pay and pensions. As the TUC celebrates its 150th anniversary, the IWGB could provide clues as to what the trade union movement as a whole needs to do – not just to survive, but to thrive.

Več v članku: The tiny union beating the gig economy giants