Union official charged with £41k theft

Posted by Admin on April 02, 2012
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A FORMER union official has appeared in court accused of stealing £41,680 of the organisation’s money.

Ann Sharp, 54, who was branch treasurer for Hartlepool Borough Council branch of union Unison is charged with taking the cash over a period of two-and-a-half years.

Council worker Sharp is alleged to have stolen the money between December 2007 and July last year when she was seconded to the union from the council and was joint secretary and treasurer.

She did not enter any pleas to the four counts of theft she is charged with when she appeared at Hartlepool Magistrates’ Court.

Unison provides negotiating and bargaining support for 850,000 members across the UK, including around 1,750 employed by Hartlepool Borough Council.

Contributions to the union start from just 28p a week and rise depending on salary. A member earning between £17,000-£20,000 a year will contribute £11.50 per month, or £138 a year.

Magistrates said they could not deal with the case because of the large amount of money allegedly stolen.

Sharp, of Pannell Place, Hartlepool, must be back at court in eight weeks time when the case will formally be committed to the crown court.

Article from Hartlepool Mail. Click here to read online.

Fleeced by the unions

Posted by Admin on April 01, 2012
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WHEN militant union chiefs are out to destroy the Government, their weapon of first choice is the misery they have the power to inflict on millions.
We saw it in the 1970s. We saw it again in Len McCluskey’s call to wreck the Olympics and his threat to bring Britain to its knees by drying up fuel supplies.

The worst-hit victims are working people prevented from going about their daily business.

So it would be madness for a system to exist where those people compulsorily but unwittingly fund the very unions plotting to bring them hardship.

Incredibly, that is exactly Britain’s situation.

The Sun has discovered Unite officials get at least £4million a year of taxpayers’ money. It could be as high as £10million.

The public sector, for which we foot the bill, has to pay the equivalent of 154 full-time salaries to Unite officials for working on union business.

Some work full-time for Unite. They do nothing else — yet WE pay them. Some of what they do has merit. A lot of it is politically-driven rabble rousing and propaganda.

Why do we pay for any of it?

Unite is a huge union with bulging coffers. It can afford to pay McCluskey a handsome six-figure salary.

It can afford the £5million it has given Labour since the unions installed Ed Miliband as leader — effectively a present from taxpayers, it now turns out.

None of this would be quite so repugnant were it not for Unite being engaged in a nakedly political war to topple the Tory-led Government and install its man Miliband in No10.

Taxpayers should not fund Unite, or any unions. They have millions of members paying subscriptions for that.

It is time the Government acted now to cut them adrift.

A sick rip-off

An article from today’s Sun newspaper. Click here to read it online

Camden council prioritises “pilgrims” over children’s play services

Posted by Admin on March 22, 2012
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Camden council has rejected a 3% decrease in council tax proposed by the Conservative group within the council. The Labour leader of the council, Cllr Nasim Ali claimed the decrease was not possible, due to central funding cuts. While at the same time his council maintains a building solely for the use of Trade Union staff.

At a time when residents finances are under a great deal of pressure the local Labour Party which receives both income and support from the unions choose to spend their residents money on employing full-time union officials rather than maintaining public services. Last year the council considered closing all council-run play centres, holiday provision and breakfast and after-school clubs in schools, to make savings of between £80m and £100m over three years.

Parents fear the cuts will hit some of the borough’s most vulnerable children. Some mothers have told the Labour-run council they will have to give up work.

One said: “My children need a safe environment to stay while I work. If the play centre closes they will be on the streets, subjected to all kinds of bad influence.”

The condemned playgrounds are Caversham Transitions Project; Regent’s Park Transitions Project; Weedington Road Transitions Project; Fusion Transitions Project; Kilburn Grange Park Adventure Playground; and the Temporary Accommodation Play Project.

Camden Council cabinet member for children, schools and families, Councillor Larraine Revah, said, ‘We have had to make some difficult decisions in this financial climate and we just couldn’t afford to keep the play service running as it was.’

At a time when local services are feeling the pinch Camden Council still hasn’t given up its three full time “pilgrims”, or the building which is provided; with cleaning and maintenance to the unions.

Rob Halfon is Right

Posted by Admin on March 16, 2012
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Robert Halfon MP has written an important pamphlet today for Demos about the historic and future relationship between the Conservative Party and the Trade Union movement. In essence he argues for a more positive attitude of Conservatives towards trade unions and a recognition that the trade union leadership are not always representative of either their constituent trade unions or their memberships.

We agree.
We have been struck by how many ordinary trade unionists are appalled by the abuses of their leadership. They are the ones who tell us the stories of individuals who rip off the taxpayer through abusing the facility time arrangements. They are the ones who tell us the stories of the lavish salaries and expense accounts. It is those trade unionists who we must stand up for.

There are also moderate trade unions who are let down by the trade union movement. Take the “Employees Representatives” trade union of London Bus drivers who have been attacked and reviled by Unite just for refusing to recognize the closed shop and who now find that they are disadvantaged by the privileged position enjoyed by Unite’s taxpayer funded resources. This is unfair and needs to stop.

Or take Clarke Carlisle, the head of the Professional Footballers’ Association Union, which is affiliated to the TUC, who denounced on Question Time the practice of full time Pilgrims in the NHS.

These are the true moderates. The hard left leadership of the TUC and some of their affiliated unions should wake up and realize that their union members are taxpayers too. They don’t want their tax money wasted on shop stewards who are paid by the taxpayer and then use that position to leapfrog up the union movement because they have the time to attend all the union meeting and hobnob with the powers that be – all at the taxpayers expense. Meanwhile the union dues which are supposed to pay for representation gets wasted on posh new Union offices for fat cat union leaders salaries and large expense accounts, while the tax payer picks up the day to day costs of running the trade unions.

The Labour Party has positioned itself as the supporters of the Union Barons. That leaves space for the Conservative Party to position itself as the supporter of the ordinary union member.

You can read Rob Halfon’s article in The Telegraph

Peterborough “Pilgrims” maintain funding due to a 2.95% council tax increase.

Posted by Admin on March 08, 2012
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The TPA have found that Peterborough City Council who plan to increase their council tax by 2.95%, out of necessity plan to maintain the funding for their full time UNISON representatives.

The TPA has now identified two full-time tax payer funded UNISON activists within the council. Their high salaries mean that the people of Peterborough are feeling the pinch in order for the council to channel more money into trade union activities.

Rona Hendry the UNISON branch secretary will cost tax payers over £43,600 in the next twelve months. Her branch Assistant Secretary, Mark Burn salary is also fully taxpayer funded, costing Peterborough residents £29,700 a year.

A member of Peterborough City Council; Cllr Irene Walsh explained when you take into account the benefits provided by the council, including free office facilities, the estimated bill to the Peterborough tax payer is £83,500 – 48% more than what was suggested by the TPA in November, all the while honest to goodness parishoners are forced into taking out pay day loans to make ends meet.

To read the full TPA article and see the letter from Cllr Irene Walsh click here

TURC Parliamentary Council Member Fiona Bruce MP leads Westminster Hall debate on trade union reform

Posted by Admin on March 01, 2012
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You can also read a review and endorsement of TURC by Tim Montgomerie on the ConservativeHome website here.

Hancock tells Councils to use new laws to stop paying full time union officials

Posted by Admin on February 24, 2012
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Click here to read Christopher Hope’s article in today’s Daily Telegraph interviewing Conservative MP Matthew Hancock about trade union reform. In the article Hancock is quoted as saying, ““Public money should pay for public services not [full time officials]. The Localism Act is the chance for all Councils to end this unfairness and ensure taxpayers’ money is spent on services not subsidies.”

Unison upset as Swindon Council takes action on taxpayer subsidised union activists

Posted by Admin on February 21, 2012
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Click here to read the Swindon Advertiser report.

You can also listen to Aidan Burley MP being interviewed on BBC Radio Swindon below:

TURC Launch Party in photos…

Posted by Admin on January 25, 2012
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Preview of Our Launch Video Tonight

Posted by TURCpress on January 24, 2012
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