Unite the union and TSSA have today (1 May) announced that they are starting discussions to form Britain and Ireland’s first-ever cross-transport union, organising and representing workers across all forms of the transport industry.
United Left Activists in North East, Yorkshire & Humberside welcome this news and look forward to working with TSSA activists and members to secure a strong union representing members across all areas of Transport Sector.
The combination will bring together Unite’s members in buses, air transport, road haulage, docks and waterways with TSSA’s 23,000 members in rail and travel.
Unite general secretary Len McCluskey said: “I welcome the opportunity to bring TSSA into the Unite family, making our union stronger.
“For the first time, workers across all forms of transport will be united in a single union – that can only help hard-pressed employees, and put big transport companies on notice to shape up.
“TSSA’s proud traditions in the rail sector, its present commitment to organising workers and the strong industrial logic make this a natural step to take.”
TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes said: “This will secure a very powerful voice for TSSA members well into the future.
“As a result of privatisation and deregulation, the vast majority of TSSA members now work for the same multinational companies as transport workers within Unite.
“In addition, the negotiating hand of our travel trade members will be greatly strengthened by being part of a union that organises the airline industry.
“Teaming up with Unite will deliver a stronger campaigning union – a force to be reckoned with!”
Subject to the successful conclusion of talks and the approval required by both union’s constitutional structures and by relevant legislation, it is hoped to secure the transfer of TSSA’s engagements into Unite in early 2014.
Of Unite’s 1.5 million members, around 250,000 are in the various transport sectors. TSSA’s membership is mainly in the rail industry, with some employed in the travel trade and across other forms of transport.