Jan Willem Goudriaan, EPSU General Secretary, speaking at UNISON conference on 20 June 2016, Brighton
(21 June 2016) “The vision of Euro-skeptics and conservatives for England, the UK and Europe is divisive. It is about US versus Them. It is not about working together to change the UK and Europe for the better. They are not telling us how they will improve workers’ rights. The alternative we have is of a Social Europe. Of working to achieve this. And yes many things are wrong in the EU but Brexit will not cure these. “ The EPSU General Secretary addressed hundreds of Unison shopstewards. He was highlighting priorities in the work of EPSU. Fighting austerity policies and addressing tax justice, standing up for trade union rights in the UK and elsewhere and defeating the new generation trade agreement with Canada (CETA) were amongst those.
The EPSU General Secretary was speaking at the annual delegates conference of Local government as well as the international rally of Unison, 20 June 2016, Brighton. The Internationally rally was opened by PSI President and acting EPSU President Dave Prentis (GS of Unison). He underlined the shameful policies of European governments to block refugees. The agreement between Turkey and the European Union needs to be refused. Dave also referred to the convoy of aid for refugees in Calais. It was blocked by French border guards. The EPSU General Secretary underlined how that deal made European governments close their eyes for trade union and other human rights violations in Turkey. We have to uphold our European values and show solidarity with those feeling war and destruction.