General Secretary Election - McCluskey Panics

McCluskey - £133,916 a year at risk
There is last minute panic in the bureaucracy of Unite.

General Secretary McCluskey called the election three years early, surely for no believable reason except his own benefit. His bloated bureaucracy ran the nomination process over the new year when many branches are inactive, hoping no other candidate would get enough nominations to stand.

What happened though is that none of the right wing or other self-servers did put up, leaving only the Grass Roots candidate Jerry Hicks, the man who came second in the last two multiple candidate elections.

So now it is a clear choice between the highly paid bureaucracy, wanting to minimise union democracy and maximise their pay, and the candidate who wants election of officials from the bottom up, not appointment from the top down and will only take the average member's salary.

Hicks could win
The panic is evident in McCluskey's published election address - an off the shelf piece of red baiting claiming Hicks "is a political opportunist relying on the support of the discredited Socialist Workers Party."

To be clear Hicks is not a member of the SWP but they have decided to support him. Meanwhile McCluskey is supported by the truly loony left 'AWL' - Alliance for Workers Liberty; combining Trotskyism with Zionism is about as loony as you could ever get. AWL is a dominant force in the 'United Left' which runs the McCluskey election machine.

This unwanted and uncalled for election is probably your final chance to reclaim the union for the members and restore branch democracy and member control.  If McCluskey wins it will be more of the same, closed branches, top down appointments and decision making and blind support for New Labour policies.  The one way communication between the bureaucracy and the members we have seen for the last ten years will continue.

Election addresses are available here.

Jerry Hick's site is

Ballot papers must be returned by Friday 12 April 2013.  If you have not received or have lost your ballot paper contact the union's ballot enquiry service on 0800 783 3856 (0818 333 155 from the Irish Republic). All you need to do is tick a box and post it, no stamp required.

Members of Unite unite 
You have nothing to lose but your overpaid General Secretary 
(last recorded total salary and benefits £133,916 in 2011 (see page 12))


  1. Is it just me? 5 emailings from the union in the last few days since ballot papers went out saying what great work they are doing. Normally I only get 2 such spams in a month. Looks like last minute panic to me.

  2. Its not the cost to the union of cluckys £134K a year that matters its how does anyone on that sort of income stay in touch with average members anymore? ideology is shaped by material conditions

  3. You keep banging on about salary I've never heard a member raise it as an issue. Never supported Len last time but I see the excellent work Unite is doing under his leadership each and every day. Since our members elected him he has risen to the challenge of uniting our union and leading the movement. Your deluded if you think he's a Simpson or Jackson he is not. And as for elected officers do me a favour mate its a job of work we have to do not elect people every couple of years, now get back on your coach and enjoy your 15 minutes in the spotlight

  4. I have just read the 3 comments above but only one contains personal insults directed at the other two.
    Now then, McClusky has taken credit for much but done little. He would have you believe he won the BA and the BESNA disputes. He did not.
    He spoke to the SWP and if they had supported him as he asked I suppose we would not be hearing all this rubbish about them.
    The latest disgusting development is the Tweeting and Re-Tweeting of discraceful libelous lies by a lay rep and Len McCluskey's Campaign head.
    Members are seeing through the lies and they know that McClusky has calles Election expecting a coronation and to free Unite up to campaign for Labour in 2015.
    If McCluskey is elected this Union will fracture.

  5. election of officials is the only solution to the big problem of bureaucratisation of the union movement. Currently a GS gets elected, appoints all his mates to the senior jobs, bumps up all their salaries and his own, and starts selling life insurance and funeral plans to the members. Member and branch demoncracy is the only threat and its a nusiance to them so they start closing it down, and setting up 'community' and pensioners branches who have next to no say in the running of the union (neither can participate in Exec elections). Oh and when members head for the door, keep running by merging with other unions. we need a GS who is in touch with ordinary members and wants a member controlled union, bottom up not top down.

  6. unite needs to keep in touch with its members & clean house it cant always be about membership money! support your reps dnt leave them hanging so to speak especially when they lay there necks on the line to do GOOD and that includes all unions people are not stupid unions have to step upto the plate & fight fire with fire! otherwise unions will become weaker & weaker i like this forum here good idea transparency is key famous actor once said england is like a truth cup you have to keep it together or you will be exposed.