Combating the Fascists

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2002 National Black Members' Conference
31 May 2002
Carried as Amended

This Conference condemns the British National Party (BNP), the National Front (NF) and all parties whose policies and members attack the human rights of black people through their intimidatory campaigning and their use of direct physical violence. This Conference also condemns the shameful election of three BNP councillors in Burnley, and the significant number of votes they attracted in other constituencies.

This Conference notes that the BNP in particular is led by criminals convicted of racist crimes. This Conference believes that they should be given no opportunity to secure publicity for their poisonous views and no opportunity to stand for election to public office.

This Conference believes that the trade union movement is also threatened by fascist activity, and that trade unions have a major role to play in combating the fascists. UNISON has a particularly important role to play because its members provide the public services that the fascists seek to control for racist purposes; its members are also users of public services, and it has the largest group of organised black workers of any organisation in the United Kingdom.

This Conference also believes that UNISON’s role in combating the fascists must lie in a combination of work at all levels of the Union, involving recruitment, organisation, education, and campaigning, and working with broadly-based anti-racist anti-fascist and anti-nazi organisations.

This Conference further believes there is still much work to be done throughout UNISON, but the key must be taking on the issue at branch level. This work must include ensuring members are aware of the threat that fascist political parties represent and the need to work with broad-based anti-racist and anti-nazi campaigns in local communities.

This Conference therefore calls on all branch black members’ groups to raise this issue in their branches and:

a)Work with branch officers on developing anti-racist education activities, seeking support from regional education resources as appropriate;

b)Ensure that this work is built into the Branch Development Plan and appropriate branch resources, including budget, allocated;

c)Submit a motion to their branch meetings calling for the branch to affiliate to the National Assembly Against Racism (NAAR) Anti Nazi League and other anti-racist and anti-fascist organisations, invite a NAAR, Anti Nazi League and other anti-racist and anti-fascist organisations speaker to address a future branch meeting, and examine ways in which the branch can work with NAAR to raise anti-racist issues in the local community;

d)Encourage their branches to actively support community initiatives which bring together different sections of the community;

e)Conference re-affirms its decision made at the Black Members’ Conference in 2000, at Southport, to support affiliation to the Anti Nazi League.