Unison refuses TUFI a stall at its annual conference

See TULIP (Trade Unions Linking Israel and Palestine).

“Trade Union Friends of Israel (TUFI), which aims to “promote Israeli-Palestinian trade union co-operation and strengthen the links between the Israeli, Palestinian and British trade union movements”, has been banned from attending the upcoming annual conference of UNISON, the giant public sector union.

For three years running TUFI, like many similar groups, had a stall at each year’s UNISON conference, as well as at the conferences of other major trade unions. (This year two major British unions — the GMB and CWU — have specifically invited TUFI to attend.)

But last year, UNISON told TUFI it was not welcome to have a stall at its conference. Initially, UNISON claimed that TUFI had requested the stall too late, but later changed the line to say that TUFI was not welcome because of the “security threat”. Apparently there were some concerns for the safety of Jewish members of the union following the Gaza conflict.

After the conference — at which TUFI held a very successful fringe meeting — UNISON promised that it was all a great misunderstanding and everything would be fine this year.”

Read the whole thing.

This month has seen Israel reacting to Egypt’s ongoing refusal of visas to Israeli academics, and Israeli officials refusing entry to Noam Chomsky and a clown.

It’s grim to see a British trade union allowing its pro-conflict faction to drag it into this. Make some noise.

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