Australian union secretary endorses #occupy movement for ‘real democracy’

Communications Workers Union Victoria secretary Len Cooper.

The secretary of the Communications Workers Union Victoria, Len Cooper, sent the letter below to the Occupy Melbourne community outreach working group on October 12.

* * *

Dear friends,

I am writing on behalf of my union to endorse your call for real democracy.

Today in the City of Boston, America, one of our sister unions, IBEW Local 2222, representing Boston telecom workers will read out a statement supporting the Wall
Street and Boston occupations.

All around the globe assemblies of the people are demanding that democracy truly become the will of the people, against greed, excess, militarism and socially induced environmental crisis, and for a future of appropriate scale, participatory democracy, which includes the economy and equality.

I also write to express the frustration that we feel, and that you speak to, at the lack of democracy for unions. In particular over the issue of the right to strike, because the strike is the sword of democracy, the means by which unions could defend each other, our communities and planet, but under the law are banned from doing so.

If they had the right to strike Australian unionists, organised in solidarity with each other and their communities, would never have allowed the mass privatisations, the introduction of casualisation and the off-shoring of our wealth-creating jobs to have occurred.

We would by now have insisted upon a renewables industry, insisted that our union superannuation be used for the common good, and that our country withdraw from wars of aggression overseas.

Some of our members and representatives will be participating across the actions you have organised for real democracy and communication. On behalf of my union I wish you every success in your endeavours, I encourage you in your courageous call for a real democracy, I assure you that your actions are appreciated by compassionate Australians from many walks of life, and I commend you for your concern for our collective future.

Len Cooper
Communication Workers Union

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