How on earth are New Labour going to win the unions round to their way of thinking?
The old 'frighten them with the Tories in power' trick doesnt seem to work anymore. Its been eleven years and the Labour government are doing things even Thatcher and Major wouldnt have dared doing. Ok, we have had some benefits like the minimum wage, but a lot of what Labour has brought to this country in the last eleven years hasnt really scratched the surface to repair the damage that the Tories inflicted.
Core voters not middle England in marginal seats are what is important and while there is a debate around the Trade Union Freedom Bill (which I wholeheartedly support)there are key clear issues that complement that that could easily be fitted into the manifesto. As the FT article explains
'Union demands include simplifying strike ballots, allowing members to vote by e-mail, extending apprenticeships and raising the minimum wage for younger workers, as well as policies to allow staff to take time off with sick children, extending the rights of low-paid workers to sick pay and setting a maximum legal workplace temperature.'
I would add the strengthening of laws against workplace bullying, increasing and then linking pensions to annual cost of living rises and to improve the working time regulations to at the very least euro standards.