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‪Des syndicalistes britanniques toujours blacklistés !‪. L’anti-syndicalisme patronal au Royaume-Uni

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  • Steve Jefferys

Abstract

‪Trade union discrimination in the UK takes both direct and indirect forms. British employers, especially family-owned firms, have always preferred trade union-free workplaces. When they had the opportunity they would deny trade unionists jobs, or dismiss them if ‪ ‪“‪ ‪their‪ ‪”‪ ‪ employees joined a union and actively promoted collective worker opposition. Often they maintained blacklists of militants whom they advised other local employers not to recruit. Victimised activists were often forced to change town or occupation to get work. But for over a hundred years, from the 1860s to the 1970s, trade union discrimination was not the dominant employer strategy. Many medium and large-sized British-owned firms tolerated and cooperated with trade unionists. They did so to secure industrial peace, and because they wanted the unions to discipline incoming competitors to their industries. Since the economic slowdown from the 1970s and the hegemony of economic neo-liberalism in a context of higher intensity global competition, trade union discrimination has become more systematic. It includes the direct forms of avoidance and victimisation, but is particularly significant in its indirect forms of marginalisation and legal restraint. Organised ideological anti-unionism was once the preserve of the ideological Economic League and its construction industry blacklisting progeny, The Consulting Association. In 21‪ ‪st‪ ‪ century UK anti-unionism now become a staple part of more sophisticated pragmatic human resource management within an industrial relations legal framework that discriminates strongly against trade union representation and action.‪

Suggested Citation

  • Steve Jefferys, 2016. "‪Des syndicalistes britanniques toujours blacklistés !‪. L’anti-syndicalisme patronal au Royaume-Uni," Revue Tiers-Monde, Armand Colin, vol. 0(2), pages 17-49.
  • Handle: RePEc:cai:rtmarc:te_146_0017
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