Demise of BNP’s Nick Griffin ‘celebrated’ by Halton workers’ rights group
Unison turns attention to Ukip after demise of BNP leader in Europe
A HALTON union has welcomed the defeat of the British National Party’s (BNP) Nick Griffin in the European elections.
Paula Barker, Unison’s branch secretary in the borough, said work to oust the BNP MEP began a year ago, when the union and other ‘anti-fascism’ groups launched their ‘Get Griffin Out’ campaign.
Activism included canvassing in neighbourhoods targeted by the BNP.
In the 2009 European Elections, th BNP polled nearly 10% of the vote in Halton, helping them to secure them an MEP seat for Mr Griffin.
But the party’s support in Halton has now collapsed to 2%.
Unison has also been working to scupper Ukip’s attempt to build a following in Halton.
Speaking after Sunday’s European election count, Mrs Barker said: “The people of Halton and the North West sent a clear message to Nick Griffin and the BNP at Thursday’s election and rejected their vile message of hate.
“For the last 12 months our branch has been campaigning as part of a wider movement to expose the BNP.
“Unison found it abhorrent that Nick Griffin represented our communities in Europe.
“I would also like to take the opportunity to congratulate Teresa Griffin, and her fellow Labour MEPs on their positive campaign, helping them secure three North West MEP seats.”
She added: “When Unison became aware that Ukip were fielding candidates in the local elections, we targeted wards where they were standing.
“We wanted to get our message out on the doorstep that Ukip does not have the answers to the challenges facing the residents of Runcorn and Widnes brought on by the ConDem coalition cuts.
“As a former investment banker, Nigel Farage believes in a flat rate of income tax, meaning families from Halton would pay the same rate of tax as one of Farage’s millionaire friends in the city.
“Additionally Ukip is keen to erode employment rights such as maternity pay, the right to redundancy pay and attacks on annual leave.
“This is a particular worry to us as a trade union who spend every day protecting the very rights that Ukip wish to take away from our members.”