Protest to resume in defiance of court injunction

Gordon McNeill successfully challenges injunction outside Transport House, Belfast

Gordon McNeill successfully challenges injunction outside Transport House, Belfast

Press Release 23 July 2008

 

Sacked Airport Shop Steward resumes Transport House protest in defiance of court injunction.

 

Gordon McNeill says “I am demanding that my union leadership restore my right to protest and my right to free speech”

 

Sacked airport shop steward, Gordon McNeill, who is awaiting surgery because of damage caused by his recent hunger and thirst strikes at Transport House, is resuming his protest campaign to demand justice from his union leadership.

 

Gordon will begin a protest at Transport House tomorrow lunchtime (24.07.08 at 12 noon) to defy the injunction served on him last month by Unite Irish Regional Secretary, Jimmy Kelly, barring him from such activity.

 

Gordon has refused to accept an offer from the Unite leadership of £40,000 in return for his complete silence on this dispute.

 

He has written an open letter to Unite General Secretary, Tony Woodley and Irish Regional Secretary, Jimmy Kelly setting out the terms on which his dispute with the union leadership could be settled. 

 

The proposed settlement terms are:

 

  1. Withdraw the injunction and restore my right to protest
  2. Remove the slanderous and inaccurate statements dealing with this dispute from the union website.
  3. Set up an independent and open inquiry into the union’s handling of our dispute from 2002 to the present in order to establish the full truth about what took place.
  4. Withdraw the confidentiality/gagging clause from the compensation offer.

 

Gordon today commented:

 

“Despite the health problems I have suffered which mean that I am now waiting for urgent surgery to fuse vertebrae in my neck, I have been left with no choice but to resume my campaign for justice from my union leadership.

 

“They have served me with an injunction removing my right to protest. The trade union movement was built by workers who defied and resisted such attacks on their democratic rights. I will follow in the footsteps of the true pioneers of this movement by defying this injunction.

 

“I have also been offered £40,000 to buy my silence on what happened during our dispute. This is an attempt to safeguard the reputations and careers of those union officials who mishandled the dispute. I will never accept a gagging order and am demanding that the compensation that the union accept I am entitled to be paid without confidentiality strings.

 

“I have made four modest and reasonable proposals to end this dispute and allow me to concentrate my energies on supporting fellow workers in struggle. There is no good reason why the Unite leaders will not grant these demands.”

 

For further information contact Gordon McNeill on 07934632366

 

Attached: Open letter to Tony Woodley and Jimmy Kelly

 

See also: http://www.belfastairportworkers.wordpress.com

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