Saturday, 22 April 2017

What do these workers think about Theresa May's speech?

Just look at their faces. Do these GSK workers in Maidenhead look like people who are there willingly? Do they look like people who are enthused by what they're hearing?

Of course they don't. They look like people who have been compelled by their employer into listening to Theresa May speak under threat of repercussions if they dare cause any trouble.

They look like that because that's exactly what they are: Unwilling participants in a stitch up between the Tory party and their employer to make it look like Theresa May actually has an audience beyond hand-picked stage managed crowds of Tory party loyalists bussed in from miles away, which was provably the case at her election launch event at the golf club in Bolton.

Not only were these poor workers compelled by their employer to act as photo fodder for Theresa May's propaganda team, they were also apparently barred from talking to reporters after the event too.

If GSK and the Tory propaganda team cobbled together a deal to bar the workers from speaking to the press after the event, what does this say about the company? And what does it say about the Tory party's attitude to workers?

The GSK company guidelines say "be clear, be honest, be open ... even when it's difficult", so if they barred their workers from speaking frankly to the press about their personal views on Theresa May's speech, haven't the company forced their workers to breech their own company guidelines?

As for the Tory party, what does it say about them that they think they've got the right to compel workers to listen to their tedious speeches and then ban them from speaking to the press about it? Having their corporate mates gag their workers from expressing their personal opinions, presumably under threat of disciplinary action, is pretty extreme stuff for a party that pretends to be on the side of working people isn't it?

The Tory government has already overseen the longest sustained decline in wages since records began (meaning average wages are 10% below the 2008 level), and stripped away workers' rights, like the right to seek unfair dismissal compensation without paying massive fees in order to access the "justice" system.

The idea of gagging workers from expressing their personal opinions is just another demonstration of elitist Tory control-freakery.

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