Given the recession has financially crippled thousands of small businesses and seen pay freezes and cuts across the public sector, two people didn’t do too badly during the crisis. The outgoing Unite co-General Secretaries Tony Woodley and Derek Simpson will leave their jobs in charge of the super-union very rich men. Derek Simpson was on £196,497 if you add up car, salary, and perks etc. Poor Tony Woodley only managed to squeeze £135,330 a year out of the worker’s membership subs. Since 2007 they have seen a eye-watering 56% and 62% pay-rises respectfully, unheard of in the real world. Given that the average salary in the UK is somewhere around £25,000, the union-fat cat copy writes itself.
The newly elected Len “there is no such thing as an irresponsible strike” McCluskey is a Che loving militant-hardliner, who wears his man of the people credentials on his sleeve. If Ed Miliband wants to distance himself from the union that gave him his job he might have a bit of a challenge with this one, McCluskey was a big player in the BA strikes.
The real question though is will “Red Len” take a massive pay-cut before he mans the barricades and leads the charge?