The EU`s chief negotiator, Michel Barnier, said earlier this week that he was “concerned and disappointed” by a lack of concessions and said there would be no deal if the UK did not give in on fisheries. The important principle is that individual membership should not be used to destabilize the activities or organization of other trade unions; But while principle five of the Bridlington Agreement has been strictly adhered to in the past, where unions would not enter a single member in a company where another union had an essential affiliation, this idealized situation no longer corresponds to the reality of modern trade unionism, except in a minority of special cases. For example, when a GMB member obtains a new job with Honda at a plant with an essential affiliation, they may not recognize that the most appropriate measure is to join UNITE and should not inform anyone of their job change; If, two years later, it applied to GMB and asked to be represented in a complaint, GMB would be morally and contractually obliged to use it, regardless of UNITE`s recognition agreement with Honda. This is not a violation of the spirit of the fifth principle of the Bridlington Agreement. The Bridlington Agreement of 1939 established the principles that TUC unions should not attempt to actively recruit, either by “debauching” members of other unions (principle 2) or by intervening in a company where another union had already organized a majority of employees (principle 5). This is the principle that the EETPU was excluded from the TUC in 1987, after signing individual trade union agreements with a number of employers of which it had few members, thus forcing the exclusion of other trade unions; in some cases where a substantial organization already existed. The exclusion followed a decision by the TUC Disputes Committee to withdraw the EETPU from the agreements reached in Yuasa, Thorn-EMI and Orion, which it refused. Although the main objective of the agreement is to prevent members from escaping financial obligations, their main objective is to avoid disputes that could result from the recruitment of members between unions.
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