Described as 'ordinary men and women, who have become extraordinary', the dockers and the Women on the Waterfront (WOW), have conducted one of the most imaginative and creative responses to global casualisation in trade union history. Like this...
* mobilising massive international support and action
* joining Reclaim The Streets in a historic anniversary action which later led to a 20,000 strong party in Trafalgar Square
* recording a single called "***K The Millenium" with the KLF
* taking the term 'flying picket' literally by sending dockers out to the world's ports
* getting everyone from Robbie Fowler, Jo Brand & Chumbawumba to shout the score
* and telling their former bosses to stuff their £30,000 bribes.
In short, the Liverpool dockworkers have been a beacon of resistance and hope...
Not only have they buried the myth that the worker's movement is an outmoded irrelevancy, but they have shown the way. By breaking down the barriers between not only countries and 'North and South', but also between the unions, environmentalists and refugees in the fight for a better world. The direct action movement has begun to realise that workplace struggles are just important as roadside struggles - and that the greater our alliances the more chance we have of creating a better world. We've said it before - this isn't about single issues, this is about fighting for a planet where, to put it simply, people are more important than profit.
"Our stand is simple and straightforward. We sell our labour power and we uphold our right to withdraw our labour power, otherwise we're slaves." - Mersey Docks Shop Stewards Committee: more