Blair asks unions to forget `them and us'

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The Independent Online
THE PRIME Minister will today make a rare visit to a trade union conference to call for an end to the "them and us" divide in British industry.

Mr Blair will address an audience of union officials and business leaders along with Adair Turner, the director-general of the CBI, who willstress the importance of partnership. The TUC hopes that the session will signal an end to both militant trade unionism and macho management.

The Government has urged companies where there is a strong union presence to come to terms with them sooner rather than later. The recognition laws are due to come into force next year.

The Manufacturing Science Finance union believes that calls for "partnership" in industry have fallen on deaf ears. Roger Lyons, the union's general secretary, said: "Other than the few genuine examples of mutually agreed partnership, most employers still take an adversarial approach."