Unite offers 'community membership'


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The Independent Online

A leading trade union is offering "community membership" to people including students and the unemployed, giving them access to financial, legal and other advice for 50p a week.

Unite, which took part in last week's massive pensions strike, said the aim was to make sure those pushed to the "margins" of society can benefit from collective power.

Unite's general secretary, Len McCluskey, said: "This scheme could transform trade unionism in the UK. It comes at a time when horrific cuts and ideological social changes are pushing more and more people to the margins.

"Last week we had the mass action by public servants fighting for pensions justice. Only 24 hours before that, the Chancellor told the country that, under his Government, the attacks on the incomes and services of the ordinary people of this country will continue until 2017. This is a Government of the few.

"It is time now for those on the margins to organise, to come together to challenge the decisions made by the elite in the interests of the few. This is the real Big Society - ordinary people organising for themselves - in action."