The TUC Congress voted overwhelmingly today to reaffirm their opposition to Britain’s Trident nuclear weapons system. Trident was debated at the annual Congress for the first time since 2006.
This year, scrapping the replacement of Trident was included in Composite resolution 2, Economic Policy, moved by Billy Hayes, General Secretary of the Communication Workers Union. The motion insisted:
‘Public finances can also be improved by addressing tax avoidance and scrapping the replacement of Trident. Money saved by ending our nuclear weapons system could be used to sustain the process of defence diversification, vital to our manufacturing future.’
The motion also met the concerns of those unions with members in the nuclear weapons sector by stressing:
‘Such a policy would need to ensure that the jobs and skills of tens of thousands of workers in the sector were preserved.’
Billy Hayes said: “There is one cut that could be usefully made – that of military spending…by scrapping Trident we would save £100 billion over the course of its lifetime.”
Kate Hudson, General Secretary of CND, said: “We welcome the support of the trade union movement for the scrapping of Trident replacement. Today’s vote reinforces the shared values of the TUC and CND – public spending to meet people’s needs, not to build weapons of mass destruction. We urge this government and its successor to put plans in place for defence diversification so that our skilled workforce can manufacture for peace not war.”