Members of ISTC - The Community Union and the Knitwear, Footwear and Apparel Trades Union (KFAT) have voted overwhelmingly in favour of a merger between the two unions it was announced today. 83% (5 out of 6) of ISTC members who voted were in favour of merging with KFAT. 92% (9 out of 10) KFAT members who voted were also in favour of merging with the ISTC.
Commenting on the ballot result, Michael Leahy, ISTC General Secretary, said:
“I am delighted that ISTC members have voted in such overwhelming numbers to create a new union for the 21st Century. This mandate for change shows that members recognised that by joining forces with KFAT –with whom we share a philosophy of delivering the benefits of trade union membership to all sections of our communities – we would be stronger together.
“Now we shall concentrate on bringing the two organisations together so that we are able to better serve our existing members and to provide a platform for continued recruitment for those in our community who need the support and strength that only membership of a good trade union can bring.”
Paul Gates, KFAT General Secretary, said:
“I am very proud that 92% of KFAT members have voted in favour of merging with the ISTC. The new union that will be created by this merger will enable existing members of both unions to benefit from more effective support in the workplace and in the community. In addition it will enable the new union to focus on recruitment to provide the benefits of trade union membership to those people in our communities who desperately need it.
“We have a goal of a modern, effective and committed trade union which helps its member cope with the challenges that they face in and out of the workplace and which plays a key role in regenerating Britain’s industrial communities. Our message to members and potential members alike is that we are stronger together.”
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