Government reforms right to strike and restrictions on picketing – 1927

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Copyright TUC

As the Government today publishes its Trade Union Bill – to reform unions and the right to strike – we look back at a similar campaign in 1927.

The Trade Disputes and Trade Union Act 1927 banned civil service unions affiliating to the TUC, banned general strikes and sympathetic strike action, forced union members to contract-in to the political levy and placed restrictions on picketing.

The TUC and the Labour Party opposed the Act, producing leaflets and cartoons such as the one above. They also formed the National Trade Union Defence Committee to campaign against the passing of the legislation. The Committee produced a number of publications, such as the leaflet below, and organised a mass demonstration in Hyde Park on June 26th 1927. The Act was later repealed by the Attlee Government in 1946.

Copyright TUC/Labour Party

To find out more on the subject of unions and the right to strike, use the Timeline section on our history website.

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