The Euro: Bad for Trade Unions

European Business Review

ISSN: 0955-534X

Article publication date: 1 April 2000




Nicholls, D. (2000), "The Euro: Bad for Trade Unions", European Business Review, Vol. 12 No. 2.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2000, MCB UP Limited

The Euro: Bad for Trade Unions


The Euro: Bad for Trade Unions

Keywords: Trade Unions, European Union

The Congress for Democracy is the most broad based umbrella group opposing entry into the single currency. It represents a unique unity of purpose crossing all shades of political opinion. The Congress asked me to write a short pamphlet on the trade union case against the Euro. I was pleased to do this as my own union, having debated the issue thoroughly, is opposed to the single currency and has mandated national officers to put our position in public debate. The union for which I work is not affiliated to any political party or organisation, so our views as a union seek to be very objective on such matters.

In discussing the issue with many trade unionists debate has always led to a consideration of factors relating to economic and political preparation for the single currency within the European Union (EU). Debate also comes to the point of asking what is the alternative to entering the single currency and what are we for? I have sought to sketch some points relating to these wider debates in the full recognition that these go beyond the scope of the Congress of Democracy itself and I am grateful for their recognition that these matters have to be tackled in trade union discussion.

I provide at the end a short reading list of the most accessible, accurate and concise works related to the Euro. I also indicate some of the regular publications providing real information about the EU plans for a single currency and its military aspirations and some of the publications of trade unionists in Europe who are opposed to the Euro. A key Website is also indicated that will lead readers on to the full range of informed opinion about the issues from all those within Europe opposing the single currency.

It has been surprising to me to note that the normally extensive internationalist work of the British trade unions has not in recent years reached out to those trade unionists in Europe fighting the job losses and public service cuts and manufacturing decline that have followed the Maastricht and Amsterdam Treaties. I write therefore in the hope that in tackling this question trade unions can restore their internationalist concerns.

The pamphlet is published by the Congress for Democracy, 58 Keswick Road, Great Bookham, Surrey, KT23 4BH, UK. 20 pages. UK £5.00.

If you would like to make any points about this pamphlet please do not hesitate to e-mail me at

Doug NichollsGeneral SecretaryThe Community and Youth Workers' Union

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