Scottish trade union federation backs BDS
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Scottish trade union federation backs BDS

The Scottish Trade Union Congress (STUC) voted to take up the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign, joining South Africa and Ireland as the third national trade union federation to become part of the global movement. The decision to support BDS happened in a large part due to a report given by a STUC Delegation that recently visited Palestine as well as in response to the Gaza massacres.

The STUC, which represents every trade union in Scotland and includes 640,000 trade unionists comprising 37 affiliated trade unions and 22 Trades Union Councils, voted overwhelming to support BDS despite aggressive lobbying by Zionist groups.

The move is largely due to the delegation that witnessed and reported on the worsening conditions for Palestinians in its March visit as well as the shocking slaughter that took place during the offensive in Gaza. Speaker after speaker expressed intense anger at the recent massacres while pointing out that the Israeli state is built on history of ethnic cleansing.

The STUC’s new position is a dramatic breakthrough which has the potential to greatly accelerate the boycott campaign already underway in Scotland against, for example, Israeli companies and sporting or cultural visits. The Scottish Government earlier in the year yielded to public concerns and cancelled a trade delegation to Israel.

It will also make easier the task of building a mass boycott campaign across Scotland, in every town and small community, in every supermarket and every sporting and cultural event.

This is the third example of a national trade union federation committing to BDS and is a clear indication that, while the whole-scale killing of Palestinians is still acceptable to many political elites, the battle for world public opinion has shifted in favor of the Palestinian people and their struggle.