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APK 9th congress: The work of the party in the working class, in workplaces and Trade Unions

The Workers Communist Party, APK, Denmark

This political platform “The work of the party within the working class, in workplaces and in Trade Unions”. was adopted at 9th Congress of our Party, APK in September 2021, after a process of discussions within and around the party in preparation for the Congress.

The Congress made it clear, that we are living in a time of upheaval at a rapid pace. Where crises, wars, pandemics, climate destruction replace each other. Where class struggle in the capitalist class societies is increasing in scope and strength. At a time of new opportunities to work and fight for a completely different future and development than the one the employers, warlords and exploiters have laid out for us. The Congress passed a series of resolutions to strengthen the party in its efforts for a revolutionary path in the working-class struggle for a socialist Denmark.

For several months, a large movement among public employed to ensure a public health and welfare sector, for equal pay and better working conditions in these sectors has been growing. Public employed nurses have been on strike and taken action for more than four months and health workers have been protesting. The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed how disastrously the public health and education sectors have in fact been eroded. In the face of this, the employers, the top leaders of the trade unions and the Social democratic Government are reinforcing their policy of austerity and attacks on the working class and social rights and conditions.

To strengthening the party’s roots and influence in the working class, the 9th Congress adopted this platform.

 

The work of the party in the working class, in workplaces and Trade Unions

  1. The class struggle will intensify throughout society these years. Not least in the workplaces, in the social areas and in the so-called welfare areas of the public sector. There are protests against the intervention of the government in the collective agreements and agreed script books for sham negotiations, against the consequences of the attacks by reforms and against the anti-worker crisis- and austerity policy. Workers and public servants must prepare and organise themselves for the struggles that are coming- as attacks on workers and living conditions increase.
  2. Crises and pandemics are being used as an excuse for new attacks on won professional and social rights. The bosses, the capital and its state are driving wages, working conditions, and living conditions into a downward spiral. While employers and big business have received large billions of dollars in capital, their party on exploitation and stocks and shares have reached new highs. – They won’t stop until they face resistance from the other side of the class struggle – from the working class and the people. They know only oneway out of their constant crises and competitions for markets: to make the working class and broad sections of the population pay through increased exploitation and exploitation of our labour, as cheaply and efficiently as possible, regardless of the consequences. Labour is used, thrown away, and new is brought in.
  3. The demands for jobs, higher wages and equal pay, education, social rights, and housing for all are central demands put forward together with the rejection of the boss’s policy of successive governments. If we accept the financial negotiating frameworks of what can be achieved and agree to distribute deterioration among ourselves, it calls for defeat for the majority and bonuses for the few. Employers have long since blown the framework for how far they want to go in the so-called” new normal” labor market. Already, large groups are grossly underpaid, working hours have been made fluid and work pressures increased. With a rapidly changing labour market, it is essential to blow up the economic framework and make profits pay.
  1. As at the beginning of the labor movement, it has once again become necessary to raise a struggle for elementary rights such as the right to organize, the right to collective agreements in both private and public spheres. Not the least among the growing large groups of “modern one day worker” who work without rights without fixed pay, without fixed working hours, in so-called SMS (text messages) jobs. And among the imported migrant workers and their living and working under slave-like conditions who have bourgeois class courts word for this being perfectly legal in the EU’s “free” labor market.
  1. The State does not play a neutral role, either as a public employer or as a so-called third party between employers and workers and employees. This has been evident not least in the negotiations of collective agreements in the public sector, where professional groups that have followed all the rules of state and the Labor markets legal rules to put forward their demands, they have been thrown from a no of the Trade Union top leaders to a no from the government and politicians as they went down that path. For so subsequently- if they say no to a rotten offer and take action themselves- it is ruled illegal.
  1. This development and the last several collective agreements and conflicts show that class struggle cannot be waged under the conditions of the bourgeois state, employers, or capital power. The “Danish model” is a model of class cooperation to the advantage of employers and their state, and it has failed in achieving results. The same goes for “the tripart agreements” between employer, state, and the top of the Trade Union Movement.
  1. The Main Agreement on the labor market and the professional law system in the labor market, rules linking votes on collective agreements into one pile for all and gags on elected representatives are tools for the protection of employers. And is made to twist the arms of workers and employees around, who want change and fight for their demands. It must be discussed in working place clubs and trade unions how the work struggles can get though these class rules. There is a growing political line based on class struggle developing, despite and across the political bankruptcy of class cooperation and the constricting legal and contract class system.
  1. The capitalist state is a class state that is designed and acts as the prolonging arm of the capital. This also applies to its violent part, where police are deployed against blockades and picket lines while protecting picket breakers. As numerous labor struggles have shown this.
  1. Capitalism as a social system has shown time and time again that it is neither able to solve its recurring crises nor ensure a safe and stable everyday life and future for the working class.

 

The role of the working class and the party of the working class

  1. The working class is the fundamental force of the revolution. It is the leading and fundamental force in the fight against capitalism and the dominance of capital. It is the unskilled, the low paid, the bottom sections working class and the most pressured strata of the workers and employees in the public sector, who are the most combative strata- as well as workers in sectors such as transport and construction. –  The communist party’s most important effort is its work within the working class: to strengthen the ideological, political, and organizational relations. And to develop the working class into the leading political force in society and into the political reference for the other classes and strata of working people and oppressed groups.
  1. The strategic task of the communist party is to organize the revolution. Which is crucial to build a socialist Denmark where it is the working class who have taken power. It is with this in mind that the Labor Party communists, APK, participate in the daily class struggle in workplaces, in trade unions and among the working-class groups who are excluded from the traditional labor market and organization. – The professional struggle and social struggle of the working class cannot be narrowed down to a battle for dollars and pennies. We are seeing how quickly achievements can be rolled back if the day-to-day struggle is not associated with the fight for the long-term interests of the working class for a different future, with the strengthening of unity on the political line of class struggle and the development of the political revolutionary consciousness of the working class.

 

The Trade Union movement today and the labor aristocracy

12)  For the working class, it is essential to fight for the right to organize and form Trade Unions. Today, this right is under severe pressure and liquidation from the anti-labor policies of the European Union, EU, and Danish politicians. The trade union movement has evolved far away from its original roots as a safeguard against capitalist employers and for the interests of the working class. A development which has led to the service and insurance enterprise groups with large billion funds and financial groups we see today.

13)  The myth of the Danish one-stringed Trade Union movement is only a shell too hold up the “Danish model” and triparty negotiations between employers, the state, and the top of the Trade Unions leaders. Politically, there is a very long way from the members’ demands and wishes for the actions to the actions from the top leadership of the Trade Unions m. From the beginning there has existed two political lines in the labor and Trade Union movement: between class struggle and class cooperation, between a reformist and a revolutionary policy. –  Organizationally, too, the myth does not hold water- with the declining degree of organization in Trade Unions (in Denmark it has declining from 80-90% in many sectors down to around 50% in the last decades and the emergence of “yellow” (bosses and workers in the union) and Christian so-called Trade Unions. As well as the fact that the traditional Trade Union movement has excluded large groups of the working class from the large growing unofficial labor marked from being members.  –  At the same time, the top of the Trade Union movement has closed its eyes to the social rights and conditions of the workers and the whole race on anti-workers and anti-social reforms from unemployment benefits, sickness benefits, social benefits to rising retirement age. The governments of the employers are cutting social benefits ever further down, so that the minimum wage can be squeezed and turned down.

14)  It’s not without reason – that many workers and public servants find that national federal Trade Union, FH sells out their demands, slows down protests and activity and ends up on the employers’ side. The Trade Union top and its employed staff form a special layer – also called the worker aristocracy. They are able to live a very different life with lucrative salaries, pensions and jobs that are in deep contrast to the conditions of the Union members. Because of the special economic position of the workers’ aristocracy and their social position and influence, the class interests of this layer are linked to the interests of employers and to the preservation of capitalist society.

15)  That is why it is not possible to change the policies and actions of the workers’ aristocracy through dialogue. Illusions about this layer as an ally or actually as leadership in class struggle are a recipe for defeat. Many combative workers have run head-on against this wall, both in the central collective agreements struggles, local conflicts and interdisciplinary battles such as the equal pay for the working-class women.

16 )  It is not possible to change the Trade Union system in its present form to organizations of class struggle. The systems of the Trade Union movement today are tied with a thousand threads to the bourgeois capitalistic state. A fighting Trade Union movement on the grounds of class struggle can be created when all these ties have been severed.
It is necessary for the fighting working class and public servants to come together, organize and build a strong unity and solidarity on this ground. To utilize the space for action that basic Trade Union organization across professions can provide, to develop class solidarity and combat will, and to challenge the many limitations that professional law and the agreement system place on the forms of struggle. An opposition within the Trade Unions must be built at the basic level on a class struggle line.

17)  Part of the reformist Trade Union movement’s policy has always been that the professional struggle is apolitical and must be kept in this closed box. Even though we live in a capitalist class society that waged political, ideological, and economically class struggle every single day against the working class. Industrial action and professional struggle are also political struggle. But not on the line as to divide the workers on a party level, or not to be abused or misled into thinking that a solution is to vote for “the right party” at the next election. When assessing the impact of the policies of successive governments, it is more than difficult to tell the difference between the couleurs of these government. The Social Democrats too have been at the forefront of tough antisocial reforms, austerity crisis policy, and government interventions in collective bargaining when in power.

 

The Working-class unity

18) The basis for the development of each struggle, for a situation in which a broad revolutionary movement rises, is the political and ideological unity of the working class. The unity must be forged in the concrete class struggle, in the discussion on current requirements and forms of action and on the strategic platform of the working class. It must build from below in workplaces, in Trade Unions clubs, in local communities. It must involve the unity between private and public workers and employees, the ones in jobs, the unemployed and the ones working forced to work on social benefits, the migrant workers, across professional groups, ethnically and genders. Problems such as working time, unequal pay, wage dumping, and social and professional rights must be solved jointly.

19)  The solidarity of the working class must always be specifically involved, developed, and strengthened to use the common strength of the class. By extending the economic struggle to a political struggle with common demands put to those responsible, unity and solidarity can be built and unfolded. Local and individual negotiations and “free-choice” arrangements are designed to make each one feel alone and isolated, while the collective strength of the working class and public servants is the way forward. In the event of conflicts and strikes, support committees must be set up again locally and at workplaces to help spread solidarity and provide financial assistance if strike funds of the Trade Union are shut and professional court law imposes fines.

20)  The Labor Movement must work for and organise the unity of all the forces and social sectors interested in fighting for their material and political demands and in combating the bourgeois exploitation and the dominance of imperialism.

21)  The international solidarity of the working class will always be at the heart of the work of the working class and its Communist Party. Specifically, among the growing number of employees distributed in many countries working in the same multinational groups. And as concrete and active solidarity with the many struggles that workers all over the world are facing against the consequences of neoliberal reforms, against capitalist and imperialist exploitation and oppression, wars and destruction of resources and survival opportunities, and for a socialist future.

 

 

 

Workers Communists party, APK. 9th Congress,
September 2021
 

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