Unison refuses friends of Israel conference stall

By Robyn Rosen, June 3, 2010

The trade union Unison has refused the Trade Union Friends of Israel (TUFI) a stall at its annual conference next month, despite assurances last year's ban would be lifted.

TUFI, which aims to improve trade union relationships between Israel and Palestine, has run a stall at the conference previously but last year was refused due to a "security threat" following the Gaza conflict.

Stephen Scott, director of TUFI, said: "We are disappointed that we have not been allowed to exhibit for the second year running.

"We have always strived to put across a moderate case for Israeli unions and their willingness to work with the Palestinian trade unions. We are exhibiting at other unions this year and have had a good reception."

But a Unison spokeswoman said that there was only space for 20 out of its 80 affiliated organisations.

"We're not affiliated to TUFI nor are we doing any work with them, so priority goes to those we are currently working with," she said.

Last updated: 3:07pm, June 3 2010