In the struggle between the Labour government and the conspiracy theorists and right wing anti-vaxxers, the Left are sitting on the sidelines as onlookers.
An injury to one is an injury to all
If Wellington Mayor Andrew Foster truly can not find any tow truck drivers in the Wellington region not scared to tow these protesters cars, (Which I find hard to believe), then Auckland’s Mayor Goff in an act of solidarity with the Wellington City should have sent tow truck drivers from Auckland to Wellington in a ‘Save Democracy Convoy’.
It could have been the last shining act of his Mayoralty.
So where else can we look to for support for the government from the Left?
There is power in the union
The anti-vaccination, anti-mandate protesters are scabbing on this country’s collective covid response. These scabs are threatening to undo all our collective hard work and sacrifice..
Simpley put, Trade Unions are Left organisations which believe in collective action and hate scabs.
The Maritime Union of New Zealand Munz, represents the Ports Of Wellington workers. The wharfies have a proud history of standing up to bullies and scabs, and are not easily intimidated.
The wharfies and other unionists have a culture that values collective action, that individual owner operators like tow truck drivers and the right wing antivaxxers don’t.
If the Wellington Council towing contractors won’t tow the protesters cars, the Ports of Wellington should. The ports of Wellington workforce load and unload cars all the time at the port. They have the machinery and the expertise. Working with the Mayor’s office MUNZ members can remove all the cars to the wharf or other nearby secure facility until the protesters pay their parking fines and agree to disperse.
MUNZ Maritime Union of New Zealand National Secretary Craig Harrison is the union leader in a position to offer the union’s support to the Wellington City Council to remove these vehicles.
Give us the tools and we will do the job.
Wellington City Council Chief Executive Barbara McKerrow is the Council executive with the power in a position to sign off on an operation to release the low loaders and industrial sized Fork Lifts at the Port for a joint operation with the MUNZ members. With a police escort MUNZ members have the expertise and the ability and if given the tools can safely and swiftly remove all the protesters illegally parked vehicles and take them to the port or other nearby secure area, and keep them there until the protesters pay their parking fines and agree to disperse.
Wellington Mayor Mayor Andy Foster needs to reach out to the trade union movement and Munz for their support.
The Left need to stop being sideline spectators.
That’s not us.
Pat O’Dea is a unionist and human rights activist.