You can read the full text of the emergency motion, which was unanimously carried, below.
Oppose the Arms Fair in Liverpool in October 2021
This meeting of UNISON North West Regional Council notes that on 11 September 2021, thousands of people, including many UNISON members and branches, protested against the Electronic Arms Fair due to be held at the Liverpool ACC Arena in October 2021.
The Arms Fair is expected to promote components for warplanes, missile systems, drones and other military hardware. Major exhibitors will include arms manufacturers with a record of selling weapons to some of the most oppressive regimes.
Representatives of governments from many countries, including some highly undemocratic and repressive regimes, plus their top military brass, will rub shoulders with the merchants of death determined to make massive profits out of military conflict and human suffering.
The ACC Arena is Council owned, run by the arms length company ACC. We do not accept the Council are powerless to prevent the Arms Fair going ahead. Several events at the Arena have been cancelled in the past, including one by the evangelist Franklin Graham due to his extreme homophobic views; previous Arms Fairs have been cancelled too.
This meeting notes the significant local opposition to the Arms Fair and applauds Massive Attack for cancelling their gig in protest at the event.
This meeting also notes that Trade Unions nationally, notably the NEU, have written to the ACC Arena and to Liverpool Council stating their intention to review their use of the ACC Arena for future conferences if the Arms Fair event goes ahead.
This meeting believes that UNISON should give serious consideration to the appropriateness of holding any future conferences or events at the Liverpool ACC Arena if the Arms Fair goes ahead and therefore proposes that the relevant officers and/or structures of UNISON:
- Urgently review the future use of Liverpool ACC Arena for any events if the Arms Fair goes ahead;
- Write to the COO of the ACC Arena and the CEO of Liverpool Council urging the cancellation of the Arms Fair and of UNISON’s intention to review its future use of the ACC Arena otherwise.
Submitted by Liverpool City branch