Wanja Lundby Wedin

LO Keeps its Head Despite Turbulent Times

As Radio Sweden reported on Monday night - it was decided after a meeting lasting nearly 8 hours, that Wanja Lundby Wedin would stay on as head of the Swedish Trade Union Confederation LO. Since then reactions in the media and by the members have been mixed.

Three unions came to the meeting with the request by their own members that Lundby Wedin should resign. Today, despite the result, most are satisfied with the decision made by the unanimous board last night.

Janne Rudén, head of the trade union SEKO, explained to Swedish Radio News why they had changed their mind with a simple ”you don’t always get what you want”

The economic spokesman of the opposition Social Democrats, Thomas Östros, previously critical to Lundby Wedin said to Swedish Radio News that despite all that has happened, it is now clear that Wanja Lundby Wedin has regained the trust of the unions in the confederation.

” Now it will take hard work to regain the trust and support of the general public,” Östros said to Swedish Radio News.

He is joined in this sentiment by a number of leading representatives of the Social Democratic paty, in the wake of the AMF scandal. Several spokesmen for the party voiced their worries to TT today regarding how tough it will be for the Social Democrats to regain voters’ trust before the election for the European parliament in June and the general election in 2010. They all mention that there is a growing dissatisfaction among the ordinary members - that the AMF scandal has overshadowed not only the employment and financial crises - but even the recession itself.

Wanja Lundby Wedin was forced to meet this seething anger  herself today, when she visited a local branch of builder’s union, Byggettan. She started the meeting by peronslly apologizing for the recent events, but according to TT this was no help - the criticism was harsh and tempers flared.

When the Swedish media later asked her how she would regain the trust of ordinary members, she simply answered:

”By meeting their criticism.” (rm)

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