Wednesday, 16 September 2015

Trades Councils, Mental Health & Liberty: TUC Day 4

Well, it's almost over now!

We've heard the speeches of lots of other unions, and Surprise! ! Surprise!
We all suffer at the hands of Government and their policies, and we all support each other!  There is clearly an under - used resource locally- our Trades Councils

We have places on the Oxford Trades  Union Council, but need to engage with other local towns in Oxfordshire and theirTrades Union Councils/ groups.

We have listened to speeches on Mental Health issues for both children, and adult workers, and how poorly these groups have been served in schools, colleges and universities.

An emotional speech from a young, male  NUT teacher, about his attempted suicide, after the lack of support from his school, when he finally admitted his mental health problems! He is a survivor, and deservedly received a standing ovation!

Other areas covered have been  Child  Sexual Exploitation; shameful new Government rules on benefits for Disabled people, and discrimination at work!; Campaigning for reasonable adjustments at work; time off during the day for ante-natal appointments; the plight of young workers with no future of a decent pension at a reasonable age!!

Violence In The Workplace was a universal concern to unions from many areas, including schools, the Courts, Fire Service, justice, NHS; Police Surveillance; Stop And Search; Later State and TPS pensions, and the issues of resulting old age poverty, due to older teachers being 'got rid of' years before their pensions kicked in! (Resulting in them receiving a Reduced Pension.  And having to live without their State pension, for a number of years!)

Shami Chakrabarti  - the Director of Liberty also spoke about the Government's attack on Trade Unionists and the Movement in general.
Briefly, you might be interested in some of her key quotes as follows: 'Inequality Always Begins With Divide And Rule'
Beware of the Government's line' The Innocent Have Nothing To Fear' re: en masse routine surveillance. Remember Doreen Lawrence!

She spoke of the positive role played by women in Trade Unions, and urged all unions to ' Push them to the front, to the microphones, to the leadership of your unions'

This Government should be working with unions to resolve their concerns, not simply trying to restrict their activities. '

'Women will be the biggest losers in this onslaught! '

'The Government is on the wrong side of Humanity!!' '

'Please Join Liberty!'

I've loved the TUC  Congress. Time to come home to Oxfordshire!!!

Sarah Carter
President of Oxforshire NUT Association

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