South West Trades Unionists support call for Trades Councils' rights

This is a Bridgwater TUC Press release on a debate which took place at the AGM of the South West TUC.


Delegates to the South West Region TUC Annual Conference at the weekend overwhelmingly backed a call to support the re-admission of local trades councils into the Trades Union Congress, with only one large union voting against.


The motion, moved by Dave Chapple for Bridgwater Trades Council, noted that


“In Wales and Scotland local trades councils have the right to elect delegates and submit motions to their respective national TUC’s. We therefore agree that trades councils should now also have the right to elect delegates and submit motions to the Trades Union Congress, via their own Trades Councils’ Annual Conference, the details to be decided by the TUC General Council once the principle has been established.”


Seconder Vicky Nash from the NUT, spoke of the invaluable support trades councils had given to her union, not just in the current dispute, but against Academies and other Private Finance Initiatives.


Andy Robertson, Trades Councils’ National Joint Consultative Committee, effectively dismissed objections from UNISON delegates, that trades union delegations accountability could be compromised if trades councils delegates and motions were allowed at Congress.

Significant support came from other unions including Rowena Hayward from the GMB, Phil Bialyk, RMT; Kev Beazer, CWU; UNITE /AMICUS and UNITE/TGWU.


With only one large union voting against, this vote should increase the chances of the RMT rule change to this year’s TUC, which would re-enfranchise trades councils, being carried.

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