GMB Magazine GMB25 Contact Summer 2016 - Page 9

Visit GMB online at STAGE ANTICS Jeremy Corbyn met blacklisted GMB members at Congress. TALES OF CONGRESS The Press Association’s Alan Jones on Congress’ important work… T he first annual GMB Congress under the leadership of Tim Roache had a familiar feel, with debates on Trident, worker exploitation, blacklisting and – of course – someone dressed up as an animal! Paul Kenny’s appearance with the London Region delegation also helped, although it’s clear that the worlds of work and politics are changing. The sun shone throughout the Bournemouth Congress, but storm clouds are gathering across many industries where GMB has members, from the crisis gripping steel to the obscene explosion of zero hours contracts and question marks over the future of nuclear power. Tim Roache used his speech to pledge to build a 21st century union that looks, sounds, communicates and organises in the most modern way, attracting new, young recruits while continuing to campaign against injustice – whichever form it takes. JEREMY CORBYN The Labour leader spent time with ch. GMB Young Members after his spee Communications is a crucial battleground in politics as well as industry, and GMB has embraced social media while realising the importance of broadcasters and the written press – national and local – to highlight its work. STANDING OVATION This year’s Congress attracted a wealth of national speakers, including Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. He received a standing ovation after a forceful defence of workers’ rights, including a pledge to repeal the Trade Union Act. He told delegates that the UK workplace is now one of the most unequal in the developed world, and GMB continues to campaign against unscrupulous bosses. One campaign which has ended successfully is the long-running fight for justice for construction workers who were blacklisted, often for just being in a union. A compensation settlement has finally been reached, and several of those caught up in the outrage told their stories. People like Peter Feather, 58, from Rotherham, who was blacklisted for being a shop steward, causing huge suffering to his family; or Mike Rayner, 52, from the Wirral, who couldn’t even get work abroad after his name was added to the file. PUBLIC INQUIRY Dave Smith of the Blacklist Support Group also gave one of his trademark barnstorming speeches, pledging to continue campaigning ELEANOR MARX AWARD Cath Murphy, middle, received her award from Rachel Holmes (right) and Mary Turn er, who herself picked up an OBE in the Que en’s birthday honours. Congratulations all round! for a public inquiry after one was finally held into the Hillsborough disaster. Tim Roache spoke movingly about being at the ground on the fateful day, not realising the extent of the carnage, and delegates heard an emotional speech by Margaret Aspinall of H[؛ܛY\ܝܛ\ ۈBH]\]H\HوYZ[[[]Z\BX[X\]\[و[B[YKPۙܙ\ MYܙYYۘ]BL H\ܝܛ\ [][[X[ H\H[Y\[ݙ\[\ۈHYKۈB\Y\ۈوHYZ\Y\[Hܛ[HZ] X\[\[Y\Y[ܛ[HX\ˋY]Kݚ[]P[XYH^B]ۘ\H[˂BUY\Қ[\ЂH\Y\‚PY[X؜H[]H\\X\][\˂XB\[[XX]˙Xܙ˝Z BPK][ۘ[K[BM ̌ M LΌL‚