15 September 2010
This week's TUC Congress is rightly dominated by discussion about the deficit-cutting plans of the Con-Dem coalition and the response of trade unionists to October's Spending Review.
What shape will that response take: leadership of a widespread community based effort to thwart the worst excesses of the new government? Or a programme of coordinated and extensive industrial action? At the very least preparations are underway for a demonstration on 19 October ahead of Chancellor George Osborne's major statement. BECTU is sure to be there.
BECTU's participation at the Manchester based conference started on Monday with a contribution to the debate about the repeal of anti-trade union laws.
Our delegation is also set to feature at the end of the event in discussions about TUC actions on the many motions debated each year. BECTU's motion calls on TUC organisers to publish a formal written report for delegates.
'The BBC should expand the Asian Network'
BECTU leant its support yesterday to a motion on the BBC's remit submitted by the Musicians' Union. Assistant general secretary, Luke Crawley, argued that the Asian Network was exactly the kind of output which the BBC should be producing given its responsibility to serve audiences not provided for by the market. Luke Crawley went further and said that the BBC should be expanding this kind of production.
Jeremy Dear, NUJ, general secretary took the opportunity to bring delegates up to date with union plans in the BBC pensions dispute. Earlier this week, the joint unions announced strike dates in the dispute.
Jeremy Dear told delegates that commitment, dedication and skills are not built by attacking staff conditions.