From the TUC

Film an important art form for trade unions

18 Nov 2009, By

This has been quite a busy couple of months for me, in addition to other things I’ve been busy delivering training for the extremely popular Lights, Camera, Action course.  I have been delivering courses (film making and editing) for about eighteen months now, and the courses have produced a growing collection of films, in fact around thirty films have been made by the students on these two day courses (and can be viewed at StrongerUnions).

These films, I believe are important artefacts, reflecting trade union campaigns of the time (for example NUT’s film) and helping to recording public perceptions of current issues (voxpops on the recession), whilst at the same time assisting trade union organisers/officers to learn new skills and to step outside of their own trade union structures, to speak to the public, and to find out about what they think about the work that we do.

What always pleases me about the course is that students go out and speak to the public, and come back pleasantly surprised to realise that people are pretty positive about trade unions role in society and recognise the valuable contribution that they make to building an equitable society.

 These courses always surprise me too because I meet incredibly creative people (I believe that the trade union movement has a disproportionate number of creative people).  These are people who care about social justice, fairness and equality and want to gather new skills to take that message out in to wider society.

I am please also to note that BECTU officers have been on our course and recognise the valuable contribution that it is making to organising and campaigning work, and the level that it is delivering at is not in anyway undermining the film industry, in fact stimulating demand in the industry.

 I am pleased to say that film is making an important impact on the way that trade unions work, making some of the best use of online communications to get our key messages out to a wide audience: Why join unions? Why get involved? What are trade unions all about?

 ‘Film is an important art form; films entertain, educate, enlighten and inspire audiences. Films are also artefacts which, reflect cultures and affects them’. -Wiki