The Stronger Unions blog is primarily authored by staff from the TUC’s Organising Team.
I’m a TUC policy officer working on public sector issues. Before joining the TUC I was a policy officer and advisor at the Local Government Association and previously I worked for the European Parliamentary Labour Party and as a full-time elected student union officer at Sheffield University.
I’m the Director of the TUC’s Organising Academy, which means I’m responsible for the development and delivery of the TUC’s training programme for union organisers and officers relating to organising. You can find out more about our programme here.
I’ve been an organiser for a variety of unions as well as working on union learning projects and lately running a trade union education centre. I came to union organising after being involved in community campaigning which I try to do when I have time. My favourite slogan at the moment is ‘I’m an organiser, what’s your superpower?’
I’m a policy officer with the TUC’s snappily titled European Union and International Relations Department. I cover trade, decent work and international labour standards, as well as our work on priority countries such as Iraq Palestine/Israel and Burma. I’m also the TUC’s backstop on a range of complicated international meetings that begin with the letter “G”. I represent the TUC on the board of the Ethical Trading Initiative and as an alternate member on the even more snappily titled, Steering Board of the UK National Contact Point for the OECD Guidelines on Multinational Enterprises.
Before joining the TUC in 2007, I did a Masters in development studies at the LSE, masqueraded as an industrial relations lawyer in Melbourne, and worked as a policy officer for a Southeast Asian development NGO based in Thailand from 2002-2004. When pressed at immigration, I claim to be Australian.
I’m the TUC’s National Organiser and I lead for the TUC on issues around union organising and recruitment. I’m also responsible for the TUC Young Members’ Forum.
Frances O’Grady is General Secretary of the TUC, and is the first woman ever to hold this post. She was on the Resolution Foundation’s Commission on Living Standards, and has been a member of the Low Pay and the High Pay Commissions. Frances is a strong believer in protecting the public service ethos, opposes privatisation and leads TUC campaigning on the NHS.
You can read Frances’ full biography at the TUC website.
I’m Senior Policy Officer for Health and Safety at the TUC. For nine years I was a member of the board of the Health and Safety Executive, and am currently a board member of the European Agency for Health and Safety and the European Foundation for the Improvement of Living and Working Conditions. I also chair the Occupational Diseases working party of the European Commission’s Health and Safety Advisory Committee and am Vice-chair of the Panel of Experts on Occupational Diseases of the UN’s International Labour Organisation.
I’m Campaigns and New Media Officer at the TUC, working on campaigns and advice online, as well as chipping in with issues around how new media (particularly social media) are impacting on industrial relations. I’m always tinkering with the system behind this blog (so if something’s broken it’s likely my fault) and on housekeeping duties to help out the other contributors.
I’ve been at the TUC since 2002, and before joining the team here, I worked on websites, eCommerce and online campaigning for Oxfam GB. In busman’s holiday style, I spend some of the spare time my kids leave me in blogging and online activism.
I’m Regional Secretary of the Northern TUC, promoting trade unionism and campaigning on behalf of working people. I work with trade unions to campaign for more and better jobs, fairer pay and better equality in the north east and Cumbria, and ensuring the trade union voice in the region is clearly heard. I’m a keen cyclist and passionate about live music, including being a part-time roadie for Eliza Smiles (one of the best young bands to come out of Tyneside).
I’m a Policy Officer at the TUC, covering issues around transport, public service reform and civil society. I’m responsible for the TUC’s work on public service reform and have led the work on the TUC’s response to the Open Public Services white paper, as well as authoring the TUC’s report Civil Society and Public Services: Collaboration not Competition. I’m particularly interested in the relationship between public services and civil society, social enterprises, mutuals and co-operatives.
I’ve been at the TUC for 8 years and was formerly policy officer for our London region and national youth officer. I have previously worked for the Mayor of London as well as several years in the civil service. I’ve been an active rep for both PCS and UNISON, and was also a founder member of Justice for Colombia.
I’ve been the Head of the TUC’s European Union and International Relations Department since 2003 and have worked at the TUC since 1984. I’ve been a member of the Health and Safety Commission, the Civil Justice Council, the Social Security Advisory Committee and the Industrial Injuries Advisory Council and now I’m on the Wilton Park Advisory Council. I’m particularly interested in the trade union movements of Australia, Iran and Iraq, the Middle East and the USA, and I’m interested in migration, trade, and building trade union capacity. I’m the Secretary of TUC Aid, the TUC’s charitable union development arm and on the Robin Hood Tax campaign steering committee.
My wife Sarah works for the University of Westminster and my son Charles is in Year 10, working his way through his GCSEs. I’m a season ticket holder at Saracens, and a member of the Wine Society and the GMB.
I was appointed as Assistant General Secretary of the TUC in February 2013. I lead on a number of key policy areas and have responsibility for the TUC’s regional councils, organising and inter-union relations. Prior to taking up this appointment, I headed the TUC’s Organisation & Services department, leading on issues including public services, and playing a key role in the TUC’s broader campaigning work.
I’m Senior Equality Policy Officer in the TUC’s Equality and Employment Rights Department. I cover equal pay, discrimination law and family-friendly rights. I’m also responsible for the TUC Equality Audits which look at how unions are ensuring effective representation within their internal structures and how they are progressing workplace equality issues through collective bargaining.
Prior to joining the TUC in 2007, I worked for the employment research company Incomes Data Services as Deputy Editor for workplace diversity and discrimination law. I was also an active NUJ rep. I’ve been a trustee of the charity Working Families, which campaigns on behalf of working parents and carers, since 2007 and co-chair of trustees since 2012.
I’m a Policy Officer in the TUC’s European Union and International Relations Department, specialising in international labour standards. I’m also the TUC’s delegate to the International Labour Organisation (ILO).
The blog also periodically features topical guest posts from external policy experts in different areas. Guest posts are intended to widen debate and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the TUC or its policy staff. Guest authors have included:
- Stewart Acuff: US organiser and writer
- Peter Bakvis: Washington representative, ITUC
- Brendan Barber: Former TUC General Secretary
- Tony Burke: Assistant General Secretary, Unite the Union
- Sharan Burrow: General Secretary, ITUC
- Anna Burton: Founder, Neontetra Films
- Peter Coldrick: TUC Member on EESC
- Macdara Doyle: Full Time Official, ICTU
- Simon Dubbins: International Director, Unite the Union
- Sue Ferns: Head of Research and Specialist Services, Prospect
- Billy Hayes: General Secretary, CWU
- Eric Lee: Founder, Labourstart
- Tim Lezard: Co-Editor Union News
- Lesley Mercer: TUC President 2013 & Director, CSP
- Simon Parry: Consultant, infobo.com
- Kevin Rogers: Green Workplace Rep, Unite
- Simon Sapper: National Officer, CWU
- Grahame Smith: General Secretary, STUC
- Martin Spence: Assistant General Secretary, BECTU
- Ricky Tomlinson: Actor and campaigner
- Garry Williams: Young Members’ Officer, UNISON