July 2016

Wolverhampton, Bilston & District Trades Union Council Delegate Minutes 21 July 2016 1. Welcome and Introductions to delegates and visitors plus apologies: Present – Sis Taylor(UNITE-CYW), Halfpenny (NUT), Weaver, Whyte (UNISON Gen) Bros Kelleher, Deacon, Pugh, Turner, Morris (UNISON Gen), Rahimi (UNITE), J Grant (UCU), Childs (CWU), Brackenridge (Labour Group, FBU) Apologies Sis Battell (NASUWT), Dixon, Brealey (UNISON Gen) Bro S Grant(NUT), Martin (MU), Juss (GMB) All were welcomed and introduced. 2.Minutes of Meeting: 16 June 2016 agreed with correction that Bro Martin (MU), and Sis Whyte (UNISON) had given apologies which should be added for a correct record. Matters Arising: 3) Death of Jo Cox MP message of condolence sent to her constituency Labour Party. 3. No executive meeting, Bro Kelleher working at Tolpuddle. Correspondence: 1) Greig Campbell (former visiting speaker) has now produced a booklet, ‘In the Shadow of Elisabeth, The Battle for Bilston Steelworks’, and this is available to delegates. There is also an exhibition ‘Tempered not Quenched – The Battle for Bilston’s Steelworks’ 10th June 2016 to 9 October 2016. 2) Burston School Strike Sunday 4 September, agreed to donate cost of 3 tickets £36, for Coach from Coventry. Details on Website http://www.wolvestuc.org.uk/ 3) Venezuela Solidarity AGM 15 October London, Booklet on Workers’ Rights Circulated 4) Defend Council Housing campaign meeting 23 July 1-5pm Collier Room, Manchester Methodist Central Building, Oldham Street M1 1JQ. Put Link on website 6) Action for Rail 7-9am 16 August, 1,000 postcards ordered. Facebook event 7) Palestine Solidarity Campaign reaffiliation agreed £25. 8) Midlands TUC Pensioners Network agreed to help funds with a donation of £50. 9) Midlands TUC meeting tomorrow July 22, 12noon 24 Livery Street , Birmingham, UNISON office re organising Anti-Racist Music Events. Bro Turner will try to drop in. 11) Chainmakers Festival, Saturday 2 July, was a good idea but publicity too late. Leaflets in windows, more local publicity so shopkeepers know what is happening. Bro Kelleher will email information for debrief. 12) Midlands TUC statement on EU referendum vote circulated. 14) Wolves Pride, LGBT network donation. Planned for October 1 with march around town. Trades Council to express full support and circulate information to branches. £50 donation agreed. 15) Mary Quaile club £7,000 appeal noted. 16) Following TUC request for pictures regarding Trades Councils it was agreed to send pictures of Mayday, Love Unions, International visitors,and Workers’ Memorial Day. 17) Fascist Britain First to hold rally in Coventry 30 July. Will send statement of support for tomorrow. 19) Nicaragua Solidarity Campaign, affiliation request of £75, agreed to send a donation of £25. 20) North Staffs TUC summer social, 7pm London Alehouse Stoke delegates invited. 21) Merchandise sales – stall at Chainmakers, Morning Star etc £85. 4. Reports/discussion: a] Delegates’ workplace reports – none b] Secretary’s report – Action for Rail day of action on 16 August for an affordable railway under public ownership. Leafleting at station from 7 to 9am. TUC courses sign up now, last occasion they will be put on due to lack of funding. Unwelcome the Tory Conference to Birmingham 2016, Saturday 1 October Counter Conference, Sunday 2 October TUC demo/rally with Victoria Square and Colmore Row booked. Owen Jones to speak plus other national and local speakers. c] Wolverhampton Palestine Solidarity Campaign – Slow response from Ian Brookfield re West Midlands Pension investments. Successful fundraising garden party. National campaign concerning 3 authorities – Leicester, Swansea, Gwynedd to not buy goods from occupied territories. Local Authorities won. Report to the Labour Party from Shami Chakrabarti ‘not all Jews are Zionists and not all Zionists are Jews’. d] Miscellaneous Items – Wolverhampton Federation of Council Tenants- Housing planning act new law need to keep going? NK to investigate. Bro Brackenridge raised the following points – FBU (i) Future governance working group of Local Authorities to look at spending cuts 50% 2010 to 2020.(ii) Opposition to Police Commissioners increased role including fire service. (iii) Smaller fire authority (iv) Absorbed into regional Mayor’s role. Will try to have representation from whole authority. “not peasant”. Raised over £700 from Glastonbury and Tolpuddle. At Tolpuddle folk very positive towards Corbyn. 5. Discussion on Future of Labour Party – There was a wide ranging discussion amongst delegates on this subject. Some delegates are members of the Labour party but not all. Bro Brackenridge as a Labour Councillor was able to answer some issues raised about the structure and day to day running of the Labour Party. Some of the points raised are mentioned below. There is a leadership election between Corbyn and Smith. Massive increase in membership. 170 MPs are not currently supporting Corbyn. Do constituencies support those MPs? What will happen if Corbyn remains leader? Blairites and middle ground are base of party. Major trade unions are backing Corbyn. It is disappointing and annoying that Labour party members can be ignored by MPs. There is likely to be a split if Corbyn remains leader. Disappointment in some local MPs. Are there ways we as trade unionists can work with the Labour Party. Different groups – ‘Progress’, ‘Momentum’, ‘Labour First’

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