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From The Socialist newspaper, 8 October 2014

Training tomorrow's trade union militants

Young workers and trade unionists marching for jobs, photo Paul Mattsson

Young workers and trade unionists marching for jobs, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Matt Whale, Chesterfield Socialist Party

The East Midlands region ran a successful event to help train newer Socialist Party unionists how to work effectively in their union. A dozen mostly young members from five different unions attended the day school in Chesterfield on 20 September.

The event was run by Dave Gorton, East Midlands Socialist Party trade union organiser. Dave introduced the opening discussion on our party's history in the movement and our role as Marxists in the workplace.

Everyone was encouraged to raise issues or ask questions on matters in their own workplace. These ranged from problems that arise in multiple workplaces to being asked to represent people with racist views.

The afternoon session featured some role play. We simulated a union branch meeting, complete with agenda, reports and motions. We had to decide if and when to intervene as if we were the only Socialist Party member present. This was a great opportunity for us to ask questions on terminology. We also learnt some different approaches the party may take to the same issue, depending on the mood of the workers and the meeting.

Finally there was a brief introduction to casework, aimed at us looking beyond each individual member's problems to see recurring patterns in a workplace.

In the pub afterwards (run by local party member Trevor Maris!) all of us agreed the day was a huge success. We're going to meet again next year to discuss how we've been able to apply the skills we learnt. This will be vital for each of us to carry on the key work of our party in building and galvanising trade union activity.

If your region is interested in knowing a bit more about the day school, or even want Dave to come and run something similar, please email davegorton@gmail.com.

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In The Socialist 8 October 2014:


Socialist Party news and analysis

We need ideas to change the world

NHS - The black hole

UK - A tax haven for the super-rich

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

South Africa: "A workers' party must emerge"

Middle East: Repel IS and Western imperialism

Coordinated attacks on Hong Kong movement

Ebola crisis: Consequence of profit before health

Stop corporate plunder of Bangladesh energy


Socialist Party workplace news

We can beat the pay freeze!

Public sector: why we have to strike

RMT tube workers join October action

Teachers: Pay rise? What pay rise?

Support Care UK day of action

Sheffield: Green workers red with anger

M25 maintenance workers protest


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Training tomorrow's trade union militants

Finance to fight for the future

School students organise disabled rights meeting

Ice cream, you scream, we all scream for 10 now!


Readers' comments

Exhaustion from buzzer to buzzer

Bedroom Tax: Still making tenants' lives hell

Scotland: Workers need a new mass party

Correction: Labour's private health links are worse!

Thatcher's enemies within


Obituary

Andrew Price: Fighter, teacher, party campaigner


 

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