PCS delegation on the 26 March TUC demo, 2011. Photo: Senan (uploaded 16/02/2022)
PCS delegation on the 26 March TUC demo, 2011. Photo: Senan

Katrine Williams, PCS Member

Nominations for the 2022 PCS union president and national executive elections closed on 10 March. Details of branch nominations have now been published, and these show increased support for the Broad Left Network – the left rank-and-file group supported by Socialist Party members.

The Broad Left Network presidential candidate, Socialist Party member Marion Lloyd, received 45 nominations from all parts of the union. Incumbent president Fran Heathcote received 60 nominations, and the other candidate Bev Laidlaw 16.

The 45 nominations secured by Marion Lloyd this year is an increase on her 2021 total of 42. This contrasts with the nominations for her opponents which have gone down. The substantially reduced nominations for Heathcote shows the current Left Unity leadership is increasingly seen as a failure – having mounted no serious challenge to government attacks on PCS members.

The reduced support for the third candidate, Laidlaw shows the Independent Left group she represents is not regarded as a serious alternative.

In terms of the number and spread across the union’s membership groups, it is clear from her nominations that Marion Lloyd is the candidate best placed to challenge Heathcote in this election.

It is also clear that Marion’s increased nominations reflect a mood in the union for a fresh approach: for a leadership that gives members the confidence and the means to fight on the issues that matter to them. This is more important than ever as rising prices generally, and energy price increases in particular, tear huge holes in our household budgets.

The current leadership, faced with Tory attacks on our pay, “parked”, in their words, the 2020 pay claim. They went on to tell the Tories that a way round their pay freeze could be found by selling conditions for pay. We can’t afford another year of this leadership.

We call upon activists to unite behind Marion’s candidacy and the full Broad Left Network slate for a union democratically controlled through its elected lay structures. A leadership which will actively coordinate across the union our fight on Covid-19 safety, pay, jobs, pensions and office closures. A leadership which will work to build public sector union opposition to the Tory attacks.

The PCS postal ballot for president and national executive opens Thursday 21 April and closes Thursday 12 May.

Support Marion Lloyd for PCS president. Support the Broad Left Network candidates for the PCS national executive. For more information see pcsbln.wordpress.com.