Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1093/30999
The Socialist 1 July 2020 |
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Equity union president elections: fight for resources for all
Equity's new policy document outlines an alternative model for funding and making the arts, photo Amanda N Sherrington/CC (Click to enlarge)
Performing arts union Equity is electing its president and ruling council this summer, at the same time that industry leaders are warning of widespread and imminent collapse.
There are three presidential candidates. The incumbent, actor Maureen Beattie, and stage manager Adam Burns, describe themselves as socialists. Both also pledged support for no-cuts council budgets in a branch hustings on 24 June. DJ and entertainer Dave Eager is a long-standing representative of the union's right wing.
Adam's vision for the presidency has some detail, and he promises to encourage grassroots activism. However, we have concerns that his approach on issues including the race equality controversy within the union could lack balance and result in harmful divisions.
Maureen sees the presidency primarily as ambassadorial, and has not presented as much programme for her second term, beyond important campaigns against bullying and harassment. However, her record does include listening to and backing progressive initiatives. Socialist Party members in Equity are recommending a vote for Maureen.
Whatever the outcome, Equity's president will need to navigate complex internal and external challenges. We believe the key is to lead a fight for better conditions and resources for all, using the union's radical 'Performance for All' policies as a template, avoiding the divisive potential for competition between sections of members.
Socialist Party members in Equity