Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Yours truly new shop steward......

Had a T&G union shop meeting today. One of the items on the agenda was who was gonna be rep and before I could even say, "lets have a democratic debate", I was nominated unopposed and was seconded rather quickly while yours truly was eating an apple. The art of mastication is important as choking can result. They were literally onto the next item before I eventually swallowed and said, "Oi, what about what I think"?...

And after a lot of flannel and soft soaping me about how I have "lots of experience" (cheers comrades) they all gave me those hang dog looks. I relented as some schmuck as gotta do it! The reason I was cautious was because in my previous job I was branch secretary for 4 years and for the last year I was there things got very bad such as witch hunts. It wasn't a good time and support wasn't exactly forthcoming from branch or regional officer. I felt a bit cast adrift.

In my current job, it is obviously a different situation but my worry and fear is lack of support and being left to muddle alone (and I know this is the experience of other trade union activists). I mentioned that in the meeting that it is the responsibility of the whole branch and it should not be left one or two people to make decisions. I said it is fundmentally about unity and solidarity etc. And they all murmured in agreement. By then I was expecting a rendition of the "Internationale"....

Well, it will mean more trips to the pub to discuss union stuff and towards the end of the evening there's usually a drunken discussion about your favourite top 3 books written by Lenin. Stroppybird will think I will be right at home then.....and just for her here's my top 3 'cos I know she'll wanna know ;)

The State and revolution
What is to be done?
The emancipation of women