Sunday, 15 February 2015

Education is the Key: CWU Black Leadership Weekend School


A brief post as I am just back at Ruskin to do some email before dashing to Belfast for a few days with my family for a fine blend of politics/culture.

I wanted to send a note of thanks to the black CWU activists I have been with since Friday attending the leadership course at the union's education centre in Alvescot, Oxfordshire.

I must also thank Trish Lavelle (CWU Head of Education) for her tireless effort in getting this course (and its allied courses) off the ground, and for Wilf Sullivan for being this weekend's guest speaker and for delivering a masterclass in the sociology/politics of race and work/employment..

Wilf had originally been invited to speak on the consequences of austerity for BME communities, but felt, rightly, it needed contextualising in issues of the political economy of race and work - it was a wonderful to sit and listen to this.

So, thanks to Nimisha, Karen, Andy, Ceaford, Jay, Ste, Colin and Ian - I hope to seem them all on the follow-on course in April.

The picture below shows Wilf third from right.

I took the title of this post from the feedback from one of the final activities where the group were challenged to identify strategies to overcome real dilemmas in challenging workplace racism, responding to the rise of the far right, encouraging BME communities to vote, and a key response was that education is key.

I pointed out that this response was fitting, as the motto adopted for the CWU's education centre is: Justice is the goal, solidarity is the tool, education is the key.

I wish all of the CWU activists I was with this weekend the very best in their efforts in building strong trade union organisation in their respective workplaces, and for ensuring that black workers play a vital role in this.

In Solidarity


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