It’s fair to say that the last few weeks have been something of a whirlwind since I decided to stand for the position of MU General Secretary. It wasn’t a decision I came to lightly and I could never have imagined all those years ago, when picking up an instrument for the first time and getting involved with trade unions, that my journey would bring me to this point. Thanks dad.
So far, apart from formulating my commitments to members for my campaign, which in part at least has been a coalescing of numerous thoughts I’ve had for some years about how the MU can improve things; there’s been the MU day job to do, helping members and negotiating with employers, and I’ve been keeping up my music activities with rehearsals and gigs. In all of this, family time is important too so it’s been a bit of a juggling act. Fortunately, my partner is very supportive of my decision and encouraged me to stand, and her skills have come in handy on the IT front.
What I’ve been bowled over by is the enthusiastic response from members I’ve spoken to about my decision to stand for GS. Members’ excitement has been palpable when I’ve told them of my plans. It feels like the time for change has come. The MU structures have served us well for the past few decades and I want to see our union build on that and embrace the future, dealing with the challenges positively, so that we can be fighting fit for the next 20 years embracing diversity, building our membership base, and empowering members – all of these things are absolutely inseparable if we are to succeed. They are structural reform issues we need to embrace.
Coming back to members’ enthusiasm when speaking to me, I’ve been offered their support and help in my campaign, been asked whether they can join my campaign team, had them volunteer to advocate for me in their workplaces, had offers of professional video production for my social media etc, and even members wishing to donate money to pay for the many things I’ll need to do in my campaign. Wow, just wow, I feel so blown away by all of this and I want to say a big, big thank you to everyone who’s been in touch or has offered their support. If I’m successful in getting elected it just makes me even more determined to repay all of this faith already shown in me.
That’s it for now, but if you want to know more about my campaign, what I aim to do if elected, want a chat about it, or to invite me to your workplace to speak to fellow members – then just get in touch. I’m also interested in receiving posts for my blog here on what you want to see from the MU as we move forward. Your voice being heard is very important to me. We can only successfully face the challenges ahead if we meet them together.