I’ve produced a video on equality, diversity and inclusion, which you’ll find on my campaign video page.
This is a defining issue for all trade unions, including the MU, especially if we are to improve things not just for musicians but in wider society too.
In the video I talk about how we should be organised and structured as a union if we are serious about ensuring equality, diversity and inclusion for all.
Giving the power and responsibility to members to self organise and set up committees representing their specific issues is absolutely key – be it Women’s, Black Members’, Disabled Members’, LGBTQ+, young members, or other such committees.
Frankly, to do this, and be future-fit, we will need to change our rules, change how we operate, and change our approach to education and training. It will require us to think differently too, about the issues we all face. This is what the most progressive unions have done and so should we.
Our rules were drafted in a different era where things were much different, and so currently all the real power in this area rests with the Union’s Executive Committee and with officials. It can mean we say the right things but fail to take the appropriate action, meaning any real progress stalls, and we can end up going round in circles. The most successful unions operate the kind of rules and structures that I advocate, and have fully embraced them, making significant gains on equality issues.
Under my proposed model we will be able to achieve better success at driving change. Our members and activists who feel the impact of inequality will feel empowered and confident enough about tackling these issues. They know they’ll get the full support of the MU and protection to do that under the rules. Our equality activists are therefore best placed to create the strategies and lead on them in order to tackle the structural inequalities in our industry.
Simply allowing the status quo and current power structures in our union to remain as they are is the opposite of ensuring equality, diversity and inclusion. If we don’t make this structural change within the MU to show we’re serious about change, it will also send out the wrong message to our industry.
So my agenda is about making these necessary changes to take our great union forward to empower you, to help us to help you make a difference. And in doing so, be the true champions we should be in our union and in our industry for equality, diversity and inclusion.
This will ensure we are relevant and representative of and for ALL musicians.
You can join me in our journey together to achieve this by voting Stephen Brown for General Secretary. Let’s “Dare For Better”.