Britain: Unions ‘working on change’

A new publication on unions and climate change will be launched this week at the national congress of UK national trade union confederation TUC.

The discussion document, produced by the environmental thinktank Green Alliance, includes contributions from union leaders including Jack Dromey of Unite, Sally Hunt of UCU, Paul Noon of Prospect, Keith Sonnet of UNISON and Dan Shears of GMB.

Writing in TUC’s public policy Touchstone blog,  Green Alliance director Stephen Hale points to the example of the now well-established and respected US Blue Green Alliance – a coalition of environmental and union groups.
Commenting on the publication, Working on Change, he says: “The most uplifting contribution comes from Bob Baugh, executive director of the American AFL-CIO Industrial Union Council. He tells an inspiring story from across the Atlantic. The Blue-Green coalition in the US has united over six million workers and many of the key environmental groups in the US in the fight for the tremendous manufacturing and employment opportunities of the transition to a low carbon economy.

“Their efforts have yielded rapid and impressive dividends following the election of President Barack Obama, in particular through the stimulus package and the Clean Energy and Security Act.

“We at Green Alliance are excited by the growing engagement and commitment of trade unions here in the UK to the opportunities presented by action on climate change. We hope this can be the start of the creation of a movement of the American scale and impact here in the UK.”

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