Branch and NEC solidarity with #iamirish and #weareirish

Another motion was passed at the emergency chapel committee meeting on Wednesday 26 April (after a non-quorate branch meeting on Tuesday). I (Donnacha DeLong, branch treasurer/membership and recruitment officer) have been working with the #IamIrish campaign since last Autumn and spoke on a panel at one of their events.

The racist abuse of the campaign was brought to my attention when an abusive tweet was directed at me. I looked at the tweeter’s other post and he had both tweeted and retweeted some of the most horrible racist abuse I’ve seen in a long time – some of using explicitly Nazi quotes and images.

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#HeartNUJ: Branch activity is the foundation of our union

This article originally appeared on the main NUJ site.

Donnacha DeLong, branch activist and NUJ rep

Why do I do this? I’ve been active in the NUJ since I was a student member more than 20 years ago. I’ve been a chapel officer, a branch officer, a member and chair of the national executive and other councils, vice-president and president of the union.

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Talking about strikes

If you went by what the media generally reports, you would think that unions are all about strikes. The rail unions, in particular, whether it’s Aslef on the Southern Service or the RMT and TSSA on the Tube, are currently in news because of their strikes. Even doctors in the BMA were on strike last year.

The reality is that unions are about a lot more than just strikes, but the other things they do are somewhat less newsworthy. The Trade Union Congress has 50 member unions, including the NUJ, and represents almost 5.6 million workers. Non-TUC unions accounted for around 700,000 more members in 2015, bringing the overall figure to over 6 million.

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