PCS Conference: view from the rostrum

Bootle Taxes delegate Margi Henderson gives her views on attending conference for the first time.

My first experience of speaking at national conference was on a motion in favour of Strike pay.

I didn’t have anything prepared, but decided that I would like to speak. I climbed on to the stage infront of 800 people – with the big screen behind me – and spoke. I mentioned how we know that the strike is our greatest weapon, but with Group and National action a reality we need a strike fund in place so members struggling on low incomes with rising living costs can play the full part in industrial action that they wish.

On reflection, I could have said more and if I am given the oppurtunity again I probably will. It’s not so scary once you have taken that first step up to the stage. After all, you are only speaking infront of your comrades, for our members and on subjects that matter and affect each and every one of us.

Conference debated motions on some very serious issues, such as paid leave when caring for terminally ill family and the need for a policy on domestic violence to support our members. Reps who had dealt with such cases were visibly moved, their dedication and hard work a real tribute to our movement.

National conference was very motivating and enjoyable. I felt privileged to hear Doreen Lawrence speak on the work she is doing for her son Stephen’s legacy, and the witty and rousing address by MP John McDonnell as he described this coalition government as brutal and nasty. It was was absolutely fantastic!

Read more reports on PCS Annual Delegate Conference 2012 on the national website.

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