C14 Investing fair funding in public services

Received from: PCS, Unison

Motion 46 and amendments, 47 and amendment and 48 and amendments.

Congress agrees our country is at breaking point. Thirteen years of cuts have left public services in tatters. There are desperate problems in the NHS, the civil service, education, local government and across the whole public sector.

Congress notes that councils across the UK face billions in funding shortfalls, with many declaring bankruptcy. PCSO numbers in England have been cut by 45 per cent since 2010 for example, and SEN, health and social care funding hasn’t kept pace with demand.

The state of the NHS is causing huge concern. Britain has one of the lowest numbers of hospital beds for each head of population of any western country. Disinvestment in public services harms workers and service users. In healthcare, a funding gap of £60bn has emerged since 2008, with UK spending falling behind the historic average.

Congress believes that strong public services are essential to rebuilding a fair economy and ending the cost-of-living scandal. The core role of the civil service in providing objective advice and accountable delivery has been deliberately put at risk. It is haemorrhaging key skills in a wide range of services including health and safety regulation, ensuring plant and animal health, and infrastructure planning.

Cuts contribute to a recruitment and retention crisis – stalled pay compounding the issue. Positions remain unfilled, with heavy demands placed on our remaining workforce, who experience work-related ill-health at rates higher than before Covid-19. Staff vacancies are at record levels, deliberately destroying the NHS to boost the profits of private healthcare companies and create a two-tier system.

Congress notes with concern that, in the face of this crisis, Labour emphasises “reform” of public services including the NHS and refuses to commit to paying NHS medical and support staff including doctors, allied health professionals and nurses and other public servants more than the Tories. Underfunding in maternity units has meant inadequate or no ventilation systems, meaning unsafe levels of Entonox (gas and air) in the air. Maternity staff have been exposed to harmful levels, some units have had to withdraw the use of Entonox as a form of pain relief for maternity service users.

Services fail to meet our communities’ needs – the UK now lags behind international peers on life expectancy and other health outcomes. Rationing emerges, with patients missing out on rehabilitation and other healthcare provision, ruining lives, keeping people out of work, and depriving them of their independence.

Congress calls for restorative funding for public health, enabling disease prevention and adequately resourced children’s services, including health visiting, school nursing and child adolescent mental health services. Congress notes that the most economically disadvantaged children experience a disproportionate impact arising from the degradation of children’s services, including Sure Start closures.

Serious poverty is affecting millions of people. Austerity has cut social security by £14bn and forcing many to use foodbanks, including people in work who are claiming benefits many of whom are our trade union members.

Decimated capital spending corrodes infrastructure. Members work in of inadequate clinical spaces, without staff facilities. The safety and dignity of staff and service users compromised.

Policies like as the Health and Social Care levy are announced with fanfare, then dropped. Remedial initiatives, such as NHS England’s Workforce Plan, come with time-limited funding. This deafens the public to the threats facing us.

The UK will have a general election by January 2025. The public must be able to scrutinise and hold to account prospective candidates – whatever their rosette – about public finances. The campaigning should also highlight the critical importance of multi-year settlements, of enough support staff and management capacity, and of sustained capital spending on infrastructure, without all of which the public stands to lose its return on greater public service investment.

Congress calls for the TUC – with its affiliate unions – to campaign for public service investment. This should include the dissemination of robust evidence demonstrating the case for public finance restoration.

Congress calls on the General Council to:

i. lay bare the brutal record of the Tory government in a series of communications over the next year and call on all political parties to commit to needs-based funding for all public services, ensuring fair wages for those who provide them;

ii. co-ordinate action between unions, give full support to public servants taking industrial action to fight back against cuts, and campaign for:

    • above inflation pay rises for public service workers
    • proper recognition of the important role local government and the civil service plays, and the funding and powers to fulfil its potential
    • a proper workforce plan for policing that cuts crime not PCSOs
    • a national care service ensuring proper funding, decent pay and consistent standards of care
    • investment in the NHS workforce to improve services
    • an end to cuts in schools and colleges, and urgent investment to repair dangerous school buildings
    • fully funded universal childcare with good pay, terms and conditions for the staff that deliver it
    • services to be brought back in-house.

iii. campaign for Labour to commit to funding pay increases for public sector workers that at least match inflation, provide for pay restoration, and to abandon its outdated economic policies, adopting a policy of major investment in public services to fix our broken Britain and to commit to the publication of a cross-governmental strategy for investment in public services to address the alarming rise in poverty and inequality in the UK.

Mover: Unison
Seconded: PCS
Supporters: CSP, Unite, Prospect, RCM, FDA, BDA

C15 Pay review bodies

Received from: College of Podiatry, FDA

Motion 49 and amendment, and 50

Congress recognises that the last year has seen committed public servants left with no option but to strike in pursuit of higher pay rises in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis following over a decade of pay restraint.

All this as our already stretched key public services have struggled to recruit and retain the staff required to deliver the quality services the public rightly deserve. Many public sector workers voted for strike action to protect the services they have committed their lives to.

Congress notes the very different experiences across sectors of pay for members being determined by a pay review body (PRB) and the near collapse of the system in the last 12 months.

Pay review bodies were intended to bring industrial peace, depoliticise bargaining and, through evidence-based approach, help public services address some of the key strategic workforce issues. Governments, of all colours, have interfered in this process so much that the independence of those bodies has been critically undermined. The government has used pay review bodies as a buffer against union action in a period of high inflation.

PRBs can only function effectively if they are independent of interference and direction by government and the evidence of all parties carries equal weight. Unfortunately, in recent years that has not been the case.

During the industrial action disputes of the last 12 months, we have seen some evidence of government and unions negotiating directly and coming to agreements without the involvement of the PRB’s – even if the government has had to dragged to the table on occasions.

As our public services face up to the challenges of the future, a new compact between government and public servants is needed. Pay review bodies have a critical role in ensuring the government is able to deliver quality public services and they can only do this if they have an independent voice, free from political interference.

Congress agrees that collective bargaining is an appropriate vehicle for pay determination for many unions facing hostile employers, and that it can facilitate member engagement in pay campaigns and their outcomes.

Congress agrees that effective review bodies must:

i. have greater remits that give better weight to all of the evidence presented to them, not just the short-term affordability of government

ii. enhance the engagement process with unions

iii. deliver timely pay settlements

iv. enable the longer-term evolution of pay structures and multi-year deals

v. limit the influence of government on appointments.

Congress calls on TUC to:

i. work with unions in different sectors to produce a model template for PRBs and work with affiliates in either making sure that PRBs are fit for purpose or other methods of settling pay, such as direct negotiations, are promoted if more appropriate.

Mover: FDA
Seconder: RCoP
Supporter: PCS

Motion 51 Pay restoration and public sector pay

Received from: SoR

Below inflation and below average pay awards have become a permanent scar across the public sector since Austerity. This is a symptom and cause of the workforce crisis that is undermining services to the public.

On average there is a 21 per cent gap between the rise in national average earnings and NHS professionals’ pay since 2008. There is a similar story across our schools, prison and probation services, local authorities and social services and blue light services.

Under-investment in pay has created a workforce crisis which is impacting on service users every day. In the NHS, failure to invest in radiography staff to meet known future demand has created waiting lists that mean people are suffering for longer and dying unnecessarily because there are insufficient staff to diagnose and treat them. Reducing waiting lists is supposedly our government’s top priority – but their answer to a shortage of high skilled professional workforce is to lower their relative pay. This incentivises more to leave than stay, lowering morale and fuelling the working practices that are unsafe for staff and patients. The only ones guaranteed inflation proof pay rises are those who leave with pensions indexed linked by law.

Congress calls on TUC to:

i. support and promote an index-linked pay restoration guarantee for public servants in work

ii. work with government to secure stable, long term funding support for our public services, supported by independent, transparent auditing and reporting on staffing levels and capacity against known and forecast demand.

Society of Radiographers

C09  Ending child poverty 

Received from: BDA, National Education Union

Motion 26, 27 and amendment

Congress recognises the growing poverty in our society and that differences in the social background of pupils are the primary factor causing inequality in educational outcomes.

Levels of child poverty remain at an unacceptable level, rising from 3.9 million to 4.2 million last year. Many families living in poverty are surviving on low wages and 71 per cent of children living in poverty are in working households.

Congress believes that all children in England should be guaranteed access to the food that they need to live healthy lives and that good nutrition in childhood is essential for this critical period in rapid growth. Without it, health outcomes worsen as do children’s life chances, as well as pressure on the NHS.

The current cost- of-living crisis is seeing rising numbers of families having to make stark choices including whether or not they can afford to feed their children. No government should knowingly allow any child to go hungry when we have the ability to provide support.

Dieticians and other health professionals see the consequences of child food poverty every day with rising malnutrition leading to conditions such as obesity, heart disease and diabetes.

Congress agrees that universal free school meals for all primary school children would reduce inequality and the stigmatisation of pupils experiencing food poverty.

Congress notes that the cost-of-living crisis has further exacerbated inequality and will leave millions of families on or below the poverty line. By the end of 2022, soaring inflation had left households £800 poorer, the biggest fall in more than a Century. In the UK 800,000 children are living in poverty but are not eligible for free school meals, while almost 4 million are experiencing food insecurity.

Congress recognises that we, the trade union movement, have a responsibility to show solidarity with workers, families, and children by making it clear that the Government has utterly failed these students through a decade of failure to address poverty.


i. Condemns the inadequate support to schools during and after the Covid-19 pandemic and the lack of support for pastoral and socio-emotional development;

ii. Congratulates the NEU on their campaign “No Child Left Behind”

III. Calls on the TUC to continue to campaign for free school meals for all primary school children including the Labour Party to commit to this in its General Election Manifesto

iv. Calls on education Unions to jointly advocate for free school meals and ambitious social policies to end poverty.

v. Calls on unions to support the BDA and the education unions in their universal free school meals campaigns.

vi. Calls for the TUC to continue to campaign for the removal of barriers to learning for children such as inadequate social security and costs of schooling;

Mover: NEU
Seconder: BDA
Supporter: UNISON 

C16 Working hours and burnout  

Received from: College of Podiatry, RCM

Motion 52, 53 and amendment 

Conference recognises the pressing issue of employee burnout in the workplace and the detrimental impact it has on worker’s well-being and productivity.

According to the most recent NHS staff survey, only a quarter of the NHS workforce say there are enough staff to do their jobs properly and a third feel burnt out.

Staffing shortages in maternity services are chronic and longstanding, the NHS in England is short of 2,500 midwives. The impact of these shortages are felt by midwives and MSWs on a daily basis.

A survey by the RCM in March found that Midwives and MSWs are working 100,000 unpaid hours a week to prop up maternity services. 74 per cent face unrealistic time pressures and workloads and a majority feel exhausted or burnt out at the end of their shift.

In addition to these extra unpaid hours to fill gaps in rotas employers are increasingly imposing on-call systems on staff on their days off to cover for shortages. This is forced overtime. It is detrimental to the health, safety and wellbeing of staff, and will ultimately exacerbate the staffing crisis by forcing more maternity workers out of the profession.

The blame for the workforce crisis lies squarely at the feet of government. The NHS Long Term Workforce Plan contains commitments around retention of staff including flexible working and health and wellbeing support but urgent action is required.

Proactive steps must be taken to promote the health and wellbeing of workers, such as better communication channels between staff and management so any issues or concerns are addressed in a timely and effective manner. Employers must take immediate action to reduce the stress and fatigue that staff are experiencing.

We must see increased investment for staff development and training, to ensure staff are equipped with the necessary skills and knowledge to effectively manage their workloads and mental health.

Particularly among allied health professionals alike, understanding burnout is a vital factor amidst a workforce crisis of recruitment and retention. These strategies should be based on partnership working principles and recognise trade union health and safety representatives’ key role in inspecting workplaces, inputting to risk assessment processes, and notifying employers of hazards at work.

By addressing employee burnout, we aim to foster healthier and more sustainable working environments that prioritise worker well-being.

Congress calls for:

i. further investment in NHS retention measures that support flexible working and the health and safety of staff

ii. fair pay for the extra hours worked in the NHS

iii. an end to forced overtime through the inappropriate use of on-call systems.

iv. require all workplaces to regularly review their policies and procedures to reduce workloads and ensure better work-life balance for employees

v. advocate for the mandatory adoption of burnout prevention strategies

vi. increase access to mental health support and counselling services, with a focus on early intervention and prevention of burnout.

Mover: RCM
Seconder: RCoP
Supporter : CSP

Motion 54 Our NHS in crisis

Received from: BDA

Congress reaffirms its commitment maintaining an NHS which is universal, equitable, comprehensive, free at the point of delivery and centrally funded. Congress is therefore alarmed at the deepening crisis facing the service and its staff.

Congress welcomes the long-awaited publication of the NHS Workforce Long-Term Plan in July 2023, but remains concerned that it does not provide clarity on detail or funding and that a 15-year plan does little to address the current crisis.

Congress notes that:

i. more than 10,00 patients are waiting 18 months or more for treatment with over 360,00 waiting over a year and waiting times for ambulances are resulting in serious consequences for patients

ii. there are around 112,000 vacancies in the NHS which are predicted to rise as high as 571,000 by 2036 if this trend continues

iii. UK government spending on health is 18 per cent below the EU 14 average

iv. pay for all NHS staff has fallen behind significantly in the 13 years of the Tory government and remains below inflation

v. the current government has failed to address the significant inequalities in the health of the UK population.

Congress therefore calls on the General Council to:

a. prioritise a campaign to protect our NHS by demanding adequate funding and a plan to reverse the current trend of outsourcing and privatisation.

b. work with health unions to press for a real plan for pay restoration.

British Dietetic Association


› Insert new bullet point after v.:
“vi. spending on prevention of long-term conditions, such as diabetes, is inadequate and
leads to long term pressure on the NHS and the economy that can be avoided.”
Royal College of Podiatry

Motion 55 Making midwifery a career accessible to all

Received from: RCM

The NHS Long Term Workforce Plan commits to expanding the number of midwifery apprenticeships to make up five per cent of training places by 2028. The RCM supports apprenticeships as a route into midwifery.

Almost all recruits into midwife degree apprenticeship programmes are already employed in the NHS as maternity support workers. Attrition from programmes has been just 4 per cent (compared to 13 per cent of traditional students). Evaluation of pilot sites is extremely positive.

The NHS is often the largest employer in a local community, as an ‘anchor institution’ it can have a significant impact on those communities as an employer.

Apprenticeships can make access to midwifery more equitable. The abolition of the bursary from 2017 impacted the demographics of applicants onto midwifery degree programmes, the number of older applicants and applicants with caring responsibilities fell. Applicants to midwifery apprenticeships are generally older and from local communities, more likely to remain with the NHS Trust where they learn.

Midwifery education whether through a degree or degree apprenticeship requires a midwifery educator workforce. Numbers of midwife educators have not kept pace with the increase in students and universities face challenges around retention, low pay and heavy workloads. Addressing the issues faced by the midwifery education workforce is fundamental to the success of midwifery education, and the wider maternity workforce.

Congress calls for:

i. the NHS Long Term Workforce Plan apprenticeship commitments to be backed up by the investment required

ii. financial support for student midwives that reflect actual need

iii. action to address the midwifery educator workforce crisis.

Royal College of Midwives

Motions 56 Measures to increase medical students

Received from: HCSA

The NHS workforce plan includes a commitment to double medical school places by 2031.

Congress welcomes the move to increase the pipeline of new doctors resourcing our NHS. The UK sits below OECD averages, with only 3.2 doctors per 1,000 patients. We are overtaken by countries such as Czech Republic, Spain and Austria.

Congress is dismayed by the scant detail on the proposal. There is no information on the specialties into which the new students will graduate. A 4 to 8 per cent shortfall of consultants is predicted by 2036/7. Without a plan for retention, we are simply filling up a leaky bucket.

Congress notes with concern plans to cut the medical degree from five to four years. The proposed internship will fast-track students onto our wards. The current five- or six-year medical degree is fast-paced and teaches vital skills. An internship has the potential for exploitation, while diverting learning time into plugging workforce gaps.

Congress believes plans to launch medical apprenticeships are also of concern. Congress, rigorous training standards must be met for patient safety and to maintain the UK’s record of producing excellent doctors with internationally recognised qualifications.

Congress calls upon the General Council to:

i. voice concern over the impact on training standards and patient safety of new initiatives such as medical internships and apprenticeships;

ii. lobby for rigorous workforce planning to be undertaken to provide training places for the new cohort of medical students and retain senior doctors to train them.


C17 Education in the UK 

Received from: Community, NAHT

Motion 58 and amendments and 59 and amendment

Congress is dismayed by the government’s failure to value publicly funded education, the steeply declining status in parts of the UK and the insufficiency of UK-wide investment. Over 13 years of Conservative rule education has lurched from one funding crisis to another; and one Education Secretary to the next. The abject failure to invest in the school workforce and estate has resulted in the worst recruitment and retention crisis, at all levels in the profession, since the 1944 Education Act. The lack of an overarching commitment and vision for high quality 21st century public education is having an increasingly detriment impact on pupils, schools and the communities they serve, blighting the life chances of children, particularly those from working class communities.

Congress notes with sadness the complete lack of energy, enthusiasm and dynamism from a government that appears to have run out of ideas.

Congress recognises that staff retention and recruitment is a particular challenge for the education and school sector. Congress notes the latest workforce survey by the Department for Education showing that 40,000 teachers resigned from state schools last year – almost 9 per cent of the teaching workforce, and the highest number since it began publishing the data in 2011.

Congress recognises that reducing the overall workload pressures on teaching staff, allowing them more time to focus on teaching and less time on administrative and other tasks, is a crucial to redressing the retention issue presently faced.

Congress also notes the results of the government’s own ‘Working Lives of Teachers and Leaders’ survey, showing that:

i. the most cited reason for considering leaving were high workload (92 per cent) and government initiatives or policy changes (76 per cent)

ii. more than half of all teachers thought their workload was unacceptable and they did not have sufficient control over it

iii. two-thirds of teachers report spending more than half of their working time on tasks other than teaching (rising to 77 per cent for secondary school teachers).

iv Congress calls all political parties to once again make education central to their manifesto commitment in the run up to the next general election.

Congress congratulates education unions for their joint work and solidarity which has already won additional pay and funding from government and commits further support in their continuing campaign for restoration of pay.

Congress calls on the TUC to:

a. lobby government to publish the full results of their ‘Working Lives of Teachers and Leaders’ survey

b. work in partnership with teachers and unions to develop policy solutions for the specific problem of workload pressures, such as facilitating an increase to PPA (planning, preparation and assessment) time and greater levels of flexibility around PPA work. 

c. support industrial action and campaigning by affiliates to secure a national contractual limit on the working time of teachers and headteachers in schools and colleges.

Mover: NAHT
Seconder: Community
Supporter: NEU, NASUWT, EIS


C18 Education support services

Received from: AEP, NAHT

Motion 60 and amendment and 61

Congress is concerned about the impact on children of austerity, the pandemic and cost of living crisis. The public services that support children have been eroded, as has the pay of the people who work in them. Cuts to local authorities, schools, NHS and other agencies mean that too often, the services children need are not there. The SEND (special educational needs and disability) system in England remains in crisis.

The failure to properly cost and then fund major reforms introduced by the government in 2014 has created a system that is failing pupils, families and schools. Current levels of funding remain wholly inadequate and local authorities simply don’t have the resources to meet the demands being placed on the system – as a result many continue to carry large budget deficits. The unavoidable consequence of this is that too many schools are struggling to meet the needs of pupils with SEND, through no fault of their own. The government’s recent SEND action plan contains some good ideas but is unlikely to address the root causes of the problem and, crucially, does not bring an extra penny in funding.

Congress recognises that support staff cuts are denying children educational opportunities. Congress recognises that this particularly impacts the most vulnerable children, such as those living in poverty, with special educational needs, or needing mental health support. Congress notes the important role of Educational Psychologists (EPs) in supporting children, the recruitment and retention crisis in the profession, and the way this stems from the combination of underfunded services, workload pressures, and real terms cuts to pay. Congress supports the AEP’s call for fair pay as essential to protecting and rebuilding services.

Congress calls all political parties to value the role of support staff in delivering an inclusive education and commit to a needs-led approach to inclusion, reasonable adjustments, and the full provision of SEND funding so that every pupil has the level of support they require, including in-classroom teaching assistant support, for more emphasis on and resources for early intervention and prevention support for children across the UK, including expanded access to specialists like EPs.

Furthermore, Congress calls on all parties to re-build the crucial support services that support children and families with SEND. Schools cannot do this work alone.

Mover: NAHT
Seconder: AEP
Supporter: GMB

Motion 31 Equal work, voice, pay

Received from: Unite

Congress is clear that workers have not caused the cost of living crisis and we will not allow them to pay for it through attacks to their wages, job security, public services and benefits.

The current economic model is broken and we must prevent profiteering and reshape the economy to the benefit of workers and communities.

Further, Congress is extremely concerned that yet again we see a disproportionate impact on women, Black and Asian ethnic minorities, disabled, LGBT+ and young workers when austerity hits.

We need to ensure that equalities issues are not just the subject of good policies but part of any collective bargaining agenda that delivers concrete results and good agreements dealing with priority issues for women, BME, LGBT+ and young and disabled workers. The role of union equality rep is essential to delivering this strategy; working alongside stewards and having a seat at the negotiating table. Congress is committed to equal work, voice, pay and calls on the TUC General Council with all TUC affiliates, the TUC Women’s, Race Relations, Disabled Workers, and LGBT+ Committees, and Young Members Forum to:

i. conduct an audit to establish the number of union equality reps across affiliates

ii. compile a list of companies who voluntarily recognise the role of union equality reps

iii. support affiliates establishing an organising strategy to gain recognition for union equality reps

iv. join a wider campaign to lobby the government for the introduction of statutory rights for training and paid time off for union equality reps.


C12 Tackling violence, harassment, and sexual harassment in all workplaces

Received from: CSP, EIS

Motions 32, 33, 34 plus amendment and 35

Violence against women and girls is a human rights violation, affecting one in three globally. It is a crisis driven by misogyny and women’s inequalities.

Women and girls face many forms of abuse, including domestic abuse, female genital mutilation and sexual exploitation. Progress falls severely short of where society needs to be.

Congress adopts the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) definition of work-related violence:

“Any incident in which a person is abused, threatened or assaulted in circumstances relating to their work.”

This definition includes:

i. verbal abuse or threats, including face-to-face, online and via telephone

ii. physical attacks.

The latest ONS figures for violence at work recorded 688,000 incidences in one year.

Within the workplace, violence is an intersectional issue.  In healthcare, Black women, younger and older women, women with a minority sexual orientation and women with other protected characteristics experience workplace violence at a disproportionately higher rate.

Surveys have consistently shown that LGBT people face high rates of abuse, harassment and exclusion. A Stonewall survey reported that 10 per cent of BAME LGBT people responded that they had been attacked compared to 3 per cent of white LGBT people. A TUC survey found that around 7 in 10 LGBT workers experienced sexual harassment at work.

A separate TUC report highlighted that over 70 per cent of BME workers have experienced racial harassment at work in the last five years.

The most common form of gender-based violence at work is sexual harassment. The impact includes sexual harassment by third parties like patients, customers and students. UCU research found 14 per cent of tertiary education staff who had experienced sexual harassment had been harassed by a student.

We are extremely concerned about the decision to separate domestic abuse from the government’s 2021 Violence Against Women and Girls strategy – this displays a lack of understanding that the two are connected and could prevent women from receiving specialist help.

We have to challenge ourselves. Conference notes that the TUC Women’s Conferences in 2022 and 2023 passed motions about the experience of trade union staff, members and reps who suffer structural sexism, and sexual harassment, assault and bullying in our own movement.

Since then, many reports carried out within the movement have exposed abuse and power hoarding and showed the profound need for cultural change. These behaviours mirror society in general, and are not restricted to any one union – an indictment of our democracy and ability to champion equality, protect our members and effect change for good.

Women now make up a majority of trade union members but this is not reflected in many of our leaderships at national and local level. The track record has also undermined our collective credibility. We have to be brave and honest enough to say we have not been doing enough and we have to expect more of ourselves as well as employers.

In partnership with experts in preventing sexual violence the TUC should lead the way by encouraging affiliates to:

  • affiliate to the ‘White Ribbon’ campaign.
  • prioritise reviewing and improving our activities and behaviours so they reflect safe, secure and empowering spaces for all members and for fringe events at relevant conferences and events to hear from survivors of abuse within the movement.
  • provide sexual harassment training for representatives and leaders members and staff to reflect on our own behaviours, attitudes and approaches and support delivery of bystander training programmes for representatives.
  • no longer use gagging clauses to silence staff on sexual harassment
  • sign-post their organisational policies on harassment (in all its forms) and provide support for people coming forward if they have been subjected to predatory behaviour within the movement.

Recognising the need for a worker-led solution to violence in the workplace, Congress calls on the TUC to extend its Leadership Programmes for LGBT+ and disabled workers and to include new programmes for women, younger and older workers.

Gender power relations and their intersectionality with other factors, such as age, ethnicity and the nature of the job, are associated with the violence experienced by female workers.

The scale and impact of the problem cannot be under-estimated. The British Medical Journal reports 35,606 sexual safety incidents recorded across the NHS between 2017 and 2022. 91 per cent of female doctors reported sexism in their workplace. Yet only one NHS Trust in England reported providing dedicated training in preventing sexual harassment.

Congress condemns the risks of violence faced by all workers at their workplaces, especially LGBT, BME and female workers.

Unions have achieved many successes of which we should rightly be proud. However, one area where unions have not been making enough of a difference is reducing sexual violence in workplaces. This should now be a genuine priority across our movement.

Congress instructs General Council to write a report on work-related violence.

The report should include:

  • identifying the prevalence of workplace violence by gender, and in relation to BME and LGBT+ workers
  • recommendations to workers and employers
  • recommendations to the UK government and devolved administrations

Congress calls on the TUC to campaign for the government to:

  • ensure sustainable support for victims of abuse, and ring-fenced funding for BME, disabled, older and LGBTQIA+ survivors
  • implement a duty to fund and provide safe accommodation for those experiencing abuse, including migrant women
  • ensure sustainable funding to invest in perpetrator interventions and specific funding for working with young men and boys
  • meet all commitments necessitated by ratification of ILO Convention 190.
  • the introduction of a new duty for employers to prevent harassment by third parties.

Mover: EIS
Seconder: CSP
Supporters:  SOR, TSSA, UCU

Motion 36 More work needed to tackle and prevent sexual harassment in our movement and in the workplace

Received from: TUC Women's Conference

In recent years, the scale and extent of sexual harassment has been thrown into  sharp focus.

Congress recognises the excellent work carried out the TUC to tackle sexual harassment in the workplace and beyond, including the 2016 report Still Just a Bit of Banter. The TUC’s own research exposed just how persistent and widespread sexual harassment is in the workplace and the role of misogyny and sexism in enabling it.

In doing so, Congress recognises that the eradication sexual harassment in society and workplaces must include trade unions, both as democratic membership bodies and as employers. Congress congratulates the TUC on their work in this area supporting and encouraging affiliates to develop internal and member facing policies and practices.

Congress recognises that unions are crucial to defending women’s rights and acknowledges the vital role reps play in encouraging women to report harassment; ensuring appropriate action is taken when women do speak out; and campaigning on the issue in the workplace.

In March 2021, the TUC established an executive working group to examine how we can work together to ensure that we have our own house in order and to provide the tools to make positive change.

Congress welcomes the Congress report on tackling and preventing sexual harassment, This report outlines the progress made by the working group and sets out a number of recommendations.

Congress therefore commends the action by the TUC Executive Committee sexual harassment working group in:

i. conducting a survey of unions about the work being done to tackle and prevent sexual harassment for members and as employers for their staff

ii. sharing legal advice and resources

iii. developing opportunities for training for the senior leadership within our movement

iv. launching a pilot training programme.

In response to the survey, nearly half of affiliates said they were already developing or progressing a programme of work to tackle, respond to and prevent sexual harassment and the majority said their planned or ongoing work sought to include employees, members, paid officials, lay representatives and governing structures

Sexual harassment is still a major problem and although good work has been done to highlight issues and in providing education and training, more is needed.

It is essential that we continue working to achieve a zero-tolerance approach to sexual harassment in all workplaces and to build cultures and practices that prevent sexual harassment.

Congress calls on the TUC to ensure that the working group continues this vital work and in doing so:

a. support the work affiliates are doing with employers to address sexual harassment;

b. encourage unions to examine their own internal policies and procedures to ensure they are equipped to prevent and respond to sexual harassment within their organisations; and

c. explore the possibility of tabling sexual harassment as a standing agenda item at meetings of the TUC General and Executive Councils, to reflect the role leadership can play in tackling and preventing it.

d. press government for the implementation of a preventative duty and a statutory code of practice.

e. implements the recommendations of the 2022 report

f. monitors the progress of affiliates in addressing sexual harassment

g. recognises that sexual harassment is intersectional

h. reports on progress to the 2024 Women’s Conference

i. provides adequate resource to properly facilitate the continued work of the group

j. to conduct a follow up survey of unions in mid-2023 to monitor progress and to determine priorities for further action.

TUC Women’s Conference

C03 Steel and national security

Received from: Community, Unite

Motion 11 and amendments

Congress notes reports from the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) highlighting that the lack of domestic access to steel production and the increasing reliance on foreign imports presents a risk to UK national and economic security; and poses a threat to our defence industry, being harder to produce weapons and equipment for our armed forces.

Congress also notes that as an Island Nation, a lack of domestic steel would pose risks to the nation’s ability to build and repair naval and commercial ships in the UK and thus to maintain vital supply lines of food and essential goods in the event of geopolitical instability.

Congress recognises without government support to reverse the trend of decline; the UK would become the biggest economy worldwide to have no significant domestic steelmaking capacity. Government action which prevents further loss of capacity, supporting modernisation and sustainability, would reduce risk to UK security.

Congress further recognises this support would benefit from being part of a transparent strategic framework that sets a clear and ambitious long-term direction for the sector as the foundation of crucial UK supply chains.

Congress calls on the TUC to:

1. Campaign for the government to recognise the vital national importance of retaining a strong and sustainable domestic steel industry, both for our economic and national security, and the need to provide decisive support that will enable us to compete on a level playing field with our EU competitors.

2. Campaign to change government procurement rules so every major British infrastructure project is legally committing to using domestic steel supplies, and ensure public procurement contracts are tied to jobs and wage guarantees. This would protect and create thousands of steelworker jobs while generating billions for the economy.

3. Lobby government to outline a strategic plan of support, addressing the most pressing challenges facing UK steel – including the transition toward sustainable steel, recognising the importance of keeping open all green steelmaking technology solutions, and fair energy pricing and protection from dirty steel imports – whilst also providing greater certainty on the industry’s future, improving market conditions for inward investment.

Mover: Community
Seconder: Unite the Union
Supporter: Nautilus


C04 Invest in better public transport, solidarity with transport workers 

Received from: ASLEF, RMT

Motion 12 with amendments, and 13

Congress condemns the Government’s chaotic mismanagement of public transport in Britain, which is damaging our economy and our ability to meet our carbon emission reduction targets.

There could be no better example of the Government’s destructive policies than their approach to the Railways and London Underground disputes where the rail minister has admitted the cost of settling the rail disputes would have been less than the billions lost from the cost of the disputes to the economy and from the bankrolling of private train companies.

Congress was disappointed but unsurprised when the DfT delayed plans to complete the Birmingham to Crewe leg of HS2 along with the work to connect it to London Euston. These delays have led to job losses for those working on the construction and will cost the taxpayer more than completing HS2 as previously planned.

A further delay to a much-needed new high speed line which will unlock capacity on the West Coast Mainline, improve passenger services in the North of England and additionally enable rail freight to grow. The delay is a failure of yet another Conservative Government to properly invest in our rail network.

Low wages, fatigue, attacks on workers’ terms and conditions and lack of support for buses by the Government has led to a national shortage of bus drivers.

Lack of appropriate funding has been further evidenced by Network Rail’s plans for spending in 2024-2029, which is insufficient to renew core assets meaning that Network Rail is already planning speed restrictions to enable the safe operation of trains on aging infrastructure.

This underinvestment is occurring during a climate emergency where a properly funded rail network, alongside investment in electrification, is needed to help avert catastrophe.

Congress is appalled that mismanagement has been driven by the Government’s transport austerity and reforms that will make our railways less accessible and available to millions, including fewer services, the de-staffing of trains and stations, loss of engineering skills, and the closure or nearly all rail ticket offices in England.

Congress commends our magnificent rail and tube workers who have repeatedly smashed anti-union ballot thresholds and taken action over the last year and beyond to defend public transport.

Congress believes that as well as providing continuing solidarity one of the biggest tributes we can pay to their struggle is to effectively campaign to achieve,

  • An integrated, accessible, publicly owned and accountable rail, bus and ferry network
  • A massive growth in public transport use, delivered by a huge increase in funding, such as outlined in the TUC / transport unions commissioned report “Public Transport fit for the climate emergency.”
  • Ending the damaging outsourcing of vital public transport functions, such as rail cleaning, maintenance and engineering.
  • A just transition with full worker participation to a sustainable transport system based on secure jobs, good wages and decent working conditions
  • A massive investment in a skilled transport workforce for a just transition and decarbonisation as part of a National Climate Service.
  • Electrifying all of the rail network.

Congress calls on the General Council to:

1. Lobby the Government to complete the original scope of HS2 in full;

2. Lobby the Government for the investment needed by Network Rail to be able to renew and maintain core assets to keep our rail network safe and reliable;

3. Champion public transport and rail freight when highlighting how to tackle the climate emergency;

4. Continue to support ASLEF’s ‘Invest in Rail’ and ‘Rail Electrification’ campaigns.

Mover: RMT
Seconder: ASLEF
Supporters: Unite and TSSA

Motion 14 Closure of ticket offices

Received from: TUC Disabled Workers Conference

This conference agrees to stand with the RMT who is opposing plans by the government and train companies to close nearly one thousand ticket offices across the rail network.

We believe that ticket offices and station staffing must be protected in order to maintain passenger service, safety, security and accessibility.

These plans are not about improving the passenger experience, but rather cutting jobs and protecting the profits of the train companies.

We know that closing ticket offices will worsen the passenger experience, safety, security and accessibility. The impacts will be particularly severe for disabled people, elderly passengers and those requiring additional support.

Elderly and disabled people, and people on low incomes are less likely to have access to the internet and are excluded by the push to online and electronic ticketing.

One of the key concerns is that station ticket machines are often not accessible to disabled people, who may also not be able to track down a “roving” member of staff if they need assistance.

We ask the TUC to encourage all trade union members to take part in the consultation process and work with the RMT on their campaign to stop this attack on our safety and accessibility.

Disabled Workers Conference

Motion 15 Tackling flags of convenience and growing domestic shipping

Received from: Nautilus

Congress commends the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF) on the 75th anniversary of the campaign against Flags of Convenience (FOC) in shipping.

Congress condemns continuing proliferation of FOCs, which drive down wages and on-board conditions, induce fatigue, and stress through excessive hours of work with minimal rest. FOCs also lead to increased ‘social dumping,’ with exploited labour from developing countries undermining jobs, pay and conditions for UK resident maritime professionals as highlighted by P&O Ferries unlawfully sacking 786 seafarers in March 2022.

Therefore, Congress calls on the government to instigate a global review of ship registration practices whilst reinforcing Article 91 of UNCLOS (United Nations Convention on the Laws of the Sea) that requires a genuine link between the shipowner and the country of registration. The review should include defining the requirement for a genuine link with the aim of ensuring states effectively exercise jurisdiction and control of vessels on its register in accordance with Article 94 of UNCLOS.

Congress further notes that 80 per cent of the world’s maritime states have laws protecting local shipping industries, ensuring the retention of skilled
maritime workers and the preservation of maritime knowledge and technology; safeguarding fair competition; promoting safety; and bolstering national security. The UK is in the minority of countries without these set of ‘cabotage’ laws.

Therefore, Congress calls on the government to enact laws with the clear aim of protecting domestic shipping industries and inland waterways, growing the UK flag, and increasing employment and training opportunities for domestic maritime professionals.

Nautilus International


› In point (i), after ‘vessels’ and before ‘on’, insert “and employment standards.”
› Insert new final para,
“Congress believes the government’s voluntary seafarers charter introduced in response
to P&O must be mandatory. Congress will campaign for a stronger mandatory charter, fair pay agreements on ferries and improvements to seafarer employment legislation, including these reforms being introduced in the first year of a Labour government.”
National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers

C05 A tipping point in the climate emergency – we need to act now 

Received from: Prospect, Unison

Motion 16 and amendments

Congress reaffirms that the climate emergency is real and that time is running out to achieve the necessary changes required to get to Net Zero by 2050. Climate justice cannot be separated from social justice.  It is the most marginalised communities whose health suffers most from climate change, pollution and loss of nature.

June 2023 may be remembered as the start of a big change in the climate system, amid signs that some systems are tipping toward a new state from which they may not recover.

Congress notes the Met Office ‘State of UK Climate’ report, which confirms that 2022 was a record-breaking year for weather and a sign of the UK’s changing climate.

Congress commends workers’ emergency responses to climate and extreme weather events such as wildfires, floods, droughts and heat waves.

Congress 2022 supported funding our public services to tackle climate change but the challenge is broader.  Governments need to do more and workers need to be at the table.

Congress recognises that climate change affects all workers as citizens but it is also having an increasing adverse effect in our workplaces.  The impacts are being felt everywhere and go way beyond the increased health impacts of extreme weather events such as heat and floods.

Yet our climate and environmental workforce is under paid and over-worked. Essential expertise is being lost from under-funded public services.

Conference welcomes the work the TUC has done and calls on the General Council to:

1. coordinate and support unions furthering this work both nationally and globally, working alongside the ETUC, ITUC and civil society organisations;

2. lobby UK government to recommit to their climate commitments and to introduce a Just Transition Commission with dedicated ministerial oversight and representatives from all stakeholders including unions;

3. Press for increased investment in the climate and environmental workforce;

4. work with STUC, WTUC and other union partners to adapt their existing bargaining guides for reps to become UK wide resources;

5. continue lobbying employers and governments for facility time for green reps;

6. hold a green reps seminar in 2024;

7. support mobilisations in Big Green Week and at COP28.

Seconder: Prospect
Supporters: CSP, FBU

Motion 17 Charting a just transition for maritime professionals

Received from: Nautilus

Congress believes that the transition to a net-zero carbon future must be a ‘just transition’ that not only tackles emerging environmental issues but also confronts systemic injustices within the world of work.

Congress believes the transition must be ambitious, timely, democratic, safe, equitable, diverse, funded, and thus “just.” It must future proof skills and training for workers, secure workplace safety and protect and enhance pay and working conditions.

Congress understands that in shipping industry achieving net-zero by 2050 will require innovative technologies and the use of alternative fuels, having significant impact on those working in the industry.

Therefore, Congress calls on:

i. the government to future proof skills and training of maritime professionals by ensuring skills and training are fully accessible and fully funded

ii. employers to secure safety at sea through consultation with trade unions in the procurement and design of new vessels.

iii. the government to work with other member states at the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) for regulations for the implementation and use of alternative fuels

iv. the government to establish a financial safety fund, to support those who cannot make the transition, like the ‘Kolenfonds’ in the Netherlands

v. employers working in offshore renewable energy to engage in collective bargaining processes with trade unions

vi. government to prioritise offshore renewable energy contracts to shipowners utilising the UK Ship register.

Nautilus International

Motion 18 Unplug the profiteers – the case for public democratic ownership of energy

Received from: Unite

Congress notes the UK is in the grip of a profiteering epidemic. ‘Greedflation’ fuels the cost-of-living crisis, not workers’ wages.

Congress also notes that energy has been one of the most egregious examples of profiteering in the economy. Multinational corporations and shareholders are making billions while communities are left out in the cold and energy costs push industries to the brink.

The “Big 4” energy providers posted combined profits of £9.5bn, up 84 per cent. Distribution and transmission monopolies have posted combined profits of £6.3bn, with higher profit margins than any other sector in the UK economy.

Public, democratic ownership of the entire energy network can end profiteering, make energy affordable for all, and create new jobs in a sustainable industry.

Unite Investigates has exposed that the profit margins of the UK’s largest companies soared 89 per cent since the pandemic and revealed the cost of nationalisation of energy is equal to just two years of company profits at current levels.

Public ownership of energy could have saved the UK nearly £45bn in 2022, over £1,800 per household.

Congress resolves to:

i. recommit to a strategy of defending and extending collective bargaining as the primary way workers can challenge profiteering and economic inequality for ourselves

ii. oppose any return to austerity, a false choice which makes our public sector pay the price for a failing economy

iii. support full public, democratic ownership of the energy network in the interests of workers and our communities.



› In point (i.) after ‘for ourselves,’ insert:
“including fair pay agreements being introduced through sectoral collective bargaining across the economy as soon as possible in Labour’s first term.”
› At end of motion insert:
“iv. use sectoral collective bargaining and public ownership to assist just transition in the offshore
energy sector guaranteeing retraining and unionised jobs on equivalent terms and conditions.”
National Union of Rail. Maritime and Transport Workers

Motion 01 Trade union and employment rights

Received from: Unite

Congress condemns the renewed attack on trade union rights including proposals to undermine industrial action in the Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill and calls for the repeal of all anti-union laws.

Congress also condemns the fact that trade union rights could also be undermined by other legislation such as the Public Order Bill and the Retained EU Law Bill.

Congress believes that attacks on trade union rights and on employment rights more widely further demonstrates the case for the devolution of employment law.

Congress notes that the House of Lords voted to exclude Scotland from the Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) legislation, but this was overturned by the Tory majority in the House of Commons.

Congress also notes the letter to the UK parliamentary under secretary of state from the Scottish Government cabinet secretary for well-being economy, fair work and energy reiterating opposition to the Bill and calling for its abandonment.

Congress further notes that devolution of employment law is the policy of the Labour Party in Scotland and supported by the current Scottish Parliament.

Congress calls upon the General Council to oppose any new anti-trade union legislation and campaign for the:

i. repeal of all current anti-trade union legislation

ii. devolution of employment law to Scotland

iii. Labour government (if elected in the next two years) to repeal all anti-trade union laws within 12 months of gaining office

iv. introduction of a bill of rights providing positive employment and trade union rights – including strong rights to collectively bargain and to take strike action.



› At the end of paragraph 2, insert the additional sentence:
“Workers in many transnational and globalised industries are also denied meaningful rights to organise disputes or demonstrate solidarity internationally.”


C01 Campaign against the Minimum Service Levels (MSLs) legislation

Received from: NASUWT, RMT

Motion 2 and amendments, motion 3 and amendment and motion 4

Conference asserts that anti-trade union restrictions represent a direct attack on workers’ rights to fair pay, decent jobs and good terms and conditions.

Congress decries the fact that trade unions are subjected to draconian legislation that severely impacts on workers’ ability to organise and defend their rights at work.

Congress is concerned that increasing use of insecure, intermittent and precarious employment relationships has resulted in widespread job insecurity and denies workers access to basic employment rights, many of which are at serious risk of being further eroded.

Congress notes that not content with their complete betrayal of workers following the P&O scandal the Tory Government’s Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill now represents the biggest attack on trade union rights and values since the Taff Vale judgement against the Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants, which ruled unions could be sued and compelled to pay for damages for the impact of their strike action. Congress condemns the MSLs legislation.

The new Bill compels unions to instruct members to comply with work notices to cross picket lines. Members not complying can be dismissed and unions not complying lose their immunity from prosecution.

Congress notes the Bill gives the government sweeping powers to extend minimum service levels across the economy, curtailing the ability of every trade union to protect their members during the ongoing cost of living crisis and beyond.

Conference notes that in June, a tripartite ILO Committee told the Government to bring the Strikes law and other labour law into line with the UK’s obligations, consulting with social partners, and to report back by 1 September 2023.

Congress welcomes Humza Yousaf’s pledge to the STUC congress that the Scottish Government “will never issue or enforce a single work notice” under the legislation.

Congress agrees that we have no choice but to build mass opposition to the MSLs laws, up to and including a strategy of non-compliance and non-cooperation to make them unworkable, including industrial action.

Congress congratulates the unions and the TUC who took the UK Government to court and defeated new laws that allowed employers to use agency workers to break strikes. Congress agrees with the High Court that the Government acted unfairly, unlawfully, and irrationally. Unions will always act to safeguard workers’ rights.

Congress calls on the next Labour government to immediately repeal MSLs, the Trade Union Act 2016 and take urgent steps to remove other anti-union laws.

Congress pledges 100% solidarity with any trade unions attacked under these MSL laws.

Congress agrees we must use all means necessary to defeat the unjust MSLs laws and calls on the General Council to proactively seek to:

  • resist any further restrictive trade union legislation and demand:
    • the repeal of the Trade Union Act 2016 and all other anti-trade union legislation;
    • stronger rights for unions to access workplaces, win recognition, and establish collective bargaining rights; and
    • the right for trade union members to vote online during industrial action ballots, and statutory elections for executive committees and general secretaries.
  • build coalitions to campaign for non-compliance and against further restrictive trade union legislation;
  • build an appropriate industrial response to defend workers’ right to strike;
  • implement a campaign alongside others defending the fundamental rights of working people to resist MSLs;
  • legally challenge the Minimum Service Levels (MSLs) legislation;
  • coordinate demands from affiliates and call on employers, devolved governments, mayors, fire authorities, local authorities and other public bodies to refuse to implement the MSLs legislation and issue work notices and work with the trade union movement to render MSLs inoperable;
  • support demonstrations and hold a national march opposing the legislation and calling for repeal of the anti-union laws;
  • mobilise support for any affiliate seeking assistance, whose union and members are sanctioned for non-compliance;
  • organise a Special Congress, size to be determined, to explore options for non-compliance and resistance.

Seconder: RMT
Supporters: FBU, UNISON, NEU, BDA

Motion 05 Stop employer intimidation and defend the right to strike

Received from: UCU

Congress notes the right, articulated under Article 11 of the European Convention on Human Rights and the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992, to join a union and participate in industrial action.

Congress condemns the actions of university employers making punitive deductions to UCU members’ salaries (up to 100 per cent of salary) for participating in lawful action short of strike action (including a marking and assessment boycott) in furtherance of their campaign to improve pay and conditions. Congress also condemns other employers using similarly draconian measures elsewhere to attempt to intimidate workers into not taking industrial action.

Congress believes this is part of a co-ordinated attack by employers, supported by the Conservative government, on the right of working people to advance their interests through industrial means.

Congress believes these attacks are designed to intimidate workers, especially those who are low-paid, casualised, women, disabled, alongside Black and migrant workers.
Congress applauds the bravery of UCU members in continuing their action short of strike action despite vindictive pay deductions.

Congress condemns all attacks on trade unionists right to participate in industrial action.

Congress calls on the TUC to lead:

i. an industrial campaign to defend the right to engage in all forms of industrial action

ii. a political campaign to lobby opposition parties to enshrine the right to strike in statute and to repeal all anti trade union laws

iii. a public campaign to defend the right to participate in industrial action.

University and College Union

Motion 06 Tackling one-sided flexibility

Received from: Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers

Congress notes the significant ongoing impact of inflation. According to an Usdaw survey of thousands of low-paid workers in May 2023:

i. 85 per cent of workers feel financially worse off than last year

ii. Nearly three-quarters have struggled to pay energy bills in the last year

iii. 74 per cent reported that financial worries are impacting their mental health.

Congress believes that our weak employment rights framework is at the heart of the cost-of-living crisis. One-sided flexibility, where flexibility benefits the employer at the expense of employees, means it is too easy and too cheap for employers to change shifts or cut hours at short notice. Furthermore, short and zero-hours contracts rob workers of financial certainty. Workers need more security, more predictable working patterns and more hours.

Congress welcomes the Labour Party’s commitment to implementing a new deal for workers, including provisions to tackle one-sided flexibility and insecure work. Congress believes the measures outlined by Labour, including trade union access rights and recognition, introducing a right to a normal hours contract and ensuring workers get reasonable notice of shift changes, will be transformative.

Congress believes this agenda should be a central part of Labour’s next manifesto. Congress resolves for the TUC to:

a. continue to campaign for the development and implementation of a comprehensive new deal for workers

b. establish a working group of affiliates to look at the technical elements of introducing and enforcing the new deal proposals around tackling one-sided flexibility and insecure work

c. work collectively with Labour-affiliated unions to bring these proposals to life.

Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers

Motion 74 Coordinating the trade union movement

Received from: CWU

The past year has seen trade unions and thousands of striking workers take centre stage in the national conversation around the cost-of-living crisis. But workers have come up against well-funded, organised anti-union forces, including the Tory government and union-busting consultancies.

We have seen unacceptable attacks on workers by senior managers who have been paid to break up companies, rather than build them. Gross corporate mismanagement has become the norm and workers have been made to pay the price for profiteering across our economy.

It is clear that employers act in a coordinated fashion and more than ever, the trade union movement needs to act together in fighting back.

Congress believes it is time for unions to have a proper debate about how we can introduce models of trade unionism that can take cooperation, solidarity and the organisation of workers to the next level.

Congress resolves:

i. to complete the TUC review and ensure that democracy is reflected at every level of the TUC

ii. for the TUC General Council to establish and agree a collective bargaining strategy for multiple sectors across the economy, to be published in the next six months

iii. for the TUC to create and endorse trade union-backed media to fight back against the right-wing bias in traditional media and to use this to launch the biggest joint recruitment exercise in recent years

iv. to lobby the Labour Party to adopt the new deal for workers in full on the election of Labour government.

Communication Workers Union

Motion 75 TUC – the next 10 years

Received from: Prospect

Motion received from Prospect

Congress applauds the union members who have taken industrial action to secure decent pay rises during the cost-of-living crisis.

Congress notes that this has increased union visibility across the UK and has led to thousands of working people joining unions for the first time.

However, Congress is concerned that union membership dropped by 200,000 in 2022 and that, across the economy, just one in five workers are union members. Private sector union membership is at crisis point.

Congress believes that much more needs to be done to make trade union membership attractive, accessible and welcoming for all.

We cannot expect others to do it for us.

Greater urgency is needed to secure a vibrant and successful TUC for the next 10 years and beyond.

Consistent with trade union values, the TUC should work with unions to transparently address barriers to union membership and activism and, without preconception, consider practices and behaviours that can be improved, updated, and made more inclusive.

Congress instructs the General Council to consult widely and to develop a programme for action by Spring 2024.


Motion 62 Education: ensuring all political parties put students and staff first for the 2024 general election

Received from: UCU

Congress notes the vital importance of post-16 education in creating a fairer society in the UK, and developing the skilled workforce we need to build a greener future.

Congress condemns the devastating funding cuts in post-16 education since 2010, including the scrapping of the Union Learning Fund, and the tuition fee model in higher and further education which lumbers students with exorbitant debts and requires providers to compete for students.

Congress further condemns the government’s attacks on arts and humanities education; subjects which enrich our cultural life as well as contributing significantly to the UK economy.

Congress notes with concern the falling value of staff pay across post-16 education which, along with rampant casualisation and unsustainable workloads, has caused acute problems with recruitment and retention.

Congress believes that staff working conditions are student learning conditions, and that the market-driven system focussed narrowly on employability and built on debilitating student debt is fundamentally broken.

Congress calls on the TUC to campaign, ahead of the 2024 general election and beyond, for funding and regulatory reform in post-16 education which would:

i. scrap tuition fees and introduce a sustainable funding model which values all students, staff, subjects, and provider types

ii. address problems caused by marketisation and uneven student distribution across providers

iii. tackle education cold spots and widen access to ensure that all students can get the education that best meets their needs and aspirations

iv. improve pay and conditions to ensure that the sectors are able to recruit and retain the skilled staff they need.

University and College Union

Motion 63 Childcare: delivering a just and prosperous society

Received from: Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers

Congress recognises that high quality, accessible, affordable early years childcare is an investment in essential social infrastructure with long-term benefits for the economy and society.

High-quality childcare helps tackle child poverty, support children’s development, removes barriers to employment and creates more well-paid jobs in the sector. Lack of childcare is a barrier to women’s labour market participation and progression and contributes to the gender pay gap.

Save the Children estimate that over half of mothers with children under the age of 11 have had to cut their working hours due to childcare costs and 40 per cent say they or their partner would work more hours if childcare was more available.

Children from low-income families, single parents, LGBT+ families, parents with disabled children and Black families face additional barriers in accessing and affording formal childcare because of the discrimination they face.

Over half of all families rely on grandparents for childcare and Congress recognises the critical role grandparents play in enabling parents to work.

Government must deliver a fully funded, comprehensive childcare system which is easily understood by and supports working parents including:

i. significant increases to maternity and paternity leave and pay

ii. 30 hours of funded childcare per week from the end of parental leave

iii. free breakfast club and after-school provision in every primary school

iv. funded school holiday provisions

v. funding for the free hours hourly rate that reflects the true cost of childcare provision

vi. a legal right to flexible working from day one of the job

vii. restoration of Sure Start.

Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers

Motion 64 Standards in public life

Received from: FDA

Congress recognises that maintaining the highest standards in public life is the bedrock of our democracy, our economic success, our foreign policy, and is crucial to maintaining confidence in our public institutions. Businesses want to invest in a country where governance is stable, predictable and fair.
The seven principles of public life, selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty and leadership, apply equally to parish councillors and Prime ministers. Those who seek to lead and delver public services should do so for the public good, not private gain.

Congress recognises that those principles are facing their greatest challenge since they were first developed over 25 years ago. As the country’s most senior public servant, Boris Johnson resigned as prime minister and MP over his failure to maintain standards. Our current prime minister appointed his deputy, Dominic Raab, despite knowing of complaints of bullying, and allowed him to resign rather than be sacked when found guilty of breaching the ministerial code.

Congress welcomes the Labour Party’s commitment to establish a new ethics and integrity commission which will assume responsibilities over the Ministerial Code and Advisory Committee on Business Appointments.

Congress calls on the general council to engage with the Labour party on their proposals to ensure that:

i. there is a consistent approach to the enforcement of standards across the public sector

ii. independence of regulatory bodies is enhanced, and appointments are made without political interference

iii. investigations, determinations, and punishments are determined, and seen to be determined, independently.


Motion 65 Renewing our fire and rescue service

Received from: FBU

Congress condemns the Tory-led Westminster governments since 2010, which caused terrible damage to our fire and rescue service.

Congress believes that deregulation and austerity over decades contributed to the causes of the Grenfell Tower fire, and that ministers should be held to account.

Congress notes the impacts of 13 years of Tory rule:

i. savage cuts to the fire and rescue service, resulting in the loss of 12,000 firefighters’ jobs

ii. fragmentation of local services and a postcode lottery of response standards

iii. attempts to privatise fire and rescue

iv. exclusion of the FBU from major channels of fire service policymaking

v. real terms pay cuts for firefighters

vi. attacks on collective bargaining and the national joint council.

Congress supports the FBU’s demands:

a. long-term and viable investment in the fire and rescue service

b. national standards of fire and rescue service emergency response

c. a new national statutory structure for fire policy and standards, to include the FBU

d. apply the lessons from the Grenfell Tower disaster

e. ensure dedicated emergency fire controls under fire and rescue service governance

f. a public fire and rescue college to ensure necessary training, research and planning

g. separate governance arrangements for fire and rescue and police services

h. a statutory duty on fire and rescue services to respond to major floods in England, as elsewhere in the UK.

Congress supports the FBU’s autumn campaign of lobbies, rallies and UK-wide action.

Fire Brigades Union

C19 A royal commission into the government failures on the probation service and criminal justice system

Received from: NAPO, POA

Motion 66 with amendment and 67

Congress recognises that in society there needs to be a criminal justice system that is fair, accessible and decent for all the public. Since 2010 the whole criminal justice system has fallen into disrepute whether it be access to legal aid, or a right to a fair trial. Congress also notes that for 13 years there has been major cuts to the Prison service, Policing, and Courts system

Congress is seriously alarmed at the continuing lack of effective investment in the Probation Service since its reunification into state control in 2021.

There is increasing evidence to demonstrate the disastrous impact of this scandalous situation by way of:

  • Unsustainable workloads and unfilled vacancy rates, meaning that it is not uncommon for practitioners to be holding case allocations of anywhere between 101-200% against recognised capacity.
  • Service delivery, as evidenced by the cancellation of specialised programmes for those convicted of sexual offences and a huge backlog of clients awaiting placement on Community Service projects.
  • Public safety, where numerous reports from His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation have been critical of Probation Senior Management for not implementing past lessons and failing to develop systems that will create safe workloads and assist practitioners in protecting our communities to the standards expected.

This threatens the integrity and professionalism of Probation, before the service has been given time to recover from the egregious damage that has been visited upon it by incompetent politicians.

Closures of courts throughout England and Wales has seen a major backlog of trials; Wales has seen a major backlog of trials; cuts to the Prison Service has seen a demise in rehabilitation with overcrowding now the norm and we are still seeing unacceptably high levels of assaults on prison officers and staff across the justice, immigration and custodial sector – with well over seven thousand incidents in the last twelve months.

The above issues, which are the subject of a joint probation unions campaign known as ‘Operation Protect’, are compounded by the proposed One HMPPS’ restructuring programme and its threats to jobs.

Congress seeks public support from the General Council for ‘Operation Protect’, and for the GC to lobby the Official HM Opposition to clearly map out their future plans to restore Probation into a gold standard service within the wider Criminal Justice System.

Congress recognises that there is an urgent need for a root and branch review of the whole criminal justice system from policing to prisons our court system and probation service with emphasis on creating a justice system that is fully funded with improved terms and conditions so that we have a system that is fair, accessible and decent for all.

Conference therefore instructs the general council to campaign for a Royal Commission with all political parties so that these aims and objectives can be met.

Mover: POA
Seconder: NAPO
Supporter: Community

Motion 68 Remove CAFCASS from the Civil Service Pay Remit

Workers in the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (CAFCASS) carry out essential work assisting parties involved in traumatic family breakdowns. Their efforts in public and private law proceedings make a critical difference to parental relationships and the lives of children who are caught in the crossfire of these conflicts.

As an arms-length body within the auspices of the Ministry of Justice, members of Napo and UNISON have seen their real terms pay massively reduced over the tenure of this government. CAFCASS recruits from local authority social work teams whose pay increases have outstripped those of Cafcass staff in recent years. The result has been more staff leaving CAFCASS for other social work roles, which undermines the stability and effectiveness of the organisation.

The fact that CAFCASS can maintain its operations at all in the face of the demands placed upon it, is acknowledged by senior management and is solely down to the fact that most staff members work unrewarded, above and beyond their contracted hours, to support children who face huge upheavals in their experience of family life.

Congress supports the joint union campaign to see CAFCASS removed from the centralised control of the MoJ. The General Council are asked to lobby the Labour Party to clearly commit a future Labour government to remove CAFCASS from the strictures of the Civil Service Pay Remit which is effectively a restraint on our member’s trade.


Motion 37 Equal conditions for female professional footballers

Received from: PFA

The Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) calls on Congress to support its campaign for parity of conditions for our female professional members.

The women’s game in England has seen success at the elite level and a huge growth in participation and support. PFA members have inspired through their actions both on and off the pitch, using their platform to drive positive change.

However, professionals in the women’s game in England do not yet benefit from the same protections and structures which were fought for and won by their male colleagues.

These protections ensure that changes which will impact the contracts, conditions and rights of players in the men’s game cannot simply be imposed. They ensure that players have a seat at the table and a voice on decisions which affect them.

Players in the English women’s game also do not benefit from the types of collective bargaining agreements that are in place in countries such as the United States and Australia. These agreements mean that players, and their unions, do not have to continually fight, issue by issue, for change.

Much progress has been made in the women’s game, but much more still needs to be done. The recommendations in the recent review led by Karen Carney MBE provide an excellent framework for the future and recognise the vital role union representation has in supporting professional players. These recommendations must now be implemented.

Professional Footballers’ Association

› Insert new penultimate paragraph
“This different treatment extends to the design of footwear for female footballers being based on
the structure of the male foot which can lead to injury. Conference welcomes previous calls for more research into the design of sports footwear for female footballers and other sports women.”

Royal College of Podiatry

Motion 38 Ending the hostile environment

Received from: TUC Black Workers Conference

Congress notes with concern that the Windrush Compensation Scheme is ‘not fit for purpose’ given that only 1 per cent of appeals are successful. Figures revealed through a Freedom of Information request showed that out of 3,479 claimant appeals in 2021, only 42 resulted in a settlement.

Congress notes this low appeal success rate is unsurprising given that the Windrush scandal was perpetrated by the Home Office, and by having them run the Compensation Scheme is like marking their own homework. These figures show the need for an inquiry into the scandal and for taking the compensation scheme out of the government’s hands and having it run by an independent body.

Congress therefore calls for:

i. a statutory judge-led public inquiry into how the Windrush scandal came about and the failings of the compensation scheme

ii. the Windrush Compensation Scheme to be run independently of the Home Office

iii. a Windrush Act that will place a duty on public bodies to reduce race disparities in areas such as education, criminal justice, work, health, and community cohesion.

This legislation to also establish a commonwealth community cohesion fund to tackle disparities and rebuild social and economic ties of communities damaged by the Windrush scandal.

TUC Black Workers Conference

Motion 39 Research and guidance for trans young people

Received from: AEP

Congress notes that the trans community is one of the most discriminated against in the UK today. As a result, the welfare of the trans community in the UK is of deep concern.

Congress promotes social justice and inclusion for everyone in society. These are values equally held by educational psychologists (EPs).

EPs support young people and their families to feel safety and belonging in their settings and communities. EPs know that feelings of safety and belonging are vital to an individual’s personal growth. Yet, there is much evidence to suggest that the transgender community faces many barriers to accessing the material and social conditions required to feel a sense of safety and belonging. This is particularly pertinent for trans young people, 84 per cent of whom have deliberately hurt themselves. Two in five have tried to take their own lives (Stonewall, 2019).

Congress calls for robust, bias free research to establish what best supports trans young people to flourish. This should inform published guidance for settings and services working with this vulnerable community.

Congress further notes that similar action is also needed for the non-binary community.

Association of Educational Psychologists

Motion 40 Protect trans and non-binary rights

Received from: TUC LGBT+ Conference

Congress notes:

With deep concern that the UK government prevented the Gender Recognition Reform Bill passed by the Scottish Parliament from going for royal assent, using (for the first time) section 35 of the Scotland Act 1998.

The Scottish Parliament overwhelmingly passed this progressive bill with over 65 per cent of MSPs from all parties supporting it.

The bill would have removed barriers for people to legally change their gender by allowing for self-identification.

In the 25 years since devolution no UK government has taken this step until now.

Congress notes the UK Govt’s statement to restrict trans+ and non-binary people’s ability to have their Gender Recognition certificate recognised in the UK if it has been issued by countries who allow self-identification.

On the 16/1/23 a high court, to challenge the long waiting times experienced by trans+ people seeking help from the NHS, was rejected. Congress believes:

i. people should be supported through transition and self-identification (regardless of medicalised process)
ii. transphobia cannot go unchallenged, and the TUC should challenge it
iii. the TUC has responsibility to trans and non-binary workers to respond strongly to attacks on their rights
iv. LGBT+ people should have rights to live free from discrimination.

This Congress stands in solidarity with all trans+ and non-binary people from the attacks on their being from the UK state.

We condemn the proposals by Kemi Badenoch in February to ‘clarify’ the Equality Act 2010 and amend the current definition of sex, which would remove decades long rights protections from discrimination for trans people. We also condemn the collusion of the EHRC in this. We welcome the letter from Paul Nowak in response making clear the TUC commitment to oppose these proposals.

Congress calls on the TUC:

a. to strengthen solidarity with trans and nonbinary workers in hosting an online event focusing on international progress toward trans and non-binary self- identity, and inclusion within unions and in wider society

b. to support union affiliates in becoming more trans and non-binary inclusive

c. to commend Scottish Parliament for this action and provide vocal support for such change to happen across the whole UK

d. continue to highlight the impact of the onslaught on trans and non-binary people’s lives

e. continue to work alongside the STUC LGBT+ Committee, LGBT+ Labour and other grass roots organisations to support and protect Trans+ and non-binary people’s lives

f. support efforts, as far as practicable, to overturn the Section 35 Order

g. work with appropriate decision makers to prevent the continued erosion of trans+ and non-binary people’s lives.

TUC LGBT+ Conference

Motion 41 Young workers say no to poverty pay!

Received from: TUC Young Workers' Conference

Young workers are some of the lowest paid in the workforce. Often in casual,  junior or apprenticeship positions, they are on the sharp edge of the cost-of-living crisis.

The TUC notes that annual pay growth in the UK has been -0.2 per cent since 2007, and it is one of just 7 out of 33 OECD countries where real pay growth since 2007 is negative.

The TUC attributes this to austerity politics and hard trade union laws, impacting the ability of workers to organise.

The last year has seen a wave of strike action across the trade union movement aimed at safeguarding and improving pay, terms, and conditions for workers. UNISON’s young members have taken part in strike action in the higher education sector and the ambulance service.

Congress believes that young workers should not have to shoulder the burden for economic policies that benefit corporations rather than workers; and that strong unions are the best way to safeguard pay levels for all workers including young workers.

Congress asks the TUC Young Workers Forum to:
i. promote the importance of union membership to young workers to improve pay
ii. share examples of young workers taking part in strike action and organising for better pay
iii. consider producing a guide to industrial action for young workers who may not have taken part in industrial action previously
iv. work with the TUC General Council to campaign against discriminatory minimum wage rates for young workers.

TUC Young Workers Conference

Motion 28 Regulation on corporate profiteering

Received from: BFAWU

Congress notes with concern reports in The Sunday Times on 15 January 2023, suggesting that at a time of an acute cost of living crisis for households with food inflation running at over 14 per cent, UK supermarkets are set to announce higher than anticipated profits.

Further notes that Tesco alone is set to forecast increased operating profits of nearly £2.5bn, significantly above its five-yearly average.

Shares the reported fears of industry insiders that the supermarket giants are benefitting from so-called ‘rocket and feather’ pricing, where prices rise sharply in response to an inflationary spike, only to remain persistently higher than necessary as the rate of inflation falls.

Is scandalised that corporate shareholders should be making excessive profits and more and more households are forced to use foodbanks.

Remains concerned that, despite these rocketing profits, the big retailers in the food and drink sector continue to place undue commercial pressures on their suppliers, leading to a further squeeze on the terms and conditions of workers across the food sector, and more suppliers closing sites or going into administration.

Notes that food workers, like other low-paid groups in society, are disproportionately impacted by the relentless increase in grocery prices.

Congress, therefore, agrees to join the Bakers, Food and Allied Workers union in calling for urgent regulatory action to tackle the plague of excessive corporate profiteering by the UK supermarkets and urges the government to introduce a statutory ‘right to food’ for everyone in our country.

Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union

C13 Artificial intelligence in the workplace

Received from: CWU, MU

Motion 42 and amendment, 43, 44 and amendment and 45 and amendment

This Congress notes the accelerated pace of developments in artificial intelligence (AI) and the range of issues this creates for workers and wider society, and welcomes the work to date by the TUC.

Surveillance technologies and artificial intelligence (AI) are being rapidly expanded and used to exacerbate workplace inequalities, create pressure on staff and in some cases, create an unsafe work environment. Congress believes that if these technologies continue to be introduced in our workplaces without consultation and agreement, they will result in a degradation of pay, terms and conditions and infringe on our basic human rights.

We know that Artificial Intelligence (AI) applications can be very powerful tools in assisting human endeavour. However, they also have the potential to limit the future careers, income and work opportunities of composers, featured artists, session and orchestral musicians, as well as those of other creator and performer groups. This applies not just where it is by intentional design but equally as dangerously through the unconscious bias of developers.

Search-AI and Generative-AI applications could undermine the entire music sector and our culture more widely so it is crucial that the potential impacts are explored and relevant stakeholders consulted before any legislative or licensing solutions are put into law. We know from experience that legislation (including copyright law) does not always keep up with technological change. Global corporations may benefit while individual creators, whose works are exploited, see their rights and income diminish.

Congress notes with concern the proliferation and widespread deployment of generative AI, allowing systems to generate text, images and other media, similar to the training data originally inputted.

This poses clear and immediate issues – including breaches of copyright, threats to jobs and freelance work and the undermining of original content from diverse creators. It risks malign fake news environments creating serious ethical concerns and resulting in the continued decline of public trust in the media. Scraping un-curated content off the internet also serves to embed and reinforce biases.

These issues are vital to all workers, and particular to those in the wider creative industries, risking individual livelihoods and the erosion of a vibrant creative sector in the UK.

The UK finance sector is a key part of the economy. It provides over 1.1 million workers with relatively good quality jobs. The recent advances in Artificial Intelligence poses a threat to many traditional roles in our sector and to workers across the economy. According to McKinsey up to 375 million jobs worldwide will be replaced by automation by 2030 and it’s clear that white collar and administration roles in our sector will be amongst the hardest hit.

Many financial services providers are already using AI to detect fraud and make trading decisions. The predictions around job displacement are frightening, with call centre and customer service roles estimated to drop by 75% as a direct result of AI

Congress notes that AI brings opportunities as well as threats. AI has the capacity to affect humanity profoundly, for good as well as ill, yet its development is driven by private corporations whose work is subject to minimal public oversight.

Congress believes there is also a growing problem in the lack of knowledge and policy surrounding the development of technologies like AI and that the labour movement must improve our resources if we are to confront the inappropriate use of these technologies in the workplace.

Congress believes that the gap in workers’ rights in regards to technology must be addressed and an iron-clad legal right to consultation must be introduced.

Congress acknowledges the excellent work the TUC has already done on AI in the workplace. However, the unprecedented pace in which AI is advancing means that more work is required to prepare organisations and workers for the impact.

Congress resolves to:

a. work with the Labour Party and the Government to ensure that the legal right to consult trade unions on the introduction of new technologies is enshrined in law;

b. lobby to ensure that:

    • any licensing solutions developed to permit the use of human-created musical works to train AI must afford the original human creators, not just the current rights holders, the right to decide whether their creations can be used or not;
    • the original human creators receive a fully fair share in any remuneration should they agree to such use;
    • any such rights should be unwaivable and remain with the creators.

c. lobby for AI regulation nationally and internationally, including an urgent UK Royal Commission

d. put pressure on the Government to:

    • address the lack of state regulation;
    • provide funding to support the reskilling and retraining of workers at risk of being replaced by AI, and to support workers in benefitting from changes to their roles and work-focus through the introduction of this technology;
    • ensure employers introduce safeguarding policies to support employees in the new AI driven workplace.

e. campaign for:

    • significant and long-term investment in skills and retraining, including a fundamental overhaul of the Apprenticeship Levy and recognition of the vital role of trade unions and Union Learning Reps in encouraging workers to take up training opportunities;
    • ethical usage of AI, with consent and appropriate remuneration of creators for their content;
    • information and labelling to be attached/attributed to all “Products” and all Creative work that has been “ made “ or “constructed” by AI

f. campaign against the use of AI in workplaces without explicit collective agreement;

g. deliver safeguards against discrimination;

h. invest in a major research project which identifies the use of and the risks of technology, including tracking and AI, in workplaces across multiple sectors;

i. make the TUC campaign against the unscrupulous use of technology in the workplace a key initiative for 2024;

j. develop and widen the work of the TUC’s AI working group

Mover: CWU
Seconder: Musicians’ union
Supporters: NUJ; Aegis; USDAW; Community; AUE

Motion 19 RPI – save the rate

Received from: GMB

Congress believes the planned abolition of RPI represents an attack on millions of workers and pensioners’ living standards and a permanent deepening of the cost- of-living crisis.

Congress notes that:

i. trade unions have always fought for an inflation measure that reflects working people’s cost of living as a foundation of collective bargaining

ii. the government plans to effectively abolish the RPI rate of inflation from 2030

iii. the Royal Statistical Society has said that alternative CPI/CPIH indices are ‘an unsatisfactory measure of inflation as it affects British households.’

iv. the government’s neglect of RPI since 2010 has raised the cost of borrowing, putting further strain on public services.

Congress condemns:

a. the withdrawal of the RPI link for public sector pay and pensions, which disproportionately lowered the incomes of women, ethnic minority, and disabled workers and pensioners.

b. the suspension of RPI’s routine methodological updates since 2010

c. the Treasury and the UK Statistics Authority’s refusal to hold a full consultation on scrapping RPI.

Congress calls upon the TUC to:

1. establish a priority campaign and working group that brings together interested affiliates and other appropriate organisations through to 2030

2. lobby Labour and the government to preserve an independent RPI, or otherwise create and agree with unions a new rate suitable for collective bargaining

3. create resources that affiliates can use to defend the link

4. hold a conference during the lifetime of the working group to discuss the campaign and the importance of RPI for pay and pensions.


C06 Tax raising measures and fair taxation

Received from: Accord, EIS

Motion 20, and 21 and amendments

Congress proclaims that working people are facing unprecedented pressure on their household incomes as wages continue to lag behind inflation.

This isn’t true for everyone though. CEO pay is up 23 per cent in the last year, bankers’ bonuses are at a record high since the financial crash and dividends are rising three times faster than wages.  Corporate profit margins are at their highest in 70 years, but the UK’s corporate taxes are below the OECD average rate.

In short – wealth is being rewarded, work is not.  What is worse, under our flawed system this expanding wealth is not being taxed fairly.  This must now be addressed.

Of course, a strong and growing economy is a prerequisite for funding decent public services and fairly rewarding our public service workers.  A fair tax system is critical to that too.

The provision of high-quality public services, including welfare support, relies on the fair taxation of people and companies. The UK is taking proportionately less tax than our neighbouring countries and our public services are falling behind as a result.

The latest figures show that the UK’s total tax-to-GDP (of 33%) is lower than the OECD average (34%), well below the EU14 average (39%) and significantly less than that in Scandinavia (41%).

Furthermore, whilst individuals’ taxes are comparable with the OECD average, they are lower than other Western European countries. The UK’s social insurance taxes are also below the OECD average.

Who pays tax, and how much they contribute, are political choices. They have direct impacts for our essential public services and our wider infrastructure. These choices impact directly on fairness and the cost-of-living of working people too.

The money you make from working hard shouldn’t be taxed at a higher rate than the money shareholders and property investors generate from their existing wealth.

Equalising capital gains tax and income tax would generate an extra £10bn into the Treasury, to fund public services and public sector pay.

There are other options to explore as well, including applying a wealth tax, ending inheritance tax loopholes that benefit the already wealthy and implementing a tax on share buybacks.

Congress notes that the Public Accounts Committee said in January 2023 that the UK is missing out on £42bn of unpaid tax because HMRC does not have enough resources including staff.   Whatever shape the tax system takes it can only be delivered through a properly resourced and funded HMRC.

Congress commends the STUC report “Options for increasing taxes in Scotland to fund investment in public services”. Congress calls upon the TUC to develop proposals by Congress 2024 to enable the General Council to lead a debate on reform of our tax system in the UK to deliver fairer outcomes for working people, public services and public sector pay. Congress also calls upon the TUC to lobby the Government and the Labour Party to introduce a fairer system of taxation.

The report should include, but not be limited to proposals for:
• how companies of all sizes could pay a larger and fairer share of taxation;
• how taxation (including social insurance) may be increased in a more progressive manner;
• how Scandinavian and other Western countries configure their taxation and social insurance systems, outlining the benefits to public investments arising from such higher rates of investment;
• an increase in staffing to crack down on tax evasion and close the tax gap;
• a fully resourced cadre of Civil Servants to effectively deliver taxation policy; and
• recommendations on closing tax loopholes at the UK level.

Mover: EIS
Seconder: Accord
Supporters: CWU, PCS, FDA

C07 Secure, affordable housing for all workers

Received from: Equity, NASUWT

Motion 22 and amendments, and 23

Congress asserts that the housing crisis is having a profound impact on living standards and exacerbating the recruitment and retention crisis in critical services including schools, the NHS and social care.

Congress further notes with concern that the shortage of affordable high-quality housing for key workers is impacting adversely on the provision of public services across the board, especially support for the most disadvantaged and vulnerable communities.

Key workers in both the public and private sector undertake an essential role in the functioning of the economy. Congress recognises the need to ensure all key workers, in particular low-paid key workers, can access their work without prohibitive housing or transport costs.

Congress condemns the failure of successive governments and administrations to address the shortage of affordable housing for working people and their families.

Congress agrees that all workers have the right to safe, decent and affordable housing, both while working away and in their wider lives.

Congress notes with concern:

(i) the cost-of-living crisis created by the Government is making decent housing unaffordable for many workers and families;

(ii) unregulated private rents and the lack of affordable social housing are driving the boom in homelessness;

(iii) the increased number of children living in temporary accommodation.

Congress notes the rise of short-term letting platforms and the failure to build sufficient affordable homes has transformed the housing market, including the traditional theatre ‘Digs’ system and driven significant cost increases to both short and long-term rented accommodation. This reduces feasible options for any worker seeking affordable, clean, safe accommodation, and has particularly impacted marginalised groups.

In a survey of nearly 1000 performers and stage management:

  • 56% said their experiences of accommodation would make them less likely to apply for jobs involving working away from home.
  • 71% regularly felt unsafe in their accommodation.
  • 41% said issues with accommodation had a detrimental impact on their mental health.

Congress endorses Equity’s Dignity in digs campaign to:

  • provide touring workers with accommodation that is safe, secure, clean, private and close to the venues they work within;
  • place responsibility for securing appropriate accommodation on the engager;
  • provide proper remuneration for Equity members to cover the additional costs of touring;
  • ·introduce the strongest possible mandatory licensing schemes for short-term accommodation, with ongoing checks on quality and safety.

Congress calls on the General Council to campaign with unions, charities and other bodies for political parties to commit to:

(a) prioritise building more high-quality affordable social housing as a key priority;

(b) prioritise access to affordable housing for all key workers, including teachers;

(c) ensure an adequate supply of reserved housing provision in all local authority areas for key workers;

(d) create and extend discount schemes for rental and first-time buyers in high-cost areas.

(e) Ensure hundreds of thousands of genuinely affordable homes are built in each year of the next decade;

(f) Cap rent increases;

(g) Increase the number of landlord licensing schemes in operation across the UK.

Seconder: Equity
Supporter: USDAW

C11 The Covid-19 public inquiry

Received from: NASUWT, Unison

Motion 30 and amendments

Congress notes the Covid-19 public inquiry hearings, which began in June, have revealed serious failings in the UK government’s preparedness and response to the pandemic and a systematic, long-term failure to address deep structural inequalities in society and systemic labour market discrimination which resulted in poorer households, disabled people and Black people suffering disproportionately – 60 per cent of people who lost their lives to Covid-19 were disabled.

Congress applauds the important evidence that the TUC, with input from affiliates, has submitted to the Inquiry so far. This has demonstrated to the Inquiry that austerity seriously damaged the UK’s resilience. Safe staffing levels, public service capacity and resources, protections for pregnant workers, the social security system and health and safety protections at work were all subjected to funding cuts in the decade before the pandemic. This reduced capacity to respond. Congress agrees that it’s crucial that this evidence is reflected in the Inquiry’s conclusions and recommendations about preparedness for future pandemics (including devolved government experiences).

Congress condemns the government’s failure to prepare for pandemics, despite longstanding warnings in its own national risk register. Congress commends the response of trade unions during the Covid-19 pandemic, by protecting our members, other workers and our communities through collective bargaining and collective action

Congress agrees that the most fitting memorial to all the working people who died during the Covid-19 pandemic would be for the right lessons being learned and acted upon.

Congress agrees that the TUC should continue to:

i. raise the issues of direct relevance to union members, their families and communities

ii. support trade unionists to share their experiences with affiliates, so that these can be built into TUC evidence, and direct to the inquiry through the ‘Every Story Matters’ process

iii. highlight the equalities impact of the pandemic, including the disproportionate impacts of long Covid.

iv. hold decision makers to account.

Moved: Unison
Seconded: NASUWT
Supporters: RCM, FBU

C20 Future of the BBC

Received from: MU, NUJ

Motion 69 and amendment, and 70

The BBC is the single biggest employer of MU members in the UK and is in the unique position of supporting five full-time orchestras. The BBC orchestras alone employ more than 400 contract musicians and many hundreds more on a freelance basis. The BBC also employs and supports musicians and other performers working in all genres through its radio and television programming. The BBC is also an essential source of voice work, including through radio dramas, to many performers and audio artists. Providing vital income to highly-trained but precarious workers who are too often struggling to maintain a living from the industry. 

The freezing of the licence fee and the reduction in BBC income over the past ten years has led to proposals to make job cuts in the BBC Singers, the BBC Orchestras and BBC Introducing as well as local news and programmes. It has also put salaried jobs at risk.

One of the most important elements of universality for the BBC is the fact that it ensures that arts and culture are available to everyone. It is essential that the BBC continues to be able to provide this access to a wide range of culture that the market may not provide for and which may not be viable on purely commercial terms.

This Congress notes a general election is expected in 2024.

Congress believes that accurate reporting and access to reliable information is vital for voters to make informed decisions. Public Service Broadcasting (PSB) plays a crucial role in providing unbiased news reports, scrutinising political parties’ claims, and holding politicians to account.

Congress notes there has been a proliferation of dis-and misinformation in recent years, including on social media, which has impacted voters’ views and judgement.

Congress further notes a YouGov survey (May 2023) which found that PSB broadcasters have the highest net trust ratings of all media outlets, including BBC, Channel 4 and ITV. Of these, the organisation that the largest number of people trust is the BBC.

BBC local radio reaches audiences other media do not. Yet, BBC management want to cut local output across 39 local stations by up to 50%, cutting journalists’ jobs and drastically reducing coverage of local issues. This will adversely impact listeners, including many elderly, disabled and digitally disadvantaged people.

Congress condemns cuts to BBC Local and calls for the corporation to rethink its plans to make output less local, especially given the upcoming general election.

Congress instructs the General Council to:

  • Support the BBC licence fee model and lobby for adequate funding for the BBC in order to secure its future and sustainable jobs for those who work for it.
  • Lobby for the Media Bill to be used as an opportunity to strengthen PSB in every respect, including ringfencing funding for local output;
  • Campaign for professional journalism and impartial reporting to be at the heart of PSB, with the public’s right to know enshrined for future generations.

Mover: Musicians’ union
Seconder: NUJ
Supporter: Equity 

C21 Solidarity with Ukraine

Received from: ASLEF, GMB

Motion 71, 72 and amendment

Congress unequivocally condemns Russia’s illegal, aggressive invasion of Ukraine.

Congress notes:

1. The systematic repression of free trade unions under Putin and Lukashenko, and their suppression in the occupied territories of Ukraine since 2014.

2. Appeals from Ukrainian unions for moral and material aid, including the means of Ukraine’s self-defence.

3. That those who suffer most in times of war are the working class, and that the labour movement must do all it can to prevent conflict; however, that is not always possible.

4. The TUC’s proud history of solidarity with victims of fascist, imperialist aggression including its support for arms to the Spanish Republic. As trade unionists we are inherently anti-imperialistic, and our job is to fight imperialism and tyranny at every opportunity. We recognise that a victory for Putin in Ukraine will be a success for reactionary authoritarian politics across the world.

5. The horrendous human and environmental cost of the Ukraine conflict. Millions of people have been forced to abandon their homes and flee, while many others have lost their lives.

6 The Russian programme of ethnic cleansing.

7. That trade unions across Ukraine have shown true solidarity and support by offering shelter and food to refugees. ASLEF has worked closely with Ukrainian rail unions and seen the tremendous work that they have done to support workers in these times of conflict.

Congress affirms:

a) Its support for civil and labour rights in Russia and Belarus and the immediate release of trade union prisoners.

b) Its belief that there can be no just or enduring peace while the Russian state continues its denial of Ukrainian sovereignty.

c) Its solidarity with the Ukrainian people, including refugees whose sanctuary has been delayed or denied by the UK Government.

d) That re-construction of Ukraine must have labour and union values at its centre.

Congress supports:

i. The immediate withdrawal of Russian forces from all Ukrainian territories occupied since 2014.

ii. Ukrainian unions’ calls for financial and practical aid from the UK to Ukraine.

III. A peaceful end to the conflict that secures the territorial integrity of Ukraine and the support and self-determination of the Ukrainian people.

iv. The full restoration of labour rights in Ukraine and a socially-just reconstruction and re development programme that embeds collective bargaining and rejects deregulation and privatisation.

v. TUC work, and facilitation of affiliates’ engagement, with the main Ukrainian trade union centres (FPU/KVPU), and acknowledges the Ukraine Solidarity Campaign.

Congress therefore instructs the General Council to:

1. Send solidarity to all Ukrainian trade unionists who are fighting for workers’ rights and against imperialism every day.

2. Engage with Ukrainian trade unions from both trade union centres, and a wide range of union members and ideas.

3. Stand with Ukrainian people in the UK and support them in whatever means available until they can safely return home.

Mover: GMB
Seconder: ASLEF
Supporter: NUM

C22 Right to boycott

Received from: National Education Union, Unison

Motion 73 and amendments

The current right-wing Israeli Government, having launched its biggest military incursion in the West Bank in two decades, is announcing new illegal settlements, expelling Palestinians from East Jerusalem and Masafer Yatta, demolishing homes and schools, and failing to prevent armed settlers from rampaging through villages killing and attacking Palestinians, destroying homes and agricultural lands.

The Israeli military has this year killed more than 180 Palestinians.

Congress further notes:

The Government’s Economic Activity of Public Bodies (Overseas Matters) Bill would undermine ethical investment and procurement by public bodies by restricting the consideration of human and workers’ rights, international law and environmental concerns, linked to the behaviour of a foreign state. It damages freedom of speech, local democracy, devolution and pension scheme members’ rights.

The legislation would shield the Israeli government from accountability, alongside companies complicit in its occupation, by legislating to silence those trying to achieve change.

Congress believes:

Any attempt to delegitimise the Palestinian call for Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions and to suggest that Palestinians should be denied the right to appeal to people of conscience for support, must be rejected.

The ability of public authorities, including public sector pension funds, to divest from companies responsible for violations of human rights should be defended.

Such legislation could have blocked the boycott of goods and companies complicit in Apartheid South Africa.

Congress resolves to:

Reaffirm support for Palestinian rights, including our commitment to “boycott the goods of companies who profit from illegal settlements, the Occupation and the construction of the Wall”.

Support the Right to Boycott coalition
Campaign with affiliates against the Bill.

Mover: NEU
Seconder: UNISON 

C02 Time to value arts, heritage and creative industries

Received from: AUE, Prospect

Motions 07 and amendment and 08

Congress recognises that arts and heritage make a huge contribution to the UK economy, attracting millions of visitors each year as well as playing an invaluable role in education and well-being for everyone.

Congress also recognises that public funding for arts and heritage is too often seen as an easy target for cost-cutting. Successive rounds of austerity at national and local levels have cut funding to the bone, resulting in the loss of key community venues. This has been echoed by damaging rhetoric about the value of arts education, and drastic funding cuts to arts courses.

Furthermore, for too long world-class arts and heritage have relied on low pay, insecure and precarious work with no opportunities for career progression. For too many people, working in these sectors is becoming unaffordable.

Congress calls for an end to this regime of second class pay. For the UK to continue to be a leading cultural centre, we must safeguard nationally significant institutions and the highly skilled jobs associated with them. We need a new approach to funding for heritage and the arts.

Congress notes:

  • The importance of the creative arts to the UK economy. (109 Billion contributed to UK economy in 2021).
  • Continuing changes in work patterns and  work and non working time.
  • Ecological change affecting work and non work.
  • The fundamental importance of the Creative Arts. Its importance in both physical and mental health, for those that participate-for people who create, wish to create, and those who enjoy all forms of creative art.
  • TUC policy on lobbying for the provision of community hubs with Art Studios/Rehearsal rooms and teaching spaces rooms.
  • TUC policy on supporting arts education, at all levels. Ensuring equality of opportunity for all disadvantaged groups and proper funding.

Congress calls on the General Council to:

  • Devise a fair and sustainable funding model for arts and heritage and lobby all relevant government bodies for this to be implemented.
  • Lobby present and future governments to:
    • reverse cuts to funding for arts education;
    • develop a coordinated approach to ensure that different areas of government work together to create an overarching Art provision policy for the UK in the 21st century.

Mover: Prospect
Seconder: AUE
Supporter: UCU 

Motion 09 Ending the low pay/no pay culture in arts and creative industries arts and creative industries

Received from: AUE

The systematic underfunding of the arts, cultural and creative industries over the last decade, combined with cuts to arts subjects in the education sector, and on top of the widespread effects of the pandemic and cost of living crisis are having a devastating impact on the culture sector and arts workers, with disproportionate impacts on those who already face discrimination and barriers in the sector including people from working-class backgrounds, Black people, women and disabled workers.

Despite the creative industries being one of the drivers of UK GDP, artists and arts workers are often self-employed (approximately a third of the workforce) and experience with low pay, precarious work and poor terms and conditions. This causes elitism and inequality in the sector. Artists’ Union England is committed to working with the other creative trade unions and the wider trade union movement to change these working conditions.

Congress agrees to campaign for:

i. an increase in public funding for the arts

ii. access to the arts for all

iii. access to a career in the arts

iv. fair and equal pay for arts and culture workers

v. an end to exploitative working conditions

vi. equal access and rights in the sector.

And work with affiliates to ensure that self-employed workers in the creative industries are properly and fairly paid.

Artists’ Union England

Motion 10 Streaming and fair pay for writers

Received from: Writers’ Guild of Great Britain

Congress recognises the global success of subscription video on demand (SVOD) providers such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Disney+, Apple TV+ and subscription audio on demand providers such as Audible. These companies have hundreds of millions of subscribers globally, generating tens of billions of pounds.

However, the writers who create the stories which appear on these platforms are not being adequately remunerated for their work.

SVOD providers regularly engage writers on ‘buy-out’ agreements requiring them to sign away all intellectual property and copyright to their work. Meaning they do not receive any additional remuneration, even if their shows become international hits, and they cannot use their work to create theatre shows, books or audio content based on their creations. This differs from the long-standing collectively bargained agreements the WGGB has in TV, film, audio and theatre, which all contain royalty payments.

Many writers rely on royalty payments to keep afloat when they are not working. The increased use of non-collectively bargained buy-out agreement’s risks writing becoming a profession for only those who can afford it. As a result, the writing profession, and stories that are told will become less diverse

Congress recognises the valuable contribution writers make to the UK economy and cultural and creative sector.
Congress agrees to support the WGGB’s collective bargaining efforts, campaign for fairer pay for writers working for streaming providers and end buy-out agreements.

Congress also notes the recent Writers Guild of America strike against streamers, studios and producers, and sends our solidarity to these workers.

Writers’ Guild of Great Britain

C08  Social security 

Received from: Equity, PCS

Motion 24 and amendment, and 25 

Congress notes that UK benefits fall below the minimum living cost by £140 per month, which covers food, energy and everyday essential items. Millions of people are falling short due to the cost of living crisis and the long-term decline in benefit rates, which are at their lowest in over four decades.

Conference notes that PCS members working in the DWP have experienced chronic understaffing, low pay, unmanageable workloads and creeping privatisation for years. A truly supportive social security system requires a significant increase in staffing and resources to deliver the kind of system the public deserves.

Conference believes the Covid pandemic highlighted the vital role of the social security system with an unprecedented number of people turning to it during a time of national crisis. Conference believes the experience of claimants during the pandemic has strengthened calls for reform and we currently have the most sustained period of public support for social security since the 1980s.

During the pandemic, many elements of benefit delivery were paused, such as the sanctions and conditionality regime. These changes, alongside others, should be made permanent.

Congress agrees that a concerted attacks on our social security system by this government and some media organisations has hurt all working people. We all have to rely on the safety net during times of need.

Conference believes there is an appetite for change but the Labour Party is failing to grasp the opportunity to propose the vital reforms needed.

Congress welcomes the ‘Not Here to Help’ report, by Equity and the University of Warwick, which analyses creative and cultural workers’ experiences of social security and recommends reforms to Universal Credit (UC).

Congress notes that the application of the UC Minimum Income Floor is causing extreme hardship among self-employed and atypical workers in many industries, including the creative and cultural sectors. As the report from Equity and the University of Warwick evidences:

  • Four out of five members report that UC has not helped them to work in the industry, this compares to three quarters who said that previous social security systems had helped them.
  • 41 per cent of those subject to the MIF have gone without essential items such as food or utilities.
  • 46 per cent of those subject to the MIF have been unable to pay household bills.
  • 5 per cent were forced to leave their home as a result of the MIF. One told us that they were now living out of their car following the MIF being applied.

Congress calls on the General Council to campaign for:

1. An immediate and permanent uplift in benefit rates to match inflation and provide for restoration.

2. The scrapping of punitive measures, including the sanctions and conditionality regime.

3. More resources for the DWP.

Congress also calls on the General Council to:

(i) Review, outline and campaign for changes to disability-related benefits to ensure they meet the needs of disabled people.

(ii) Highlight the negative impact that conditionality and back-to-work narratives have on disabled people’s lives and rights.

Congress recognises the insufficiency of current provision. It endorses and will campaign to achieve the recommendations of Equity’s research including:

1. The abolition of the UC Minimum Income Floor

2. The need for a review of how our social security system treats atypical workers

Mover: PCS
Seconder: Equity
Supporter: NUJ 

C10 Financial services supporting the e-disadvantaged

Received from: Aegis, GMB

Motion 29 and amendments

Since 2015 over 5000 big name banks have disappeared from our high streets. As this trend continues, millions of vulnerable customers are left with little or no access to their cash. Despite the drive to digital not everyone has access to online banking and the loss of face-to-face services throughout the country adversely impacts the e-disadvantaged. Congress recognises that the decline in the Post Office network means that access to in-person banking services and cash has been limited further.

As financial providers continue to prioritise profit over customers’ needs it is now almost impossible to operate financial affairs without technology and those with no or limited access to it are in an increasingly vulnerable position.

Parking a car, using a public phone or accessing a secure internet is increasingly difficult without online access to a bank account.

The e-disadvantaged people are more likely to become victims of financial crime due to their technological inexperience. If they have outdated software or hardware due to lack of ability, funds, or access to sufficient services they are not protected by the industry or the government who have shifted the responsibility for security to the user without ensuring that industry advances have been inclusive and considered.

Therefore, Congress resolves to campaign for a level of secure service for the e-disadvantaged, to give protections that place the onus of access and security on service providers and government, not consumers.

This includes the TUC working with affiliate unions to campaign against the decline of the Post Office network and to campaign for:

  • A legal right to pay for goods and services in person using cash.
  • A statutory obligation on banks and ATM outlets to provide an appropriate network of free-to-use cash deposit and withdrawal services for public access across the UK.
  • An expansion in accessible banking services available through the Post Office.

Mover: AEGIS
Seconder: GMB
Supporter: CWU

Motion 77 National trades unions’ support for trades councils’ solidarity work

Received from: TUC Trades Union Councils Conference

Congress believes that solidarity with workers taking strike action is a fundamental principle of the trade union movement. Therefore, Congress applauds all local trades councils who have been working so hard during 2022 and 2023 to deliver picket line solidarity with strikers from across the spectrum of trade unions – both TUC affiliated and non-affiliated.

However, despite the best efforts of trades councils to reach out to unions, at local level and through regional TUC structures, seeking information on local disputes, their capacity to show solidarity and offer picket line support has in some cases been, limited by less-than-ideal communications between unions and trades councils. Often trades councils are the last to know about disputes, strikes and picket lines in their areas, including when and where the picket lines will be. This makes coordinating public support and inter-union solidarity more difficult and less effective than it should be.

Congress further believes that provision of accurate and timely information is crucial to every aspect of relationship building between trades councils, unions, and their branches. However, many trades councils lack vital information about union branches in their localities.

Congress therefore urges the TUC General Council to encourage all affiliated trade unions to:

i. ensure that all their media and communications officers and/or general secretaries have up to date contact details for all UK (and as appropriate Republic of Ireland) trades councils

ii. ensure, as a matter of routine, that relevant information, including media releases, are sent to all trades councils

iii. ensure that in the run up to and during disputes (whether local, regional, or national), trades councils are sent up-to-date information on strike dates and times, picket lines, how negotiations, if any, are proceeding, and the outcomes of these disputes.

iv. Congress also asks the General Council to write to all affiliated unions, requesting them to ensure that their regional officers are provided with the contact details of trades council secretaries in their region, and that these officers send the names of the relevant branches of their union to each trades council.

Trades Councils Conference

Motion 78 RISKS e-newsletter

Received from: TSSA

For many years the TUC’s weekly RISKS e-newsletter has been an invaluable source of information for health and safety reps across the country alongside the quarterly Hazards magazine. RISKS provides information and analysis on what the government, the TUC, trade unions and other relevant organisations are doing, as well as on campaigns, workplace victories on health and safety and on-going struggles, relevant scientific and technical information on all aspects of health, safety, environment and just transition.

On 23 June, the Hazards Campaign was informed – without any warning or consultation – that TUC had cancelled RISKS with immediate effect, apparently following the withdrawal of funding by Thompson’s Solicitors. This is a major blow to health and safety reps, especially those working in smaller unions without a dedicated health and safety department and to union health and safety officers at all levels within our unions.

This conference registers our concern and disapproval at the abrupt manner in which RISKS has been cancelled and call upon the TUC to reconsider the decision, including seeking alternative sources of financial support;

This conference instructs the TUC to:
i. consult with Hazards magazine with a view to urgently maximising and increasing support and additional funding to ensure the security and sustainability of the magazine

ii. urge all trade councils, union branches and safety reps to ensure they are subscribed to Hazards magazine and encourage others to do so immediately.

Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association

Motion 79 Supporting the Ron Todd Foundation as a movement

Received from: BFAWU

The Ron Todd Foundation has supported 34,733 trade union members over a 12-month period (2021–22) through practical solidarity, Ron Todd House and solidarity education workshops.

The cost-of-living crisis means that working people are struggling with everyday living costs, thus pushing them further into poverty.
Congress agrees that the trade union movement needs to support organisations who offer practical solidarity rather than traditional charity.

Congress therefore resolves:

i. that the TUC becomes a member by affiliating to the Ron Todd Foundation.

ii. to call on trades councils to officially support the Ron Todd Foundation by becoming a member by affiliating.

iii. to call on all TUC-affiliated trade unions to officially support the Ron Todd

Foundation by ensuring that their union nationally supports the charity by becoming a member by affiliating and that members, branches, regions, sectors are proactively encouraged to do the same.

iv. to support the work of the Ron Todd Foundation by publicising the activities of the organisation throughout the networks available to the TUC.

v. to propose to TUC-affiliated trade unions that they publicise the activities of the Ron Todd Foundation as widely as possible.

vi. to request that TUC-affiliated trade unions support the ‘Looking Back to Fight Forward’ campaign by calling on their branches to become part of the Five Hundred Solidarity Network*.

*The Ron Todd Foundation are looking for 500 branches, regions, sectors, unions to donate £500 a year for five years, to enable the Foundation to increase capacity, creating additional solidarity hubs across the regions

Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union

E1 Urgent next steps following unprecedented public response to railway ticket office closures consultation

Received from: RMT

Congress notes the public consultation on proposals to close nearly every railway ticket office closed on 1st September and a statement issued by Labour Metro Mayors on 1st September stated their legal challenge against closures remains ongoing. On 4th September passenger watchdogs announced more than 680,000 responses had been received and as a result the passenger watchdogs decided to extend the period to consider the public responses to 31October. This was the largest ever response to a public consultation. Congress also notes on 7th September a public petition calling for a full parliamentary debate on the issue reached the required threshold.

Congress congratulates the rail unions, disabled people’s campaigning organisations, the TUC, The Mirror newspaper, politicians, and all those who have assisted in mobilising this mass response, highlighting that cuts to ticket office and station staff will make our railways less accessible, safe and affordable.

In light of the new and urgent matters highlighted in the first paragraph of this motion Congress calls on the General Council to:

Seek an urgent meeting before 31 October with the passenger watchdogs to make the case to keep all rail ticket offices open.

Lobby parliament to ensure the parliamentary debates take place before 31st October.

Coordinate with affiliates to explore options for providing support to legal challenges to the closures.

Seek an urgent meeting with government demanding withdrawal of the closures and other threats to rail workers jobs and conditions which have caused the disputes with the rail unions.


Moved:          National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers

Seconded:     Transport Salaried Staffs’ Association

E2 Collapse of Wilko – save the high street

Received from: GMB

Congress notes that Wilko’s administrators told GMB on 11 September 2023 that all Wilko stores are set to close by early October.

Wilko’s distribution centres will close next Friday. Redundancy is now likely for all 12,500 Wilko workers, most of whom are low-paid women.

Congress recognises that:

1. GMB reps and officers have worked exhaustively to try to secure a future for Wilko and its workers.

2. Wilko’s shareholders extracted dividends worth £77 million over the last decade while the business struggled.

3. Wilko senior management failed to act on warnings that a serious turnaround plan was needed.

4. That UK company administration law maximises value for preferred creditors at the expense of jobs and terms and conditions.

High street retail is an essential part of our communities. But across the UK, brick and mortar retail jobs are under threat from predatory ownership models and an antiquated Business Rates regime.

Congress calls on the General Council to:

a. Express its solidarity and support for all Wilko workers.

b. Support GMB in its efforts to secure alternative employment for Wilko workers who face redundancy.

c. Campaign for reform of company administration law and a viable future for the high street.

Moved:  GMB

Seconded:  USDAW

Motion 76 The role of trades councils

Received from: POA

Congress accepts that trades councils have a rich history in the trade union movement and play an active part in communities supporting the wider movement and TUC campaigns. Further it is recognised that trades councils have a combined affiliated membership of hundreds of thousands of members throughout the movement. Yet, trades councils are seriously under-represented within Congress.

Currently, they are entitled to a single delegate to Congress and can submit only one motion. Trades councils’ total affiliated membership, in a single trade union, would mean a far larger Congress delegation. Congress, therefore, agrees a rule change so that at Congress 2024, trades councils shall be entitled to:

i. a Congress delegation of three

ii. a single seat on the TUC General Council, and that the trades councils’ Congress delegation shall be entitled to speak and vote on any motion, amendment or other Congress business, in addition to its own single motion.