New TUC general secretary pledges to deliver ‘a trade union movement for every worker in this country’

Paul Nowak committed to grow and diversify the UK's trade union movement.

TUC general secretary designate Paul Nowak

In January, Paul Nowak will take over from Frances O’Grady as general secretary of the TUC. On the afternoon of October 19, he addressed the 2022 TUC Congress as the union federation’s general secretary designate.

He used his speech to set out his vision for the TUC, which centred around growing and diversifying the trade union movement. He told delegates, “I will spend my time leading the TUC focused on one thing above anything else. That is growing, diversifying, strengthening our movement. More union members, more union reps, an active inclusive, confident vibrant, diverse movement”, adding that he wanted to build “a trade union movement for every worker in this country”.

Later, he said that growing the trade union movement would be crucial to winning the changes it was campaigning for. He said, “Only a stronger trade union movement can win disputes right across the public and the private sector. Only a stronger trade union movement can influence government and beat back hostile legislation. And only a stronger trade union movement and indeed a stronger labour and trade union movement can bring about the political change our members desperately need.”

He also used his speech to thank O’Grady for her decade as general secretary, arguing that among her biggest achievements was the Covid-19 furlough scheme. He said, “there would have been no furlough scheme” without O’Grady’s work.

Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward

Left Foot Forward’s trade union coverage is supported by the Barry Amiel & Norman Melburn Trust

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Image credit: TUC livestream

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