Date Released: 24 March 2014
Congress General Secretary David Begg has been confirmed as the final speaker for the current series of trade union lectures run by the People’s College. Begg will deliver the closing lecture in the series, on Thursday, 27th March on the theme of: Trade Union Structures in the Modern World: Fit for Purpose? It will take place in the People’s College, 31 Parnell at 6.30 p.m.
Speaking ahead of the lecture, Begg said: “If you were starting from scratch and designing a union movement fit for the 21st Century, it is highly unlikely you would emerge with the current model, where a combined North-South workforce of 2.6 million is served by some 48 affiliated unions of varying size and capacity.
“Add to this the almost visceral hostility to the organised working class that is a key feature of the neoliberal era and you have a series of major challenges to which the movement must respond.
“It’s time we started picking the battles we need to fight and the ground on which we fight them. I welcome the opportunity to discuss these critical issues as part of this innovative lecture series organised by the People’s College. The series is an important initiative that provides space for workers and unions to engage and debate,” Begg said.
People's College President and former TUI General Secretary Jim Dorney said that the College is in the process of expanding its reach and welcomed the generosity and goodwill shown throughout the series, as the College reaffirms long standing links with the trade union movement.
"I have been delighted with how the lectures have been received by students and guests and I am looking forward to hearing Mr Begg’s considered thoughts on the future direction of the movement,” he said.
Dorney added that he was encouraged by the well-attended discussions and robust debate over the last eight weeks and looked forward to hosting many more such events at the People's College.