Thursday, 22 June 2017

Now You’re the Voices For the Dead

Please read this powerful and emotional poem writtien by our colleague Davy Kettyles from Unite.

Flanked by opulence and riches,
Stands a tombstone for the poor,
A landmark to indifference
To agony endured,
Warnings mocked and laughed at,
by the mighty of this land,
till the flames lit up the darkness,
and exposed this brigand band.

On the top floors of the tower,
Beyond firefighters reach,
Trapped, children and their mothers cried,
save us, hear them screech
all praying for a miracle, on phones some said  goodbye,
they've no angels wings to fly away,
they may get them, when they die.

As the smoke and flames engulf them,
and their last breath they inhale,
Their deaths will live in infamy
But truth it shall prevail,
hold to account the guilty,
on their shoulders place their crime.
For profit before people
Was the reason and the rhyme 

Neath the skyline of this city
Stands tall this blackened shell,
ash carried on the morning breeze
and the smoke you still can smell.
Cometh  righteous indignation,
Cry justice, - must be said
Arise arise the many,
now you’re the voices for the dead.

Davy Kettyles
June 17th  2017

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

ATUC Special Meeting - Learning the lessons of the Grenfell Tower Tragedy

Aberdeen TUC  has called a special meeting with a speaker from the Fire Brigades Union (FBU)  to help us start to learn some of the lessons from the Grenfell Tower disaster.

This will take place at the UNITE office 44 King Street, Aberdeen AB24 5TJ at 6.45pm on Tuesday 27th June.

All delegates are invited.

In view of the importance of the issue some key residents organisations are also to be invited.

Kevin Hutchens, Joint President, who has organised the meeting had previously sent a message of condolence, support and solidarity to all those affected by the Grenfell Tower tragedy.
Kevin had said, "Aberdeen TUC sends its sympathy and support to all affected by the Grenfell Tower fire.For those killed in the tragedy we grieve, to the relatives and friends we send our condolences, to those injured we send our best wishes for recovery, to the rescue workers we send our admiration and gratitude for their bravery and to the community we send our solidarity.

"While recognising investigations have to be completed we call for justice to be done and for every effort to be made to ensure this never happens again."

Kevin added, "The meeting will start with a minutes silence as a mark of respect for all those who lost their lives in this appalling tragedy.

"I look forward to seeing you there."

Sunday, 4 June 2017

Aberdeen Trade Union Council stands with the people of London and all those around the world affected by terrorist attacks.

Aberdeen Trades Union Council stands united in solidarity with the people of London,  as we did with the people of Manchester last week. We condemn last night's terrorist atrocity and all terrorist atrocities around the world, and we send our sympathy to the bereaved and best wishes for full recovery to the injured.

Terrorism will never prevail over the people, Only by working together in harmony can the forces of terror be defeated. Thanks to all the health service workers and emergency services keeping our streets safe, and to all those courageous citizens who went to the aid of those attacked.

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Aberdeen Trades Union Council stands with Manchester

The thoughts of Aberdeen Trades Union Council are with all those caught up in the terrible events in Manchester where yet again we have seen innocent people killed and injured in an appalling attack. We condemn these acts against innocents, and especially the targeting of children. We have no words.

We wish to pay tribute to all the emergency services who from all accounts were outstanding as always in extremely difficult circumstances. And to the many citizens of Manchester who rallied to support those affected, including taxi drivers from all different ethnic backgrounds, standing together as we all must against such horrific acts.

We stand in solidarity with all the people of Manchester, Britain and the world against hatred and division. Terrorism will not be allowed to divide our communities.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Congratulations to FELA on their pay victory

Aberdeen Trades Union Council congratulates the EIS Further Education Lecturer’s Association (FELA) in their pay victory with colleges, as a result of strike action by members.  

The union has now suspended all future strike action.

EIS General Secretary Larry Flanagan said: "Following a further round of talks, we have reached a position where Colleges Scotland have agreed to honour the deal.

"This is a significant victory for EIS Further Education Lecturers' Association (EIS-FELA) members and it means that the employers will move immediately to implement Phase 1 of the March 2016 pay agreement."

Lecturers had taken strike action to make colleges implement the Agreement they signed up to in March 2016.  

This deal agreed equal pay for lecturers across Scotland by 2019, with the first payment due in April 2017, and set out key dates for harmonisation of “Terms & Conditions” across colleges in Scotland – all of which have been missed.  

This Agreement was a consequence of the return to national bargaining after 20 years, and which was promised in the 2011 SNP Manifesto.  Local pay bargaining had led to a £12,000 pay gap for some lecturers in the sector, with differences in terms and conditions. 

Next ATUC delegates meeting on 7th June at 22a Adelphi. All welcome

The next meeting of Aberdeen Trades Union Council will be held on Wednesday 7th June at 7.30pm in ATUC premises, 22a Adelphi, Aberdeen. 

There is the usual packed agenda including our planning for the 150th Anniversary celebrations in 2018. The STUC have indicated their support for our plans and will bring a General Council meeting to Aberdeen in the course of the year. We will also review a very successful May Day march and rally.

All delegates and associates are welcome to attend and we hope to see you there.

Sunday, 14 May 2017

Register to vote NOW. Don't lose your chance to transform your future for the many not the few

This week a YouGov poll revealed that 18 - 40 year olds overwhelmingly support Labour, with Labour commanding a 15% lead over the Tories among young people.

Unfortunately 2.4 million young people are missing from the electoral register and millions more, of all ages, have never been inspired to vote. But this election is different. Now we have the chance to radically transform our society by electing a government for the many, not the elite few.

The deadline to register to vote is Monday 22nd May.
 If millions of people register in the next two weeks, then we’ll have already won.

Here’s two things you can do to make it happen:

1. Don’t lose your vote
If you’re not already registered to vote, register now. It takes just 2 minutes, and all you need is your national insurance number. Remember, if you’re a UK resident from the Republic of Ireland or a Commonwealth country you're eligible to vote. 
If you’re not sure where you’ll be on 8th June, make sure you register for a postal vote. Just fill out this form and post or email it to your Electoral Registration Office. It must reach them by 5pm on 23rd May, so make sure to send it this week.

2. Get everyone you know to register
If every single one of us gets five people to register, we’ll win this election. Do your bit, make sure your friends and family are all registered to vote by 22nd May.

Share this video on your Facebook and forward this email to five people telling them to register to make their mark on this historic election.

If millions of us rise up and have our say, we will get Jeremy into Number 10. Let’s fix this rigged system and build a society for the many, not the few.

Sunday, 7 May 2017

Aberdeen May Day March calls for human rights for all and an end to poverty

Blue skies and sunshine greeted the hundreds of trade unionists, politicians and community activists as they turned out to celebrate International Workers’ Day.

The May Day March and Rally in Aberdeen,  held on Saturday 6th May, was organised by ATUC. As always, it was a colourful sight as the procession of banners and flags made its way down Union Street behind the stirring beats of the Guarana Drummers, to call for an end to poverty in one of the world's richest countries. And a celebration of the basic human and workers' rights workers and their families deserve, including decent wages and health and safety standards.

The rally in the Castlegate was co-chaired by ATUC co-Presidents, Kevin Hutchens and Tyrinne Rutherford. Kevin roused the crowds with a poem that he had written for the occasion.

Thursday, 4 May 2017

May Day March and Rally in Aberdeen - Get along and celebrate International Workers' Day

A reminder to get along if you can to Aberdeen Trade Union Council's May Day March and Rally on Sat 6th May. Gather at Rubislaw Terrace at 11am to march off at 11.30am  The Guarana Drummers will be leading the March and it will be colourful and vibrant with the drummers, flags and banners on display. Rally at the Castlegate at 12.15pm. Hope you can make it.

ATUC Annual Report 2016

ATUC Annual Report 2016
Aberdeen Trades Union Council is pleased to announce the publication of our Annual Report for 2016, which is now available for download from this website.

If you would like hard copies of this report to distribute within your organisations, please contact us on our Facebook page and we can arrange to get copies to you.

This year all the work for typesetting and collating the report was done by our very own Morag Lawrence, and there are many hours of work involved in pulling it all together so we send a big thank you to Morag, and also to everyone else involved, including all the trade unions and other organisations who help to support the work of the ATUC throughout the year, and who support the production of the annual report by providing articles and adverts.

Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Next ATUC delegates meeting Wed 3rd May at 7.30pm. Exec Meeting at 6.45pm

The next ATUC delegates' meeting will be held tomorrow evening, Wed 3rd May at 7.30pm at 22a Adelphi, Aberdeen. Please get along if you can.

There is a lot to discuss including the final arrangements for the May Day March and Rally on Saturday 6th May.

There will also be a report back from STUC Congress from delegates as well as the usual trade reports and the activity reports which will include a report of the International Workers' Memorial Day service.

Please note, there will also be a meeting of the ATUC Exec just before it at 6.45pm

Hope to see you all there.

Monday, 1 May 2017

ATUC joins Dundee TUC at their May Day celebrations to commemorate their 150th anniversary year

ATUC representatives Kathleen Kennedy, Brian Carroll, Steve Gray and Tommy Campbell travelled to Dundee on Saturday 29th April to join trade unionists and activists from across Scotland to celebrate May Day and the 150th anniversary of the Dundee Trades Union Council. 

The bright new banner of the Dundee Trades Union Council led the march into and around the City Centre to the Marketgait, where speakers reminded people of the need to stay strong and work together to fight austerity, poverty and injustice.  

150 years ago workplace negotiations were based upon the Masters and Servants Act which treated a breach of contract by an employer as a civil matter but a trade union activity as criminal act.  Dundee Trades Union Council spokesperson (Mick) reminded all of us we needed to stop this sort of legislation from happening again.

We are delighted that representatives of Dundee TUC will join our May Day March and Rally in Aberdeen on Saturday 6th April with their new banner. We will make them very welcome. 

Click here for details of the ATUC May Day event.

Friday, 28 April 2017

Moving Workers' Memorial Day ceremony pledges to remember the dead, fight for the living

Kevin Hutchens
The weather was kind as a crowd gathered to commemorate International Workers' Memorial Day, to mourn those who have lost their lives, and to pledge to fight to ensure no other worker is killed, injured or made ill at their work.

Wreaths were laid by Aberdeen City Council, trade unions from Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire, the Aberdeen Trades Union Council who organised the event and from Unite the union.

ATUC joint-President, Kevin Hutchens welcomed everyone and asked for a two minute silence for everyone to remember and mourn those who did not return from their work.

Andrew Lawtie
Andrew Lawtie, Lord Lieutenant, on behalf of the Provost of Aberdeen reminded those gathered that today, around the world, bereaved families, workers, trade unionists and campaigners come together to remember those who have died, been injured or made ill by their work.

"Aberdeen City Council support this event so that we firstly ensure that those workers are remembered and that such tragic loss is not repeated and their suffering is used to reinvigorate the campaign for healthier and safer work.

"Fighting for the living is equally important," added Andrew, pledging to work with trade unions to make all work a safer and healthier activity for all workers.

Monday, 17 April 2017

"Remember the dead, fight for the living" Come along to this year's Workers' Memorial Day service on 28th April.

This year's Workers' Memorial Day Service, organised by Aberdeen Trades Union Council, will be held on Friday 28th April at the Persley Walled Garden, Bridge of Don, Aberdeen. Meet at 12.30pm for the ceremony at 1.00pm.

All delegates, affiliates and friends are invited to come along and join us to "remember the dead, fight for the living."

What is Workers Memorial Day?
International Workers Memorial Day (IWMD) takes place all over the world on 28 April each year.

The campaign slogan is "Remember the dead, fight for the living."

The purpose of IWMD is two-fold. Firstly it is about not forgetting those who have died, been injured, or made ill by their work. Secondly it is about ensuring that this tragic loss and suffering are used to reinvigorate the campaign for healthier and safer work.

In this time of austerity, it is ever more important to protect our Health and Safety legislation, which is constantly under attack.

The Service will last for approx 30mins.

Thursday, 23 March 2017

Next ATUC Delegates' Meeting on Wed 5th April at 7.30pm - Pre-meeting at 6.30pm. All welcome!

The next Aberdeen Trades Union Council Delegates' meeting is due to take place on Wednesday 5 April 2017 at 7.30pm in John Londragan House, 22A Adelphi, Aberdeen. This is the first Delegates' meeting after the AGM with the newly elected officers in place.

The agenda has within it items to be discussed such as International Workers' Memorial Day on 28th April, Dundee TUC May Day March and Rally on 29th April and our own ATUC May Day March and Rally on 6th May.

We will also be discussing the ATUC 150th Anniversary proposed events and activities at a pre-meeting in the same venue at 6.30pm.

All Delegates welcome to both meetings and we hope as many delegates as possible are able to attend both meetings on the night.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

ATUC marches against racism

Aberdeen Trades Union Council joined more than 3000 activists and trade unionists on the March Against Racism in Glasgow today (Sat 18 March).

Led by co-president Tyrinne Rutherford and joint secretaries, John Connon and Gerry McCabe, the ATUC banner and delegation took their place towards the front of the March as it snaked its way through Glasgow streets.

The marchers were noisy and good natured as they called for an end to racism and xenophobia, no deportations and no walls, and made it clear that refugees are welcome here. Shoppers stopped to watch the lively procession and even a few drops of rain couldn't dampen the marchers spirits and determination to fight racism and xenophobia in Scotland, the UK and across the world.

Steve Gray and Kate Ramsden were also amongst the marchers, adding their voices to the struggle for equality and social justice for all.

ATUC joins other Trades Union Councils
There were inspiring speeches including from Helen Connor, STUC President, from UNISON's Davena Rankin, from Richard Falk ex-UN Rapporteur on Palestine, and from Glasgow girls Emma and Amal amongst others.

They all had the same messages.

"We will not tolerate racism and fascism."

"We will welcome refugees and asylum seekers."

"Love has no borders."

Monday, 13 March 2017

Free bus to Stand up to Racism March in Glasgow on Saturday 18th March. Book your seat now!

There is a March against Racism demo taking place in Glasgow on Saturday 18th March and it is important that as many of us as possible get along and join the massed voices to say that racism is not welcome in Scotland.

A free bus is going from Aberdeen to Glasgow and back to join the march and the organisers want as many people as possible to come along. So click on the link below to book a spot (or spots) on the bus, there is limited space so be fast!

Click here to book your seat.

Click here to find out more about the march

The bus will pick up people at 8.00am from the University campus (in front of the library) and then go to the central library and pick up people at 8.15 am. 

Hope to see you all there

"Palestine's Horizon - Toward a Just Peace" Hear Richard Falk, Former UN Special Rapporteur for Palestine

Please get along if you can and hear Richard Falk speak on 16th March at 6pm in New Kings, LT10, University of Aberdeen.

When he arrived in Tel Aviv airport leading an official UN delegation, Richard Falk was detained and expelled by Israel, who refused him entry to Palestine to gather data first hand. He nonetheless reported back to the United Nations in 2008 that "Israel maintains its Gaza siege in its full fury, allowing only barely enough food and fuel to enter to stave off mass famine and disease." He asked the UN to evaluate whether "Israeli civilian leaders and military commanders responsible for the Gaza siege should be indicted and prosecuted for violations of international criminal law". On December 27 that year Falk condemned Israel strikes on Gaza as "war crimes", collective punishment, and targetting of civilians. 

Falk was bitterly attacked by the US, Israel and the UK Governments for his findings. The murderous siege of Gaza continues in "in its full fury". Falk supports the Palestinian call for BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) against Israel until it concedes Palestinian rights.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Celebrate International Women's Day on Wed 8th March 2017

Aberdeen Trade Union Council invites you to rally at the Castlegate on Wednesday 8th March at 6:30 - 8pm to celebrate International Womens Day and show solidarity with women across the world. 

Kathleen Kennedy, ATUC Vice President said, "This is an impromptu event to stand in solidarity with women across Scotland, the UK and the World."

Click here to see the Facebook page

"Despite years of struggle women are still under-represented in many walks of life, we still earn less than our male counterparts and we are still most likely to suffer domestic abuse and other forms of male violence.

"We are appalled by Trump's attitude towards women as towards other minority groups and we need to stand together and shoe that this is unacceptable.

"Please come along and stand with us on Wednesday. Bring banners and placards." 

The theme of International Women's Day this year is  #BeBoldForChange. Organisers are calling on the masses and calling on individuals to help forge a better working world - a more gender inclusive world.

"Let's do our bit," urged Kathleen.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Invitation to the AGM of Aberdeen Trades Union Council on Wed 1st March 2017 - All welcome

Delegates and associates are warmly invited to come along to the Aberdeen Trades Union Council AGM on Wednesday 1st March at 7.30pm in John Londragan House, 2a Adelphi, Aberdeen.

With its usual packed Agenda the AGM will approve ATUC office bearers for the coming year.

Plans for the 150th Anniversary of the ATUC in 2018 are also well underway and will be an item for discussion at the AGM.

Please get along if you possibly can.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Aberdeen opposes Trump #MuslimBan - Protest tonight 6-8pm in the Castlegate

A protest against Trump's #MuslimBan will be held in the Castlegate, Aberdeen today from 6-8pm to show solidarity with all those who are affected by Trump's racist and mysoginistic policies.

Organiser, Fiona-Jayne Massie said, "We dinnae like Trump, but we're awfae fond o' oor foreign family members, friends, workmates, neighbours, shopkeepers, dog-walkers, strangers... Whoever!

"Let's not mince our words: Trump's new legislation against countries with a majority Muslim population is SECTARIANISM against Muslims, and RACISM against the citizens of the seven nations now banned from entering the USA. It's destroying lives. It's stopping normal people from going home to see their family, or stopping people from going home to America to resume their lives. So let's show solidarity with the rest of the planet who aren't racist idiots. How? PROTEST!"

The event is family friendly! Animal friendly! Bring placards, musical instruments, and warm clothing! Please ask if you have any accessibility concerns.

Click here for more details

Next ATUC Delegates Meeting will be held on Wed 1st Feb at 7.30pm - please get along if you can.

The next ATUC Delegates Meeting will be held on Wed 1st February at 7.30pm in John Londragan House, 22A Adelphi, Aberdeen.

This is the last meeting before the AGM on 1st March 2017 and is a very important meeting where we look at nominations for officers posts for election at the AGM.

Can we also remind delegates that affiliations are now due? You can affiliate on this website - details on the right hand side.

Colin Jones, ATUC Treasurer said, "This year promises to be a busy year for the ATUC, as along with our usual support of branches and organisations we will be working on a number of different projects to get ready for our 150th anniversary next year.

"We have some really exciting ideas for planned for that and as such we very much hope your trade union will support us by affiliating for 2017."

Please note that affiliations and renewals should be made by the end of February if you want to participate in the ATUC’s Annual General Meeting. 

Colin added, "We can only exist because trade unions like yours support us, and whether your branch has been a long time affiliate, or you wish to join us for the first time this year, we’d be very happy for your support.

 "If your branch already affiliates, but you know of other branches in your union who don’t then please spread the word"

Friday, 27 January 2017

Holocaust Memorial Day Walk 28th January - Lest we forget

You are welcome to join Aberdeen Interfaith Group members at their HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL WALK on SATURDAY 28 JANUARY along the river and across the bridges, to remember those who have died and those who have survived Genocides.



See Aberdeen City's Holocaust Memorial event below 

What is Holocaust Memorial Day and why must we never forget?

Holocaust Memorial Day takes place on 27 January each year. It’s a time for everyone to pause to remember the millions of people who have been murdered or whose lives have been changed beyond recognition during the Holocaust, Nazi Persecution and in subsequent genocides in Cambodia, Rwanda, Bosnia and Darfur.

Holocaust Memorial Day - Lest we forget

Aberdeen City Council's Holocaust Memorial Day event will take place on Sunday 29th January 2017 at the Belmont Filmhouse.

The event is organised by Aberdeen City Council along with a number of partners including the University  of Aberdeen, GREC, and Unite.

The event is free but booking is essential. The documentary will be screened at 3.15pm.

Booking can be made by phoning Belmont Filmhouse Box Office -Tel: 01224 343500
or  via

The programme for the event is as follows:

Friday, 13 January 2017

Aberdeen Trades Union Council Affiliations Due for 2017

This year promises to be a busy year for the ATUC, as along with our usual support of branches and organisations we will be working on a number of different projects to get ready for our 150th anniversary next year. We have some really exciting ideas for planned for that and as such we very much hope your trade union will support us by affiliating for 2017.

We can only exist because trade unions like yours support us, and whether your branch has been a long time affiliate, or you wish to join us for the first time this year, we’d be very happy for your support.

Affiliating is simple and easy to do online – just click the button in the top right of this page or go direct to complete the form. We will then send an invoice to the branch contact you nominate.

Please note that affiliations and renewals should be made by the end of February if you want to participate in the ATUC’s Annual General Meeting.

If your branch already affiliates, but you know of other branches in your union who don’t then please spread the word!

Friday, 6 January 2017

Next ATUC delegates' meeting will be held on Wed 11th January 2017 at 6.45pm. All welcome!

The first ATUC Delegates' Meeting of the new year is on Wed 11th January 2017 at 6.45pm. Please note the earlier time for the meeting commencing, due to pressure of business.

The meeting will be held in ATUC premises, John Londragan House, 22A Adelphi, Aberdeen. All delegates and associates are warmly invited to attend.

At this month's meeting we will have our usual packed agenda, which this month includes consideration of motions to the STUC Congress in April. Delegates interested in attending this year's STUC Congress, on behalf of ATUC, should nominate themselves at this meeting. There will also be an update on the plans for the 150th Anniversary celebrations for the ATUC in 2018 and we will be looking for affiliates and associates to take on responsibility for relevant arrangements. The ATUC Annual Report 2016 will also be on the Agenda with a view to compiling articles and seeking adverts. 

There will be no speaker given the business to get through. We hope as many Affiliates and associates are able to attend as possible.