Launch Video and Declaration

 
 

Watch my announcement video.


LAUNCH DECLARATION

PCS AGS election – unite for change

In the spring, PCS members will elect an Assistant General Secretary to serve for the next five years, and I wish to put myself forward for nomination for that position.

I believe it is vital that the next AGS is a socialist woman. I strongly supported PCS president Janice Godrich’s candidacy for AGS, and was deeply saddened when she withdrew her nomination.

I have lifelong experience of trade unionism at all levels, and I have led industrial successes in our union. The platform on which I am standing is one of change and for unity.  

I am focused  on building the capacity of our members to take action, implementing the policies and strategies of our conference and giving voice and space for far wider and diverse participation in our democracy and structures for women, BAME members, disabled, LGBT+ and most importantly, succession planning for young members.  After a generation of unity on the Left in the leadership of our union we cannot allow our collective vision for the next generation to be undermined.

We need to build, grow and win in a union of 64% women. That requires a forward looking, fresher approach to democracy where women’s participation is included and respected on equal terms.

PCS needs a more open politics, and more diversity. We need a genuine democracy based on open and honest actions, accountability, and support for members fighting to defend their interests.


Here’s where I stand

I am a member of the Labour Party and the Campaign for Socialism (Momentum in Scotland). I strongly support Corbyn and McDonnell.

  • President of the Scottish Trades Union Congress

  • Lifelong union member; been a member of Unite, TGWU, GMB, PTC, NALGO, USDAW in addition to PCS

  • Rep, BEC member, equalities officer, delegate to trades council, delegate to STUC congresses.

  • Organised picket line coordination, strike marches and rallies

  • Delivered PCS solidarity support to other unions in dispute

  • Regular monthly payments to PCS fighting fund since it was set up

As a full time officer of PCS, I have on principle not joined Left Unity. I believe LU should be solely a lay organisation. . I have given unstinting support and work openly to deliver the democratic mandates of PCS members, our conference and the strategy of the NEC.

However, in standing for election now, it is necessary to clarify exactly where I stand, so there can be no doubt. I support Fran Heathcote for President, Left Unity and the Democracy Alliance slate for the NEC.

My over-riding priority is building our members’ power to win better pay

Civil servants’ pay is now 10% worse off than all other public sector workers. And unless we all act together the government will widen this gap by holding pay down.

Scotland showed the highest turn out in the national ballot of all regions and nations.  At the same time we won a pay-cap busting rise for our devolved Scottish Government sector workers in 2018-19. That happened because lay activists and union staff worked together to build ballot-ready workplaces over all other priorities.

We know that civil service bosses connived to keep pay rises at 1.5% or below, even when more money was available.

Those arguing for a disaggregated ballot, with or without discrete demands, contrary to ADC and NEC policy, are tactically wrong. I see dangers in allowing the bosses to divide and rule on departmental pay.  I welcome the NEC’s decision to deepen our organising effort in workplaces, consult widely on  a further statutory ballot in the spring for a single UK civil service-wide national ballot for strike action on pay.

Now is the time to be bold. We can win a fair pay rise, but only if we build confidence in our members of their own power. We must funnel all our efforts into breaking through the 50% threshold in the national ballot.

I support the NEC agreed strategy for uniting around central demands for national pay.


Change and unity at the top

We now desperately need change at the top so that we can have unity of purpose in our leadership, senior officers and national executive.

As a candidate of unity and change, I will seek to promote a positive case and a forward vision and plan to deliver for our members and not resort to negative attacks on any other candidate’s characters.  There must be no place in PCS for disrespectful, sexist or undermining behaviours towards those who participate in our electoral democracy.

I have the support of the General Secretary, Mark Serwotka

I support the NEC’s strategic objectives, pay strategy and political strategy and I am committed to implementing and delivering the democratically agreed priorities of ADC and the strategy of the NEC


Track record to deliver

The five years ahead are uncertain for PCS members and workers generally. 

  • The prospect of a no-deal Brexit is still very real. 

  • There is a real possibility of a Corbyn-led Labour Government that can make radical socialist changes to how government functions

  • A further Independence referendum in Scotland is likely

  • The far right and rising racism is a real threat in working class BAME communities

As a PCS staff member for over 14 years, I have driven successful industrial strategies to victory, securing for 30,000 devolved Scottish workers a no compulsory redundancy guarantee for over 10 years, a real Living Wage, and better rights for agency workers. 

I helped design the current PCS campaign unit and managed its set up. I have confidence in our political strategy of deepening our influence with the shadow front bench. The opportunity of a radical Labour government introducing policies aligned to our own should not be missed. 

I designed and delivered the union’s political strategy in the Scottish independence referendum.  PCS was commended for genuinely engaging our Scottish membership in the debate, where other unions lacked. 

I understand the nuances of the Scotland, Wales and N Ireland devolved political environments and I am therefore uniquely placed to deliver our work on constitutional matters including Brexit, independence referendums and work in the devolved nations.

But this election is about more than the candidates’ records. It’s for members to decide who they believe can work with the General Secretary and senior elected officers in unity and to implement the NEC’s strategies and ADC policies.

- Lynn Henderson, PCS national officer for Scotland & Ireland