Academics, trade unionists and activists to debate and organise for the future of collective action in Scotland
ACADEMICS, trade unionists and community activists will meet today at the University of the West of Scotland to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Caterpillar occupation in Uddingston and discuss how its lessons can be used in Scotland today.
The event, titled Trade Unions in Economic and Social Life: Past, Present and Future, takes place from 2pm today and will see members of the Caterpillar workers’ legacy group discuss the contemporary relevance of one of the most famous workers’ occupations in Scottish industrial history.
In 1987, hundreds of workers occupied their Uddingston plant after it was scheduled for closure by the corporation. They were helped in their efforts by the local community, including an effective women’s campaign. They ended their occupation after 103 days, winning improved severance packages amongst other partial victories, but the plant ultimately closed.
In 1987, hundreds of workers occupied their Uddingston plant after it was scheduled for closure by the corporation. They were helped in their efforts by the local community, including an effective women’s campaign.
Speaking to CommonSpace, historian and UWS sociology lecturer Dr Ewan Gibbs said: “The event is about involving workers young and old, and academic voices, in discussing trade unions as important movements that challenged the powerful in the workplace, as they did at Uddingston in 1987. Contributors will discuss how we can do so again in 21st century circumstances.”
The event will also hear from academics including Emeritus Professor at UWS John Foster and from the Better than Zero campaign, who are attempting to adapt innovative workplace organising strategies in the 21st century Scottish economy.
The event takes place at the University of the West of Scotland, Hamilton Campus, Caird Building, Wednesday 22nd March, 2017, 2pm-3.45pm – accessible from Hamilton West railway station.
Picture courtesy of Ignat Gorazd
Check out what people are saying about how important CommonSpace is: Pledge your support today.