Congress Equality Conference, Nov 2010
70 Trade Unionists gathered in the Clarion Hotel, Dublin Airport on Wednesday 24th November to discuss trade union strategies for a more equal society and workplaces. The keynote speaker was Richard Wilkinson, co-author of the Spirit Level. Kat Banyard, author of the Equality Illusion, also made an address to the conference.
Congress President, Jack O'Connor, spoke about the imminent publication of the Government's National Recovery Plan 2011-2014 and made the case for an alternative approach that could reference the experience of other countries in Northern Europe who have placed equality at the centre of their development strategies. He said the key lesson from such countries was that equality was not just a moral or idealistic choice but has been proven but is also better for society and economically superior. He urged all to participate actively in the Congress campaign against the government's approach, beginning with active participation in the national demonstration on Saturday 27th November.
Renee Dempsey, CEO, Equality Authority - The importance of strategic partnerships in the quest for Equality, click here:
Richard Wilkinson Presentation on his groundbreaking research as to why more equal societies almost always do better;
Kathy Monks, DCU: presentation on 'The Business Case for Equality and Diversity';
Niall Crowley - independent equality consultant and developing Ireland's first Charter for equality and human rights for ERA; Niall also spoke about the importance of trade unions and other civil society groups uniting around the inspiring vision and practical policy agenda agreed at Claiming our Future on October 30th. There was a strong consensus around the priority to be given to five values, with Equality at number one.
Sile Larkin, Equality Tribunal; Case work from the Equality Tribunal,.
Trade Union Initiatives:
Billy Hannigan, PSEU click here;
Carol Schaeffer, CWU
Aileen Morrisey, MANDATE
Belinda Perry, ESBOA;
Theresa Dwyer, CPSU, click here
Anne Speed, SIPTU, click here
David Begg closed the conference with reference to some of the most offensive elements of the Government's plan for national recovery, which Congress has described as "savage and regressive"