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Branch Secretary’s Report 25 March 2009

Posted by steve1917 in NUJ.
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The past 12 months have continued a process of change in our industry that has impinged, particularly, on members of this branch. Further redundancies and financial cutbacks across the entire newspaper and agencies sector have thrown up ongoing challenges that your union and this branch have had to address. The branch, its constituent chapels and the NUJ overall, has risen to these challenges, successfully fighting against compulsory redundancies and campaigning for quality journalism. The union’s revitalised strategy, formulated at the recent Jobs Summit, will help to protect jobs, seize new opportunities and add impetus to our struggle. However, in order to ensure that we maintain a strong voice within the media industry, it is more imperative than ever that we recruit from among those already working in our sectors as well as new arrivals. For those of us who have striven to bring new members into the fold, the one startling response we have had from potential members is that they had not joined before because nobody has asked them! This is staggering. So, I would urge every member to ask at least one other non-NUJ colleague to join. I would also urge the incoming branch officers to approach lapsed members and encourage them to return to full membership as well as helping those who are currently unemployed. Last year, I reported the transfer of Reuters members to Canary Wharf Branch and Daily & Sunday Telegraph members from canary Wharf to London Central. Now we are in the process of welcoming some 600 or so members from Canary wharf Branch, which has decided to merge with London Central. While it is always a sad occasion to witness the demise of a branch, in the current circumstances that face this union it may be the opportune time for such a merger. I am standing down this year as Branch Secretary after seven years. I would like to thank my current and former colleagues on the branch committee as well as chapel officers and other members for the efforts they have put in during my sojourn and for the courtesy and consideration they have shown me. I hand over the mantle at a time when this branch has never been stronger and can only gain strength from the addition of our Canary wharf colleagues. I hope that I have played my part in help to maintain our solidarity. Once again I will leave you with what I believe should be the branch maxim: Recruit! Recruit! Recruit! Jim Humphries

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