London CND welcomes the decision of the TUC Congress 2017 to lobby the Labour Party to set up a Shadow Defence Diversification Agency before the next general election, and work to develop a national industrial strategy which includes the possibility of arms conversion.
The Unite union’s support for the motion is particularly welcome, but the GMB opposed it. CND general secretary, Kate Hudson welcomed the news. ‘Jobs are often presented as an argument in favour of Trident replacement, so it's essential that there is a plan to secure alternative high-skilled jobs and to create many more jobs.’
Motion 17, Defence, jobs and diversification, from the Artists Union England, recalled the ground-breaking plan for alternative, socially useful work pioneered by the Lucas Aerospace workers in 1976. It highlighted ‘a convergence of crises – militarism and nuclear weapons, climate chaos, and the destruction of jobs by automation’, but acknowledged that defence workers ‘are rightly concerned about the potential loss of jobs, for example if Trident replacement is cancelled’. Read the text in full