Satnam Ner becomes first black president of STUC

Written by Tom Freeman on 26 April 2017 in News

New STUC president Satnam Ner says it is an important moment for trade unionism in Scotland

Trade unions - Dominic Alves

The Scottish Trades Union Congress (STUC) has elected its first black president at its annual congress in Aviemore.

Prospect's Satnam Ner, a scientist in the defence industry at Babcock in Rosyth, will step up from being the trade union body's first black vice president.

He replaces teacher Helen Connor in the role which is elected annually.


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Ner said: “This is an important period for the trade union movement in Scotland. With the upcoming general election, and with the results of the Brexit negotiations putting further strain on our already struggling economy and with racism and anti-immigration sentiment on the rise, there has never been a more important time for trade unions in Scotland to have a strong voice.

“Precarious and insecure work scars our economy. Poverty is rising and real wages are stagnating. The austerity agenda is failing in its own terms and does nothing but dampen our economy and starve our public services of the funding they so desperately need.

"Decent work, fair pay, fair taxation, better resourcing for public services and a proper industrial strategy, all need to be prioritised in the coming period. Without a focus on these issues, workers could well see their living standards fall.”

STUC General Secretary Grahame Smith said Ner's election was a source of "great pride", which "reflects the diversity and strength of activism within our movement.”

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