General Federation of Trade Unions (United Kingdom)
|Full name||General Federation of Trade Unions|
Doug Nicholls, General Secretary |
Ben Marshall, president
|Office location||London, England|
The General Federation of Trade Unions (GFTU) is a national trade union centre in the United Kingdom. It has 35 affiliates with a membership of just over 214,000 and describes itself as the "federation for specialist unions".
In the 1890s, the development of socialist organisations and socialist thinking also found expression in the British trade union movement. Many of the new unions formed during that period were committed to the socialist transformation of society and were critical of the conservatism of the craft unions. The debate revolved around concept of building "one-big-union" which would have the resources to embark on a militant course of action and even change society. This thinking gained strength after the 1897 Engineering Employers Federation lockout which resulted in a defeat for engineering workers.
The view that it was necessary to develop a strong, centralised trade union organisation by forming a federation, which had been rejected only two years earlier, was now endorsed at the Trades Union Congress of September 1897. This resulted in the establishment of the General Federation of Trade Unions at a special Congress of the TUC in 1899, the principal objective of which was to set up a national organisation with a strike fund which could be drawn upon by affiliated trade unions.
The GFTU now concentrates on servicing the needs of specialist unions. It does this by providing courses, undertaking research for its affiliated Unions and administering a Pension Scheme for officials and staff of affiliated Unions. In keeping with its original objectives, the Federation pays dispute benefit in appropriate cases to affiliated Unions.
The Governing Body is the Biennial General Council Meeting, attended by delegates from affiliated Unions, at which policy and rule changes are debated and an Executive Committee of 14 members elected to meet on a monthly basis between Biennial General Council Meetings.
- Association of Educational Psychologists
- Bakers, Food and Allied Workers Union
- Broadcasting, Entertainment, Cinematograph and Theatre Union (BECTU)
- Coordinating Committee of International Staff Unions and Associations of the United Nations System
- Institute of Football Management and Administration
- League Managers Association
- Musicians' Union
- National Association of Colliery Overmen, Deputies and Shotfirers (NACODS)
- National Association of Probation Officers (NAPO)
- National Association of Stable Staff (NASS)
- National Union of Journalists (NUJ)
- Professional Cricketers' Association
- Society of Union Employees
- Social Workers' Union
- Transport Salaried Staffs Association (TSSA)
- GMB Manufacturing
- Prospect Connect Section
- Public and Commercial Services Union MOJ Group Excluding NOMS
- Unite the Union GFTU Sections
- 1899: Isaac Mitchell
- 1907: William A. Appleton
- 1938: George Bell
- 1953: Leslie Hodgson
- 1978: Peter Potts
- 1991: Michael Bradley
- 2010: Doug Nicholls
- List of trade unions
- List of trade unions in the United Kingdom
- List of federations of trade unions
- Trades Union Congress
- Scottish Trades Union Congress
- Irish Congress of Trade Unions
- Hyman, Richard (1971). The Workers' Union. Oxford, UK: Clarendon Press.
- GFTU official website
- Catalogue of the GFTU archives, held at the Modern Records Centre, University of Warwick