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21 January 1998

Union action for race equality
The Labour Research Department (LRD) is today publishing a trade unionists' guide to action for race equality.

Produced in collaboration with the TUC, Union Action for Race Equality - a negotiators' guide, looks at black workers' involvement and participation in unions and at the initiatives which unions are taking at a national level in relation to their black members. It also examines race equality in the workplace, in particular the importance of equal opportunities policies and monitoring, and sets out in detail key areas for collective bargaining. In addition it looks at the particular problems experienced by black women and at the law on race discrimination.

The guide is based on the results of two new LRD surveys. The first is a national survey which looks at black and ethnic minority participation in TUC-affiliated unions. The survey received responses from 34 national trade unions and focuses on national policies, monitoring, structures, organisation and activities.

The second survey reveals the extent of workplace bargaining for race equality and the issues which negotiators are most likely to take up and win agreement on. It also shows the degree to which the number of black employees in the workforce and the proportion of black union representatives significantly influences the likelihood of agreements being secured. This survey is based on replies from 168 workplaces representing over 100,000 workers with more than 4,000 union representatives, 4% of whom were black.

Union Action for Race Equality - a negotiators' guide will be an invaluable tool for trade unionists bargaining for race equality in the workplace and seeking to implement equal opportunities within their union.

Notes to editors

Union Action for Race Equality is published by the Labour Research Department, 78 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8HF, price ?3.20 or ?10 for non-labour movement bodies.
LRD Booklets are also available on subscription at an annual cost of ?24.50 (?62.85 for non-labour movement bodies). LRD publishes 11 booklets a year.
The Labour Research Department is an independent trade union and labour movement organisation founded 83 years ago. More than 2,000 trade union organisations, including 54 national unions, representing 99% of total TUC membership are affiliated.
For further information contact Sonia McKay on 0171 928 3649.

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