Community Union Activist from Glasgow Wins STUC One Workplace Equality Award 2011

April 18th 2011

The annual One Workplace Equality Award to recognise the role of Scottish trade union members in promoting equality in the workplace will be presented today (16.05 hrs Monday 18th April) at the STUC Annual Congress in Ayr.

This year’s recipient is Robert Mooney from Community Union. Robert is a Development Officer at the Royal Strathclyde Blindcraft Industries (RSBI) and has been an active trade unionist for 32 years during which time he has served as Shop Steward, Health and Safety Rep, Works Convener and Branch Secretary.

Throughout his involvement with the trade union movement, Robert has extensively campaigned for disability rights on behalf of his members and has worked closely with the STUC’s Equality Committees. As a registered blind person, Robert has successfully overcome his own disability and fight for the rights and benefits of his members and wider society. Working closely with his employers, he has been at the forefront of discussions on the new Public Sector Procurement Directive which reserves work for companies with over 50% disabled workers.

Within his union branch, Robert has actively encouraged young disabled people to take an active part of the trade union and civic society. He also works with youth organisations within the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) to encourage young blind people to take part in civic society through a presence at the visually impaired cross party group within the Scottish Parliament and by helping to set up a charity to address barriers to employment for blind people.

Grahame Smith STUC General Secretary commented:

“Robert’s outstanding commitment to the trade union movement, his tireless work to improve lives of disabled workers and achieve equality makes him a worthy recipient for this year’s One Workplace Equality Award.”

Robert said:

“I hope winning this Award will highlight why it is unacceptable, in the 21st century, that almost 50% of disabled people of working age are unemployed and with 80% of disabled who are employed working in public services. The proposed cuts and subsequent job losses will result in this figure rising substantially. It seems that disabled people are paying a high price for the mistakes of the banking sector and the rich.”

ENDS

For more information contact Zaffir Hakim, One Workplace Project Manager 0141 337 8100 or Ann Henderson, STUC Assistant Secretary 0141 337 8100

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