Town hosts union’s 70th conference

General Secretary John Hannett at a previous Usdaw conference in Blackpool
General Secretary John Hannett at a previous Usdaw conference in Blackpool
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Hundreds of delegates are heading to Blackpool for the annual conference of shopworkers union Usdaw which is being held at the Winter Gardens.

More than 1,300 people are expected to attend the event which is the 70th annual conference, starting tomorrow and lasting until Wednesday.

This year Usdaw is also celebrating its 125th anniversary.

Key issues which will be up for debate include rights at work, pay and conditions, working carers under pressure, equalities and the EU referendum.

Usdaw general secretary John Hannett said: “Our annual delegate meeting is effectively the union’s parliament and provides lay-members with the opportunity to raise their issues of concern and make our policy.

“This year we have a packed agenda and it is clear from the issues raised that members are very concerned about a Conservative government continually hitting the lowest paid workers the hardest.

“Incomes have been under attack with cuts in tax credits and the threat of universal credit is a ticking time bomb for any working families.

“Our members are severely impacted by cuts in services they rely on and mounting pressure on the NHS impacts on everyone.

“While we reflect on a 125 year history we are also looking to the future. Issues that affect young workers will feature highly, including under-25s being excluded from the National Living Wage.”