Professor Gregor Gall comments on the history of unions in the UK

Visiting professor of industrial relations, Gregor Gall comments on the history of unions in the UK.

Professor Gregor Gall has published a comment piece in The National, titled ‘Why UK unions have transformed to make a militant shift’.

In the article, Professor Gall highlights the evolution that many unions have gone through:

Indeed, most [unions] called themselves associations or societies and not unions. Some of them even gained royal charters. Gradually, over time, they became bona fide unions, being independent of employers, government or state in terms of ideology, organisation and resources. 

He concludes the article by looking at the specific example of the Royal College of Nurses (RCN), and the changes it has gone through over the years as it prepares to take its first-ever Britain-wide strike action.

The RCN now looks to be following in the Educational Institute of Scotland’s footsteps, indicating such organisations have transmogrified from having a moderate and limited remit to become unions that are far more militant than anyone could have thought they ever would be.

Read the full article