A message from the General Secretary Christmas 2020

To:  Each Member of Mandate Trade Union

Dear member

I don’t need to tell anybody that the last year has without doubt been the most challenging and difficult for you the members and your union since its inception. Clearly the main brunt of the impact arising from Covid-19 has been carried by our members particularly in the retail and bar sectors. Many have lost their jobs altogether with many more experiencing significant reductions in their weekly take home pay. Those who haven’t, because of the fact that they have been ever present on the frontline providing an essential public service from day one, have faced the threat on a constant basis, not knowing whether they might return home form their shift with a potentially deadly disease.

As a union staff, activists and members alike we had to respond and adapt to these rapidly changing circumstances. Clearly this has not been easy but I believe together we have risen well to the task. I wish that I could tell you that we are over the worst however I think we all know as we head into 2021 many more difficulties and necessary adjustments lie ahead. My commitment to you is regardless of the scale of the challenges facing us your union will continue to work tirelessly on your behalf to ensure the impact of future developments on our members will be minimised as much as possible. There are of course some reasons to be positive with the arrival of multiple vaccines however it is clear at this stage the lasting damage to traditional bricks and mortar retailing is likely to sustain long after the public health issues are dealt with.

Our great and proud union has never baulked in the face of a challenge and I have no doubt that we will not be found wanting as we seek to confront what is without doubt our biggest set of challenges yet. The important thing for the immediate future is that we seek to stay safe and enjoy the Christmas and New Year break which this year is needed and deserved more than ever. On a personal level I knew when I took on the role of General Secretary in late August of this year that the road ahead was not going to be an easy one to travel however I did so in the knowledge that the quality and commitment of our staff, activists and members afforded us the best chance of dealing with the many adversities facing us now and for the foreseeable future. So thanks for all the hard work and support and have a restful, safe and peaceful Christmas and New Year.

Gerry Light
General Secretary
Mandate Trade Union

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