Ground-breaking trade union film premieres online tonight

A groundbreaking film about rank and file trade union organising has its online premiere tonight.

After decades of being lost – film-makers Darren O’Grady and John McManus rediscovered the footage during an office move – the original tapes of Builders Crack: The Movie will be shown on Facebook at 7pm.

The film tells the story of the London Joint Sites Committee, a grassroots network of bricklayers, electricians, carpenters and painters who stood up for workers’ rights against gangster bosses in the building industry.

In 2020, every trade union in the UK uses film and social media as part of their campaigning, In the mid 90s, long before anyone had even heard of YouTube, it was virtually unheard of.

Sean Prophet, a pseudonymous member of the JSC, told “This film is a rare treat from the archive that documents an organic rank and file model of union organising that was taking place long before the TUC Organising Academy was set up. If you’re interested in labour movement history or union organising led by rank & file workers rather than paid employees of a union, this is for you.”

The film-makers and some of the activists in the film will hold an online Q & A after the showing, which organisers say is likely to spark a debate about how workers might need to respond to the massive attacks on jobs and wages heading our way.

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One thought on “Ground-breaking trade union film premieres online tonight

  1. Thanks for this story. I hope people involved in union organising, whether as front line reps or senior strategists can take some some inspiration from what rank & file construction workers have been doing for many decades.

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