Report from Sue Tibbles, SERTUC delegate, on CND Conference 2007.
This year's Annual CND Conference took place at City Hall, London, on Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th October.Debate took place in the Council Chamber on motions and several fringe meetings and workshops took place in the smaller meeting rooms during the weekend. The meeting rooms were rather overheated and airless unfortunately.
I managed to hear the discussion around the proposal for a US radar in the Czech Republic, and also the discussion on trade unions and CND.The meeting about trade union involvement raised the issue that many trade union branches and even some of the smaller unions have so many worthy organisations asking for funding all the time that it is not that easy to get financial support these days for CND.
Policies for the next year were agreed after motions were carried as follows:
-campaigning against Trident replacement, plus supporting a Nuclear Weapons Convention in 2008 and working more closely with Scottish CND.
-building the European campaign against US missile defence-pledging to focus on work at Aldermaston AWE
-continuing to campaign against nuclear power-continuing to campaign about issues concerning nuclear weapons convoys, depleted uranium and the plight of Mordechai Vanunu
Officers endorsed: Chair: Kate Hudson Vice Chairs: Jeremy Corbyn MP; Dave Webb; Sophie Bolt Treasurer: Linda Hugl.
15 directly elected National Council members were:Pat Arrowsmith, Jenny Clegg, Tom Cuthbert, Sue Davis, Joan Horrocks, Peter Leary, Gawain Little, Caroline Lucas, Alice Mahon, Pat Sanchez, Tom Shelton, Tony Staunton, Rae Street, Carol Turner, Hannah Tweddle.
I aim to strengthen the link with the National Council in future as I am already in contact with Caroline Lucas, Tony Staunton and Gawain Little. Gawain will be an NUT delegate to Oxford & District Trades Union Council next year.
Guest speakers were Dr Alan Mackinnon, Chair of Scottish CND who spoke on political campaign successes in Scotland.Arielle Denis, Co-Chair of French peace group Le Mouvement de la Paix, spoke about nuclear challenges facing the world today.
Workshops were open to the wider public. Several specialist speakers addressed the conference including the young representative from the Czech Peace Movement speaking on US proposals to site a X Band Radar at Brdy, Czech Republic. The Czech people are strongly opposed to the site and approximately 80 mayors have formed the Mayors’ League against the radar.An action emanating from this presentation is to lobby MPs to sign Early Day Motion 65 calling for a democratic debate in UK parliament on the issue of US Missile Defence.
There was a drinks reception on the Saturday evening in London’s Living Room at the top of City Hall, which is always an opportunity to go outside for fresh air and to look at the amazing view
Other items to note for next year’s 50th anniversary of CND:
A Global Summit for a Nuclear Weapon-Free World is being held in London on 16th and 17th February 2008. Delegates from groups and organisations are welcome to attend by contacting CND National Office. There is to be a reception on the Saturday evening of this conference honouring early members.2008 will be the 50th anniversary of CND and at Easter the 50th anniversary of the first Aldermaston march will be marked by meeting there on Easter Monday 24 March, 12 noon.
Also a History of CND exhibition at London School of Economics displaying archive stills of CND's history to take place with an opportunity for the exhibition to go to other parts of the country if organisations have facilities available.
CND National Office, England Contact : Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, 162 Holloway Road, London N7 8DQ*Tel:* 020 7700 2393*Fax:* 020 7700 2357a>>