GMB Magazine GMB25 Fusion Summer 2016 - Page 28

REGIONAL UPDATE from GMB All the news End of an ERA Liverpool loses council and union stalwarts Bobby Daniels and Arthur Moss as they retire E nd of an era is a phrase often overused and overstated. However, for GMB’s Liverpool City Council members the retirement of convenors Arthur Moss and Bobby Daniels (left) certainly is a landmark moment, and they will both be missed very much. Between them they have clocked up well in excess of 70 years representing GMB members and have achieved major successes in pay and equalities for council staff. Working for the council during the highs and the lows of the 80s, it was a time when the Region felt the full force of the Thatcher-induced recession and the council workforce fell from a peak of 33,000 to just over 11,000 now. DYNAMIC DUO In recent years Bobby and Arthur have worked together out of Brougham Terrace, representing members in education, leisure and social services. They formed a formidable partnership and gained the respect and admiration of everyone they encountered. Arthur said: “They may not have always liked what we had to say, but they always knew we spoke from the heart with honesty and represented the views of the people we were standing up for.” Everton fan Arthur began his working life as a conductor on LCC buses in the mid-60s and quickly became involved with GMB. He describes himself in those days as very much a hardliner, but also believed then as now in fairness and equality for all. After becoming a bus driver, Arthur later moved to the council’s social service buses where he became even more involved in the union as a branch secretary and convenor. He even stood against John Edmunds for election as General Secretary in the 90s, promising a pint for all those who voted for him. He wasn’t left out of pocket. Liverpool fan Bobby worked as a lorry driver and was active in his local area ward. He helped to organise the occupation of a school in Croxteth, which had been earmarked for closure, and through the actions of Bobby and other concerned parents the school remained open. After this success, Bobby soon got involved in union activity. He worked for the council as cover in a Netherley school and then at Croxteth Comp, and became branch secretary and convenor in education. LASTING LEGACY Bobby and Arthur have represented thousands of individual members in disciplinary and grievance matters, and were instrumental in negotiating numerous deals for the workforce. They have taken great pride in championing low-paid council workers, were key in the introduction of the council’s job evaluation scheme, and helped win plenty of equal pay claims for members. Although Bobby and Arthur are retiring as council employees and GMB convenors, they plan to continue with their branch activities and work on the Regional Council. Their retirement is a loss for Liverpool City Council members, but is definitely a gain for GMB. “We spoke from the heart with honesty…” 28 FUSION – GMB North West and Irish GMB25.Fusion_28_29.indd 28 04/06/2016 12:29