A New Lucas Plan for post-Covid socially useful jobs?
May 13 2020, 7pm- 8.30 pm online
The public health crisis caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has put into sharp focus the precarious nature of work and human lives upon which our neoliberal capitalist economies thrive. On the other hand, it has shown what type of work is essential to society such as work in health and social care, public transport and other public services, and in the food supply chain
To ensure capital survives, the government has found a ‘magic money tree’ to stimulate the economy. Companies in the aerospace and defence sector are being called upon to repurpose their production lines for socially needed products such as ventilators or PPE. Whilst workers in some industries are already calling for conversion of their companies to produce socially useful products.
In a few weeks, many things we were told were not possible, have become just that – possible. Many, even in the mainstream, say there will be no return to ‘normal’ after the pandemic is dealt with. We believe more radical changes are needed, and that socially useful production is the key idea for the future.
This webinar will discuss how do we can learn from the Covid crisis to create workers and community plans for social and ecologically useful production as a way to address the pre-existing multiple crises of militarisation, climate change, and robotisation.
Phil Asquith – former Lucas Aerospace Shop Stewards Combine member.
Hilary Wainwright – founding editor Red Pepper, co-author, with Dave Elliott of ‘The Lucas Plan: a new trade unionism in the making’, fellow of the Transnational Institute’.
Representatives from Green Jobs Oshawa in Canada on their call to repurpose the former General Motors car plant to a public manufacturing facility
For more information contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
A New Lucas Plan – an Idea Whose Time Has Come?
St Peter’s Church, St Peter’s Street, Derby, 1-5pm Saturday 24th Nov 2018
Today the world is facing multiple political, economic and environmental crises, but our political system seems to have no answer beyond business as usual. So it’s clear that a new vision for the future will have come from grassroots movements, including the left, the environmental movement and the peace movement.
The idea of a ‘New Lucas Plan’ as one possible way forward came from a conference on the 40th anniversary of the Lucas Plan. The Lucas Plan of the 1970s was a celebrated attempt by workers at the arms related company, Lucas Aerospace, to develop a plan for conversion of the company to the production of socially useful products. Facing the threat of unemployment caused by new technology and recession, the workers collected 150 ideas from the shop floor for alternative, socially useful products that could be produced using their skills and technology.
The idea for a ‘New Lucas Plan’ is to develop plans for a new and democratically controlled economy, based on the Lucas Aerospace workers’ idea of socially useful production. The transition to a new sustainable and socially just economy will involve conversion of harmful industries in a way that must create socially useful livelihoods for workers. Rather than seeking to develop such a plan ourselves, through these events we want to engage with the thinking of activists in different social movements, in order to collectively develop our thinking. This is consistent with the Lucas Aerospace workers’ bottom-up approach, and the events will aim to be as participatory as possible.
One aim of the event will be to catalyse the creation of new links between different movements, with the possible aim of developing a New Lucas Plan for the Derby area.
Speakers will include members of the Lucas Aerospace Combine, members of the New Lucas Plan working groups and representatives of local organisations. There will be a screening of a short version of THE PLAN, a new film about the Lucas Plan.
The event will be free, with donations to cover room costs. For more information email email@example.com.
The venue is wheelchair accessible, with disabled toilets and a lift.
Saturday 23 June, 10am- 4pm, Dublin
Just Transition, Climate Jobs: Liberty Hall, Dublin,
Jonathan Essex and Peter Sims are speaking at this conference, organised by Green Foundation Ireland (GFI), the SIPTU and Dublin Council of Trade Unions. It is part of a Green European Foundation project on climate jobs which is being co-ordinated by Green House. Green House is currently working with GFI on estimating the numbers of jobs that would be created by a transition to a zero-carbon economy in each region of Ireland and the results of that work will be presented at the conference.
More information will be available shortly on the Green Foundation Ireland website
Friday 29th June 2018. Blackpool
Climate Jobs & Anti-Fracking Campaign workshop at Preston New Road fracking protest site
Speaker Jonathan Essex, Green Party/New Lucas Plan
Time to be confirmed
Saturday 21st July 2018 in Derby
New Lucas Plan Strategy Day; all day event
Venue to be confirmed
Tuesday 22nd May. Bristol
Screening of the film ‘The Plan’. By Bristol Radical History Group & Bristol North West Labour Party
Hilary Wainwright will also be introducing her new book; ‘A New Politics from the Left’.
Time; 7.30 pm, BAWA Events Centre, 589 Southmead Road, Bristol B534 7RG
April 29 in Manchester; talk by Sam Mason of New Lucas Plan working group at Jobs Not Bombs – An industrial strategy for peace, hosted by Manchester CND
March 10: workshop at Jobs & Climate: Planning for a Future that Doesn’t Cost the Earth
Organised by Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union group
Friday 23rd February 7.00pm at the Hive, Worcester. Screening of The Plan
A screening of Steve Sprung’s film The Plan about the Lucas Plan, with a talk by John Routley, one of the members of the Lucas Aerospace Combine.
New Lucas Plan December 2017 update
With some delays, due to the political situation and a snap election, we held a strategy day of discussion with over twenty participants on 1st July to develop a plan to take forward the outcomes of the conference. From this we have launched the New Lucas Plan project to take forward the pioneering ideas of the Lucas Plan that are as much – if not more – needed today as they were in the 1970’s.
Four working groups arising out of the conference have been meeting since the beginning of the year to take forward the different strands of the conference which now form part of the new project. These are:
- Arms Conversion/Defence Diversification
- Just Transition
- Local Planning
An overarching strategy paper Another Economy is Possible linking the four groups has been developed. The main aim is to develop the ideas of and build support for socially useful production, popular planning for social need and democratic control of technology, by expanding our networks in the trade union, green/alternative economics and cooperative movements. We are aiming to develop local, regional and national policies and plans e.g. for industrial strategy, through bottom-up democratic processes and to make arms conversion/defence diversification and Just Transition government policy. Copies of the strategy and information on the work of the New Lucas Plan, including the working groups, can be obtained by contacting Dave King firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please get involved! The New Lucas Plan is about building a movement from below. If you are not already involved in a working group or on the main discussion list and would like to be, please contact Dave King. If you would like anyone from the New Lucas Plan project to speak at a meeting you are organising, or would like copies of our new flyer to distribute, please get in touch.
We organised fringe meetings at the TUC Congress and the Anarchist Bookfair and had input into green jobs events at the Green Party and in Aberdeen. There have been two screenings of The Plan at the Mayday Rooms in London. Steve Sprung, the film maker, is still working on final edits and issues of distribution, but we hope to be able to say more on this early in the New Year
Shadow Defence Diversification Agency – TUC Congress motion
At TUC Congress in September, a motion calling for a shadow Defence Diversification Agency to be set up was passed, significantly with support of the Unite union. This is an important step. A lot of people worked to achieve this, but major credit should go to Newcastle TUC which drove the motion through the Northern Area TUC and the National Trades Councils Congress, before being selected for debate at the national TUC. Full details of the text can be seen on the Campaign against the Arms Trade website.
Work is currently underway to redesign the website to reflect the ongoing project. This will retain links to Lucas Plan archive material (which is currently being digitised) and the conference, but will be more focused on the new project working groups, and ways to get involved. We’ll send another email on this once it’s all live. We will shortly publish a pamphlet on the Lucas Plan and the themes of the current project.