Discussion Papers

Labour Today ProgramUS Labour Today – A working class program for now and the future

We believe that combining the fight for immediate working class gains, with a vision to fight for far more radical gains that lead toward a worker takeover of society (what we call class oriented socialism), is the only way to keep workers from falling into the bosses’ traps. And, it answers the workers’ deep understanding that their bosses don’t deserve any respect.

Here is the Labor Today Program for now and the future that adheres to our great working class tradition in the United States.

Labour Today Program

Home Sweet Home - Emergency Housing PlanHome Sweet Home – Emergency Housing Plan

The current housing crisis in Ireland did not happen by accident. It is the result of failed polices by successive governments who have relied almost entirely on the private sector to provide housing to residents in Ireland. This policy has resulted in devastation for hundreds of thousands of families across the state.

Home Sweet Home is a campaign of housing activists, artists and trade unionists who believe the State cannot abdicate their housing responsibilities to the private sector any longer, and must now strongly intervene in housing to ensure everyone has a place to call home.

Housing is not a ‘market’. It is a basic human right.

Home Sweet Home - Emergency Housing Plan

TULF submission to the Right2WaterTULF’s Submission to the Right2Water Policy Document

This is the TULF submission to the Right2Water process of developing a progressive political programme. The fact that five unions have been central to the biggest mass mobilisation and social movement in decades is in itself a progressive turn, constituting an important step forward for the trade union movement and for workers more generally.

It is crucial to the future of the union movement, and to working people generally, that we in the movement develop a coherent and concrete programme, with workers and communities, that challenges the power of capital and big business in Ireland.

TULF's submission to the Right2Water Policy Document

Reviving the Strike - Joe BurnsReviving the strike

A book by Joe Burns (union lawyer and negotiator in the US) which argues the movement needs to return to the strike as the key part of union revival to pull the movement out of the crisis of declining membership and power and our class out of poverty and desperation. A must read for union and left activists.

Reviving the strike

European Regional Office of the WFTUTTIP

The European Regional Office of the WFTU published it’s announcement denouncing the TTIP and its impact on the lives of workers.

European Regional Office of the WFTU

What is workers' education?What is workers’ education?

A talk given by Dr Stevie Nolan of Trademark for the TULF

“Trade Unions are the schools of socialism. It is in trade unions that workers educate themselves and become socialists, because under their very eyes the every day struggle with capital is taking place.” — Karl Marx

What is workers' education?

Public Enterprise versus Private InefficiencyPublic Enterprise versus Private Inefficiency

A briefing document for union activists

The Trade Union Left Forum has put this brief guide together for union activists to use in combating commonly used arguments in favour of privatisation and against public ownership. There is mounting evidence of the value of public-sector investment, compared with the inefficiency and waste of private-led investment; yet this is silenced by the privately owned media, just as they call into question the right of communities to peacefully resist the imposition Irish Water.

Public Enterprise versus Private Inefficiency

Everything a trade unionist should know about TTIPEverything a Trade Unionist should know about TTIP

Stop the TIPP!

How an EU-US trade and investment treaty threatens democracy, would attack workers’ rights, erode social standards and environmental regulations, dilute food safety rules, undermine regulations on the use of toxic chemicals, rubbish digital privacy laws, and strangle developing economies.

Everything a trade unionist should know about TTIP
DOWNLOAD FACT SHEET

Transforming Your CareTransforming Your Care

Privatising your Health Service.

In May 2013 a health story began to dominate the local media. It related to the threatened closure of a number of residential care homes for the elderly. Individual Health Trusts reacted to public opposition to this possibility by stating they were merely carrying out policy as directed within an overall health strategy that is referred to as Transforming Your Care (TYC).

Transforming Your Care

Ireland needs a wage increaseIreland needs a wage increase

There is currently a debate over the role of wages in the Irish economy.

Those who claim that wages are too high and that wage increases will erode competitiveness rarely put forward any evidence to substantiate their position.

Ireland needs a wage increase

Save Our ForestsSave Our Forests

The social, economic and environmental case against selling Coillte assets.

Ireland is set to become the first country in Europe to give up its public forest estate. This publication describes the disastrous economic, environmental and social impact this could have on our nation.

Save Our Forests

Trade Union Left Forum Pamphlet Vol 1 Issue 3James Connolly and the politics of trade union struggle – Vol 1 Issue 3

To mark the one hundredth anniversary of the 1913 lockout the Trade Union Left Forum has chosen to reprint a number of James Connolly’s important articles on the politics of trade union organisation and struggle.

Trade Union Left Forum Pamphlet Vol 1 Issue 3

The Daylight Robbery of Privatisation- Private Profit from Public LossThe Daylight Robbery of Privatisation – Private Profit from Public Loss

It has been argued that “privatisation comes in three sizes… straight sell-off of public assets… contracting out to private companies for profit [and] two-step privatisation ‘by stealth’, where it is represented
as an unintended consequence”.

The Daylight Robbery of Privatisation- Private Profit from Public Loss

Future Positive - Trade Unions and the Common GoodFuture Positive – Trade Unions and the Common Good

“Future Positive – Trade Unions and the Common Good” is an analysis of the conditions that affect trade union organisation both nationally and internationally and sets out the challenges that face unions in Ireland.

Download Future Positive - Trade Unions and the Common Good

Saving Jobs, Promoting Democracy – Worker Cooperative ConversionsSaving Jobs, Promoting Democracy – Worker Cooperative Conversions

In declaring 2012 the International Year of Cooperatives, the United Na4ons has drawn attention to a form of social organisation which plays a major role in economies across the globe. Cooperatives employ over 100 million people and have over a billion members worldwide, they are not traded on the stock market and so never make the business news, they are socially responsible, sustainable and are democra4cally controlled by their members.

Download Saving Jobs, Promoting Democracy – Worker Cooperative Conversions

Trade Union Left Forum Pamphlet Vol 1 Issue 2James Connolly and the politics of trade union struggle – Vol 1 Issue 2

To mark the one hundredth anniversary of the 1913 lockout the Trade Union Left Forum has chosen to reprint a number of James Connolly’s important articles on the politics of trade union organisation and struggle.

Download Trade Union Left Forum Pamphlet Vol 1 Issue 2

Trade Union Left Forum PamphletJames Connolly and the politics of trade union struggle – Vol 1 Issue 1

To mark the one hundredth anniversary of the 1913 lockout the Trade Union Left Forum has chosen to reprint a number of James Connolly’s important articles on the politics of trade union organisation and struggle.

Download Trade Union Left Forum Pamphlet

Privatisation - Robbing The People’s WealthPrivatisation – Robbing The People’s Wealth

This pamphlet on the politics of privatisation is the outcome of a seminar organised by the Trade Union Left Forum and a case study on the ESB and the effect of government policies over the last decade or more.

Download Privatisation Pamphlet

Decent Work? The Impact Of The Recession On Low Paid WorkersDecent Work? The Impact Of The Recession On Low Paid Workers

A Report For Mandate Trade Union
Research: Camille Loftus
Survey: Behaviour & Attitudes

Download Decent Work? - The Impact of The Recession on Low Paid Workers

An asset to use not stripAn asset to use not strip

The size of the Public Sector in Northern Ireland

The purpose of this paper is to discuss this fact within the debate on the size of the public sector in Northern Ireland. It examines long-standing and more recent criticisms of the public/private sector ‘balance’, explores the validity of the pro-market solutions that follow such critiques and makes the case for the benefit to society of public services funded by and founded on a properly progressive tax base.

Download An asset to use not strip

Behind the MaskBehind the Mask

The Taxpayers’ Alliance & the War on Public Provision

This paper examines: the emergence of the TPA; the political climate in which they operate; the purpose of their media message; the organisations/individuals that support them within the UK; those internationally with whom they align themselves; the transparency of their funding and the general contribution they and similar think tanks make in the assault on the public sector.

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The Future of the Irish Water SectorThe Future of the Irish Water Sector

The failure to adequately invest in water services is evidenced by the failure to put in place a standby supply of water for the most densely populated areas.

Download The Future of the Irish Water Sector

Learning from the Eircom debacleLearning from the Eircom debacle

“The privatisation of Eircom in 1999 must rank as the biggest single economic mistake made by an Irish Government – until the disastrous blanket bank guarantee of September, 2008.”

Download Learning from the Eircom debacle

Public Sector Pensions - Myths & FactsPublic Sector Pensions – Myths & Facts

This paper outlines how pensions and occupational public sector pensions in particular, a necessary and socially desirable provision, have been put ‘in the dock’. It then examines the validity of the ‘charge sheet’ and concludes by arguing that the debate needs to return to how all citizens – not ‘consumers’ or nominal members of an imagined PLC – are provided for in retirement.

Download Public Sector Pensions - Myths & Facts

A Call to ActionA Call to Action

Report of the Commission on the Irish Trade Union Movement

At the Congress Biennial Delegate Conference in July 2009, a motion was passed calling for a Commission to be established to review trade union organisation in Ireland, including structures and procedures, with the objective of optimising effectiveness through co-ordination of resources in the best interests of working people and their families. The Commission was established in April 2010. The members of the Commission are Mr David Begg, Mr Jack O Connor, Mr Peter McLoone, Mr Eugene McGlone, Ms Patricia McKeown, Ms Avril Hall-Callaghan, Mr Philip Bowyer and Mr Philip Jennings. Mr Liam Berney from the Congress Secretariat acted as Secretary to the Commission.

Download A Call to Action

Optimising Ireland’s Oil and Gas ResourcesOptimising Ireland’s Oil and Gas Resources

Report of the SIPTU Oil & Gas Review Group

The Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources (DCENR) estimates a total reserve potential in the order of 10 billion barrels of oil equivalent (bboe) beneath the seabed off the west coast of Ireland. On the basis of geological studies, seismic surveys and drilling results these estimated reserves divide approximately into 6.5 billion barrels of oil and 20 trillion cubic feet of gas. This quantity of estimated reserves, if found and exploited, would be sufficient to meet Ireland’s demand for hydrocarbons for over 100 years, based on current usage.

Download Optimising Ireland’s Oil and Gas Resources