Interview with Nick Bramley on ETF 2013 Congress

31 May 2013

Nick Bramley (Nautilus International), President of the ETF Inland Waterways Section was interviewed today by Myriam Chaffart, ETF Political Secretary, about his impressions on the first ETF 2013 Congress day.

What will you remember of the first Congress day?

The youth presentation was good. We have always known that young workers are at congress, but they never appeared as a tangible block like yesterday. Paddy Crumlin’s speech was also outstanding. It was rhetorically very good, very emotional, the ITF President is a natural speaker. And Bob Crow’s speech was strong because he clearly said to ETUC General Secretary Bernadette Ségol that the ETUC’s views are wrong.

I also appreciate the facilities in this hotel. The meeting room is good, the acoustic, the organisation around it. Of all past ETF congresses, this is without a doubt the best congress room. The hotel is also big so we are all at the same place and you can keep meeting people. Except for the IT and translation breakdown, but it gave us a good laugh.

Which part of the Congress Main Motion is in your opinion the most important? 

Our main priority is organising. Getting membership, getting people active, moving the agenda away from being just a piece of paper. It’s not only the ETF secretariat who has to do this, but all of us, make unions more active, more present more noticeable.

What is the next challenge for your sector? 

Tomorrow our Section will submit an emergency resolution on the blockade in social dialogue. Currently we have a lot of work on certification and training. It aims to make the profession more attractive for younger people. And building up membership also stays an important challenge, we have problems with recruiting and we need presence aside of the rivers and the canal.