The GMB union conference last week saw Paul Kenny, previously London regional secretary, take over as acting general secretary for the next year.
The previous incumbent, Kevin Curran, resigned after an investigation was launched into allegations over his election two years ago.
Paul Kenny signalled a change in direction for the union by organising a demonstration during conference week against de-recognition of the union by the AA.
Discussion about potential mergers with the T&G or Amicus was limited to a brief statement. The GMB has stabilised its finances and activists expect that lay member and regional control will remain, so it is doubtful if any merger will happen quickly.
There was an increase over previous years in support for resolutions critical of New Labour. However, the pensions debate was muted and only a few delegates were prepared to speak out against the GMB’s failure to ballot its local government workers over the issue earlier this year.
Delegates also voted unanimously for a return to an annual conference, gave support to the Make Poverty History campaign and reconfirmed support for the Stop the War Coalition.
But the union is still messing about with the donation to the coalition, which was first promised to two years ago.