The Musicians’ Union had a very busy Labour Party Conference with a fantastic stand that was visited by a large number of MPs, as well as a successful event which highlighted the recent MU and Fabian Society report on Music Education. We also discussed our aims for instrumental tuition in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Meetings were held with MPs including Stephen Doughty, Alison McGovern and Thangam Debbonaire as well as prospective Labour candidates and David Lammy MP’s policy team. We also met with Labour leader Keir Starmer and Deputy Leader Angela Rayner, alongside other trade unions.
MU Head of Communications and Government Relations, Isabelle Gutierrez, attended all conference National Executive Committee meetings and was part of the stage panel for the debate on a green and digital future.
General Secretary Naomi Pohl spoke on a number of panels including events on the future of UK-EU relations, an arts and culture roundtable with Jeff Smith MP and a fringe on proportional representation. She also gave a rousing speech at the TULO rally alongside other Union General Secretaries.
On the floor of conference, MU delegates voted in favour of the successful ‘proportional representation’ motion and MU member Andi Hopgood made a very well received speech on stage about the need for music streaming reform.
Conservative Party round up
The MU also attended Conservative Party Conference in order to ask the Government to provide more funding for music education and to discuss music streaming issues.
General Secretary Naomi Pohl also spoke out strongly in favour of orchestral funding and improvements in terms and conditions for our members.
We had a small stand which was well visited and asked members to send postcards to their MP promoting the importance of music education.
We also hosted a very successful event with music by the Brodsky Quartet at which Naomi and the MU’s National Organiser for Education and Health & Wellbeing, Chris Walters, spoke about the need for increased funding for music education.