Congress of Irish Unions

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The Congress of Irish Unions was a confederation of trade unions in Ireland.

History[edit]

Congress was one of the two governing bodies that emerged after the split in the Irish trade union body the Irish Trades Union Congress in 1945. The split developed under pressure from an anticipated fresh labour-state relationship, and alleged 'British domination in ITUC'. The CIU consisted entirely of Irish-based unions, and retained 77,500 workers, including the members of the Irish Transport and General Workers' Union. The aim of the CIU was to create a trade union movement in Ireland which was Irish-based and nationalistic in outlook, in contrast to the more internationalist and socialist ITUC which had 146,000 members. The Government, contrary to expectation, did not legislate against the British unions, and from 1953 encouraged a détente between the two factions.[1] The confederations amalgamated in 1959, becoming the Irish Congress of Trade Unions .

Affiliates[edit]

On formation, the following unions affiliated to the Congress:[2]

Building Workers' Trade Union
Dublin Typographical Provident Society
Electrical Trades Union (Ireland)
Electrotypers' and Stereotypers' Society
Irish Bookbinders' and Allied Trades Union
Irish Engineering Industrial Union
Irish National Union of Vintners', Grocers' and Allied Trade Assistants
Irish Seamen and Port Workers' Union
Irish Society of Woodcutting Machinists
Irish Transport and General Workers' Union
Irish Union of Distributive Workers and Clerks
Operative Plasterers' Trade Society
United Ship and House Painters' and Decorators' Trade Union

By 1954, the following unions held membership:[3]

Union Membership
Automobile Drivers' and Automobile Mechanics' Union 1,500
Building Workers' Trade Union 1,700
Dublin Typographical Provident Society 1,267
Electrical Trades Union (Ireland) 2,500
Electrotypers' and Stereotypers' Society 83
Guild of Irish Journalists 46
Irish Actors' Equity Association 210
Irish Bookbinders' and Allied Trades Union 1,075
Irish Engineering, Industrial and Electrical Trade Union 1,978
Irish Engineering and Foundry Union 2,960
Irish National Union of Vintners', Grocers' and Allied Trades' Assistants 3,844
Irish National Union of Woodworkers 950
Irish Seamen's and Port Workers' Union 2,950
Irish Society of Woodcutting Machinists 750
Irish Sub-Postmasters' Union 1,500
Irish Transport and General Workers' Union 148,442
Irish Union of Distributive Workers and Clerks 14,697
National Union of Sheet Metal Workers and Gas Meter Makers of Ireland 300
Operative Plasterers' Trade Society 1,300
Racecourse Bookmakers' Assistants' Association 200
Regular Dublin Coopers' Society 254
United House and Ship Painters' and Decorators' Trade Union of Ireland 423

Secretaries[edit]

1945: Cathal O'Shannon
1946: Leo Crawford

Presidents[edit]

Year President Union
1945–46 Gerard Owens Electrical Trades Union (Ireland)
1947 Thomas Kennedy Irish Transport and General Workers Union
1948 W. J. Whelan Dublin Typographical Provident Society
1949 Owen Hynes Building Workers' Trade Union
1950 Michael Colgan Irish Bookbinders' and Allied Trades Union
1951 John Conroy Irish Transport and General Workers Union
1952 Walter Beirne Irish National Union of Vintners', Grocers' and Allied Trade Assistants
1953 William McMullen Irish Transport and General Workers Union
1954 Gerald Doyle Operative Plasterers' Trade Society
1955 John O'Brien Irish Engineering, Industrial and Electrical Trade Union
1956 Michael Mervyn Electrical Trades Union (Ireland)
1957 Laurence Hudson United House and Ships Painters' and Decorators' Trade Union of Ireland
1958–59 Terence Farrell Irish Bookbinders' and Allied Trades Union

Source: Donal Nevin et al., Trade Union Century, pp. 438–439

References[edit]

  1. ^ Policy concertation and social partnership in Western Europe Stefan Berger, Hugh Compston 2002 ISBN 978-1-57181-494-4
  2. ^ Fergus A. D'Arcy and Ken Hannigan, Workers in Union, p.212
  3. ^ McCarthy, Charles (1977). Trade Union in Ireland 1894–1960. Dublin: Institute of Public Administration. p. 615. ISBN 0902173790.

Sources[edit]

From the EMIRE database, which is the online version of the European Employment and Industrial Relations Glossaries