GMB Shout! London
CHAIR: Sandie Maile
I have worked in the trade union movement all my working life, starting as a secretary at the GMB southern region - in fact, it was the General & Municipal Workers Union in those days!
I now work for another trade union as Equality Officer and my main area of responsibility is to provide advice and guidance to full-time officers and representatives on the range of equalities and work-life balance issues. As part of my role, I facilitate the union’s equality networks and oversee training on equalities issues, including on harassment and bullying.
I have also been a GMB member all my working life and have been active as a lay rep in my previous workplaces.
Well, that’s a little potted history of my working life! I have been passionate about promoting equality for all both throughout my life. I am currently Chair of GMB Shout! in the London Region and feel privileged to have been in this role for 10 years, since its very inception. I am also on the committee of the newly formed GMB Sisters self-organised group in the London region. It is wonderful that London region is leading the way in all of our self-organised groups promoting equality.
Every July I participate in the Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival which celebrates trade unionism in the little Dorset village where six farmworkers were arrested for forming a trade union and transported to Australia in 1834. The Festival is an opportunity for us to remember and celebrate through music, debates and the traditional processions through the village showcasing all the colourful trade union banners.
I am very keen that GMB should be leading on equality within the trade union movement and within society generally, and am proud to have done my part (no matter how small) in ensuring that equality is now one of the leading values of our union.
VICE-CHAIR: Brian Shaw
I am the current Vice Chair of GMB Shout! London Region having been involved in the group since it's formation in 2004. I am, as well, the Chair of GMB London Regions Equality Forum having been elected by the regional equality conference to that post as well as to the National Equality Forum which I am also proud to chair. I have been involved campaigning and organising around equality in the union movement since the early 1990's. I was involved in the consultation over the sexual orientation regulations 2003 and the subsequent legal challenge with my then Union. In my day job I work for the PCS union as an industrial officer dealing with a number of employers and PCS members. As an out gay man I know all too well the issues that lgbt people face in wider society, having faced some of then during my life. It is important that as a trade union we reach out to all lgbt people and encourage their involvement in the work of the group as well as see a change in the GMB to ensure workplaces are lgbt friendly.
So, you may want to consider helping out at Pride, writing to politicians on issues or coming on the committee. My main focus as part of Shout! in the coming 12 months is to lead our involvement in Pride, look to develop a team that will help at such events. We all have talents and they can be utilised in the GMB to deliver change for lgbt people.
SECRETARY: Carl Banks
I’m Carl and I’m the elected secretary of GMB Shout! London. I am also a member of GMB London Regional Equality Forum and the LGBT rep on GMB's National Equality Forum. Since Shout's creation in 2004, I’ve been an active committee member of GMB Shout! in one role or another.
Formerly, I worked in another trade union as the Equality, Health and Safety Officer. Part of my responsibility there was working closely with the union’s LGBT national committee and network to promote and advance equality and campaigns in the workplace and wider.
Why and how did I get involved in GMB and Shout? Well, even before working age I had a passion for fairness, peace and for environmental issues. I think growing up in Herefordshire with a family who adore nature and who avidly watched Sir David Attenborough’s ground-breaking and mesmerising documentaries, all helped to forge this empathy with others who share our world.
So when I joined the civil service, it was natural for me to join and get involved in the trade union there. Through this and a growing interest in equalities I came to recognise the urgent need to stand up for myself and others, knowing that our equal, civil and human rights are not given to us on a plate and that we have to campaign for, protect our rights and inform ourselves of those.
I am very proud of what we, as GMB Shout! and as the trade union movement, are doing to create fairer, equal and safe workplaces and communities. The GMB Shout! network is actively developing in other parts of the UK as well as in London region. I believe that together, as a sustainable, officially recognised national GMB Shout! network, we can better support our LGBT members and allies, help foster greater understanding between diverse groups inside and outside of our workplaces and build respect for each others’ diversities and communities. We can all, very easily, play a small or large role in making that happen today.
TREASURER: Nicholas John Humble
Hello, my name is Nick, I have been a member of GMB since 2000, confident in the knowledge that my back was covered by an established, profesional Union.
I joined Shout! in 2009 being elected to the comittee 2 years later. I am actively involved in events such as London Pride & the LGBT History Month's & enjoy working with such dedicated people on Shout!
I am currently a Catering Manager working at Canary Wharf. I have been in catering all my working life (a number of years) & I loves it!
COMMITTEE MEMBER: Phyll Opoku-Gyimah
Phyll Opoku-Gyimah, I’m elected member to the GMB Shout Committee.
I work for PCS as the Head of Campaigns and have always been very active within the trade union, holding positions and I am also elected onto the TUC LGBT Committee and TUC Race Relations Committee. I am commitment to workplace equality and social justice where I actively campaign & organise within my community.
I am the Co-founder/Director for UK Black Pride and a board member of Justice for Gay Africans where I focus on Human Rights, Equal Rights, challenging racism and all forms of discrimination. I have strong social values and believe in the trade union movement and what we stand for
COMMITTEE MEMBER: Cat Stephens
I am a sex worker and have been a member of GMB since 2003. (GMB is the only UK trade union that offers people in the sex industry this fundamental human right.) Because of my work, I’m not comfortable having my photo published (in real life, as other Committee members will tell you, I am very glamorous ;-) so the image is from a sex workers’ rights campaigning organisation.
I’ve been active within my Branch for most of the time I’ve been a GMB member, been a member of Shout! since, probably about 2004-5, and am also involved with GMB Sisters, London Region’s women group. I attend Local and Regional Equality Forums and have been to regional and national equalities conferences, GMB Congress and – a couple of times – TUC LGBT and Women’s Conference.
Although my paid work is in prostitution, I also volunteer as a campaigner for policy on the sex industry to be based on evidence and on respect for the human rights of everyone in the sex industry, whether there by choice, circumstance or coercion.
COMMITTEE MEMBER: Jackie Nield
I have worked within the GMB Union since becoming a member and a rep in 1988.
I have always been passionate about equal rights and have been attending meetings and been involved for many years.
I believe in the collective of union participation and believe groups such as Shout! are the cornerstone of what equalities and the GMB stand for.
COMMITTEE MEMBER: John Maggs
Hello, John here, GMB Shout! Committee Member and “on-line” Editor. I’ve been an active member of GMB Shout! For just over a year now and already involved in working party’s such as Pride & LGBT History Month.
I have always worked in the private sector, but have also always been a member of a trade union, knowing the protection and valuable services they provide. It’s only in the last few years that I’ve become actively involved and have been a visible face, but have been working quietly in the background for many years.