The New Lucas Plan – 1 year on

Dave King via lists.riseup.net <lucasplan-announce@lists.riseup.net>

Dear Friends, One year on from the inspired Lucas Plan 40th Anniversary conference in 2016, we thought it would be an ideal time to update participants on what has been happening in the past year to take forward the outcomes of the conference.

New Lucas Plan project

With some delays due to the political situation and a snap election, we held a strategy day of discussion with over twenty participants on 1st July to develop a plan to take forward the outcomes of the conference.  From this we have launched the New Lucas Plan project to take forward the pioneering ideas of the Lucas Plan that are as much – if not more – needed today as they were in the 1970’s.

Four working groups arising out of the conference have been meeting since the beginning of the year to take forward the different strands of the conference which now form part of the new project. These are:

  • Arms Conversion/Defence Diversification
  • Just Transition
  • Automation/Robots
  • Local Planning

An overarching strategy paper Another Economy is Possible linking the four groups has been developed. The main aim is to develop the ideas of and build support for socially useful production, popular planning for social need and democratic control of technology, by expanding our networks in the trade union, green/alternative economics and cooperative movements. We are aiming to develop local, regional and national policies and plans e.g. for industrial strategy, through bottom-up democratic processes and to make arms conversion/defence diversification and Just Transition government policy.  Copies of the strategy and information on the work of the New Lucas Plan, including the working groups, can be obtained by contacting Dave King dave@breakingtheframe.org.uk.

Please get involved! The New Lucas Plan is about building a movement from below.  If you are not already involved in a working group or on the main discussion list and would like to be, please contact Dave King. If you would like anyone from the New Lucas Plan project to speak at a meeting you are organising, or would like copies of our new flyer to distribute, please get in touch.

Events/film screenings

We organised fringe meetings at the TUC Congress and the Anarchist Bookfair and had input into green jobs events at the Green Party and in Aberdeen. There have been two screenings of The Plan at the Mayday Rooms in London. Steve Sprung, the film maker, is still working on final edits and issues of distribution, but we hope to be able to say more on this early in the New Year

Shadow Defence Diversification Agency – TUC Congress motion

At TUC Congress in September, a motion calling for a shadow Defence Diversification Agency to be set up was passed, significantly with support of the Unite union. This is an important step. A lot of people worked to achieve this, but major credit should go to Newcastle TUC which drove the motion through the Northern Area TUC and the National Trades Councils Congress, before being selected for debate at the national TUC.  Full details of the text can be seen on the Campaign against the Arms Trade website.

Website/Publications

Work is currently underway to redesign the website to reflect the ongoing project.  This will retain links to Lucas Plan archive material (which is currently being digitised) and the conference, but will be more focused on the new project working groups, and ways to get involved. We’ll send another email on this once it’s all live. We will shortly publish a pamphlet on the Lucas Plan and the themes of the current project.

Future plans

We are currently discussing the possibility of holding a follow-up conference in 2018.  We will keep you updated on this, but if you have any thoughts you’d like to share on this that would be very welcome. We will also be participating in a Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union group conference on climate jobs on 10th March.  Next year will also see the publication of Hilary Wainwright and Dave Elliott’s book on the Lucas Plan, with a new introduction.

Wishing you all a peaceful holiday period and best wishes for the New Year.

New Lucas Plan steering group

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