Crawley captures assistant posting

THE broadcasting and entertainment trade union, BECTU, has elected a new assistant general-secretary.

Luke Crawley was elected to the post following a ballot of members and – says BECTU – he “will be responsible for the independent commercial and public broadcasting divisions, working across TV, radio and new media, plus the union’s Arts & Entertainment Division, which predominantly includes theatre, cinema exhibition and computer games”.

BECTU boasts 27,000 members. Crawley had to beat off the challenge of one other candidate for the post: Willy Donaghy, supervisory official for the Arts & Entertainment Division. Crawley is the second of two assistant general-secretaries at BECTU, the other being Martin Spence, who is responsible for the London and Regional Production Divisions and Laboratories.

Luke began working for the BBC in 1982 as a radio studio manager for World Service programmes before moving to news and general programmes for Network Radio. He joined BECTU forerunner, the ABS (Association of Broadcasting Staffs), four days after starting work at the BBC and was later elected onto the national executive committee of BETA (Broadcasting and Entertainment Trades Alliance) in 1989.

He was a key figure on the strike committee during a long pay dispute at the BBC in 1989 and took part in negotiations at a national level.

In 1993, Luke joined the newly-amalgamated union of BECTU as a national official for the BBC division and since then has worked across News, Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Resources. Since his appointment as supervisory official of the BBC Division seven years ago, he has led the national negotiations with the corporation.

He said: “I am very pleased to have won and I would like to thank everyone who voted for me. Now that the elections are over we need to get on with the job of supporting the members and building BECTU into a stronger union in the BBC, Arts and Entertainment and Independent Broadcasting divisions.”

The position of assistant general-secretary was created after previous incumbent, Gerry Morrissey, was elected general-secretary in four months ago.