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REST IN PEACE, MICHAEL ALS

posted 6 Dec 2013, 11:46 by Gerry Kangalee

2013-12-06

 

REST IN PEACE, MICHAEL ALS


The National Workers Union (NWU) mourns the passing of Michael Als and extends condolences to his family and to the leadership and members of the Banking Insurance and General Workers Union (BIGWU). 

Michael Als played a significant role in the post-independence development of the trade union movement and the progressive movement in Trinidad and Tobago. He came to national notice in the 1960’s with his leadership of the Young Power Movement which was one of the tendencies in the mass movement that shaped the 1970 revolutionary insurrection. 
 
During the states of emergency which the PNM government imposed on the country in 1970 and 1971, Als, along with other leaders of the movement became a political detainee. 
 
Michael Als was the founder and President of the Bank and General Workers Union which was one of the constituent units (the other being the Bank Employees Union) which formed the Banking Insurance and General Workers Union. That union is today the fastest growing and one of the more progressive unions in the country. 
 
Michael Als also served as the General Secretary of the Council of Progressive Trade Unions which played a pivotal role in the 1970’s and 1980’s in educating and mobilising the working class. 
 
He was a teacher, poet, writer, cultural activist, political activist and trade unionist. Is Slavery Again, one of the books he wrote, is among the important publications examining the history of the working class. In his later years Michael Als became involved with community development, particularly in its youth aspect and more so in the Toco area. 


FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: 
Gerry Kangalee (National Education and Research Officer – Cell: 785-7637)
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