The New Lucas Plan: A Workers-Led Transition

Tuesday April 18th

In the late 1970s, a group of workers at Lucas Aerospace, threatened by corporate restructure and mass redundancy, came up with their own plan for the factory. The Lucas Plan – otherwise known as the “alternative plan for socially useful production” – drew on the workers’ own skills and expertise to set out in detail how to switch production away from weapons and into medical equipment, heat pumps and other socially useful products.

Today, the New Lucas Plan, an alliance of trade unionists, academics, and environmental and peace activists among others, is developing a bottom-up, workers-led strategy for how to transition rapidly out of fossil fuel-based technologies. Inspired by the original Lucas Plan, and unlike the government’s rhetoric on net zero, their strategy will prioritise the knowledge and skills of workers when deciding how to reallocate resources. It will ensure that the welfare of workers and communities is put front and centre, and redistribute power from corporate bosses to the people. The New Lucas Plan alliance also works with fellow trade unionists on collective bargaining and with community campaigners focused on the climate and nature crises.

Hilary Wainwright, sociologist, activist, author and co-editor of Red Pepper magazine, will set out the history of the original Lucas Plan. She will also talk about her current research into present day trade unions and efforts to extend collective bargaining to help bring about a low carbon economy.

Followed by discussion.

(Unfortunately, Sam Mason, policy officer at the Public and Commercial Services Union, is no longer able to take part in this event.)

Kairos, The Bookroom, Essex Hall, 1-6 Essex Street, WC2R 3HY

6.30pm for drinks, talks starts at 7pm followed by a one-pot vegan supper and discussion.

£5 members, £10 non-members. Includes food.