It’s the end of an era for the NUJ in Scotland with the departure of Scottish national organiser Paul Holleran.
After more than 20 years at the helm, Paul is going home to Liverpool to take up a fresh challenge playing a major role in health and safety training with the GMB.
Pictures by Mark Shields
Health and safety has been a workplace issue close to Paul’s heart in his role as head of the NUJ in Scotland and he has promoted the importance for management to recognise the impact of stress on workers caused in the workplace. He also introduced the NUJ media guidelines on Responsible Reporting on Mental Health, Mental Illness & Death by Suicide.
Paul started out in publishing when he left school and made his way into a successful career as an award-winning journalist before becoming a fulltime union official heading the NUJ’s Scottish office. The media industry has gone through many years of transition impacting on the way journalists work and requiring the services of the NUJ.
He said “Being an active member and a full-time official of the NUJ for nearly 30 years has been a great experience and a major part of my life. I have met so many interesting people and have been fortunate to have helped many of them during this time.”
Highlights of Paul’s NUJ career include:-
- maintaining high membership levels with major press and media employers in Scotland;
- establishing salary structures and house agreements in all major Scottish employers;
- introducing successful policies on dignity at work, zero tolerance of bullying and harassment;
- creating recognition of our influence and respect for the NUJ at all levels of the trade union and political sector in Scotland;
- establishing and building a training project which has been a success on many fronts in retaining and recruiting members;
- establishing the NUJ as a main player in areas of health and safety, mental health and suicide awareness;
- successfully setting up and maintaining working relationships with organisations on refugee and asylum seekers’ issues;
- establishing and supporting awards for good reporting on refugees, violence against women, student awards; enhancing and driving up our reputation on ethical reporting;
- working with the Scottish Federation of Entertainment Unions on cultural issues and campaigning on funding including success for increased spending in BBC Scotland; and
- establishing strong group chapels and strong links between chapel reps and officials, enabling negotiated settlements with very few requirements to take industrial action in the last 25 years.
Paul was born in Liverpool in 1956 and came to Glasgow 41 years ago.
We wish him all the best in his return to his home town of Liverpool and his work with the GMB responsible for health and safety and training in north-west England and Ireland and thank him for his many years of dedicated service to the NUJ and journalists in Scotland. He will be missed.