The PCS general secretary takes over the reins and will chair TUC Congress in Brighton in 2019.
Mark will serve in the role for a year and preside over the TUC’s 151st Congress in Brighton in September 2019. In addition, he will also chair the TUC’s general council and executive committee. He will continue with his full-time PCS role throughout his time as TUC president.
Mark started work at 16 in the DHSS as a clerical officer, and served in the benefits service for 21 years, including seven years as a part-time worker to enable him to help look after his 2 children, Imogen and Rhys.
During his two decades as a civil servant he held a wide range of lay elected union positions, including holding responsibilities for Employment Tribunal cases.
He was elected to the post of general secretary in December 2000 - one of only a handful of leaders having come straight from the shop floor. He was re-elected in 2005, 2009 and 2014
In 2016, Mark underwent a heart transplant after years of heart failure. As a result of the care and dedication of our wonderful NHS staff, his transplant was successful and he is now in good health. He is a strong advocate of organ donation and supports a change in the law to presumed consent.
As a committed socialist, Mark is passionate about a publicly owned NHS, fair pay at work, and the need for a radical overhaul of the social security system. He is a strong opponent of privatisation.
Speaking after his election as president, Mark said: “It is an enormous privilege to be elected TUC president. I am grateful to our wonderful NHS staff- without whom I would not be here today. The NHS must be protected and remain publicly owned and free at the point of need.
“As a lifelong trades unionist, my experience representing 180,000 members in the civil service and related areas motivates me every day to fight for fair pay and a just social security system. I also believe that those who can afford it must pay their fair share of tax – enabling better funding of our vital public services.
“I am looking forward to working as TUC president, to fight for these issues and to help working people in the workplace and the community.”
The union now holds all British TUC presidencies with Scottish secretary Lynn Henderson as president of the STUC and Welsh secretary Shavanah Taj as Welsh TUC president.
This is great news for PCS members and will give us a stronger voice in the trade union movement across the country.