Accompanied by the the leading lights of West Berkshire Kleptomaniacs Anonymous, I toured the exhibition stands at the conference yesterday.
The TUC wins the prize for best freebies. It is so good that my recovering kleptomaniac friends returned to the stand several times. If you ask them (those lovely TUC bods) nicely (and by the way, one of my friends is a fully paid-up member of Unison, so she had an excuse) they give you a most fantastic piece of kit which is a bit like Dr Who's Sonic screwdriver:
-It's a pen
-It's an eraser
-It's a torch
-It's an infra-red thingamejig for pointing at presentation slides
-It's a stick for your PDA
In the interests of product performance checking, I tried out the infra-red pointy thing during Sarah Teather's main hall session on adult learning. From my seat at the back of the hall I managed to get the little red spot to appear on the back of someone standing mid-way between the front seats and the speech card desk. An impressive range, I think you'll agree. It works better on people with white or light shirts on than on people with dark shirts on.
The TUC also have a devilish device which is a combined sellotape dispenser/stapler and label maker. There are also a range of memory sticks etc.
So, well done TUC, you receive the seal of approval from Kleptomaniacs Anonymous.
The award for "Best fun stall but....er.....what the heck does this have to do with your campaign?" goes to ATL, the education union, with their superb Wii virtual skittle alley. Terrific fun. I think I can just about see the connection to learning skills. Well done for giving us some great entertainment ATL!