Trade Union Committee

The Committee responsible for the RCN’s trade union function

Trade Union Committee election 2021

Elections have been held for eight seats on the committee, with terms of office beginning 1 January 2022. 

The following members have been elected unopposed to the following seats: Helen Oatham (Eastern), Karen Sanders (London), Roaqah Shaher (Northern), Denise Kelly (Northern Ireland), Mike Travis (North West) and Dennis Greer (Nursing Support Worker).

Following the close of voting on Wednesday 17 November, Sharon Osborne was elected to the East Midlands seat and Alisha Brown was elected to the Student seat on the committee.

As an RCN member, you can use this page to keep up to date with the Trade Union Committee's activity.

Just log in to see the agendas and summaries from previous or upcoming Trade Union Committee meetings.

The Trade Union Committee works to ensure that the RCN develops as a modern progressive trade union making a positive difference to the working lives of nursing staff. The committee is accountable to RCN Council and makes decisions on its behalf on all the RCN’s trade union functions and activities.

The Trade Union Committee has 14 members: one member each from Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and one from each of the nine English regions: East Midlands, Eastern, London, North West, Northern, South East, South West,  West Midlands, Yorkshire and the Humber. They are elected by members in their country or region. 

The remaining two members are from the Student and Nursing Support Worker (Health Care Assistants and Assistant Practitioner) membership categories and are elected by the members of those groups.

You can find out more about the role and remit of the RCN Trade Union Committee by reading the Terms of Reference. 

 

Graham Revie

Graham Revie - Chair

Member for Scotland, January 2020 - December 2023

Graham is a Senior Charge Nurse and RCN member of Staffside in NHS 24 where his focus is on representation of members and developing effective partnership working between NHS 24 and NHS trade unions. Prior to his time at NHS 24, Graham spent a decade in senior roles at the Armed Forces Hospital in Riyadh, in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and has held a number of positions within the NHS in Scotland. He has been active in the RCN in a number of roles, including serving as Chair of the RCN UK Stewards Committee and on the Scotland Board. In 2016, Graham was presented with the RCN Award of Merit.

TUC.Scotland@rcn.org.uk

Denise Kelly

Denise Kelly - Vice Chair

Member for Northern Ireland, January 2020 - December 2021

Denise has 28 years’ experience in the Health and Social Care service, initially as an Auxiliary Nurse in 1992, commencing her Registered Nurse training in 1995 at The Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast, she has worked in many roles, including Junior and Senior Staff Nurse, Deputy and Ward Manager, in intensive Care Unit, Coronary Care, Night Sister, Patient Flow and currently a full time Senior Clinical Nurse Coordinator on the Hospital At Night Team. She has undertaken Post Graduate Study in Health Service Management, Cardiology Nursing and Facilitation and Practice Development. Denise graduated with a Post Graduate qualification in Strategic Workforce Planning in March this year. Due to this extensive experience, Denise understands the challenges facing RCN members and is proud to be a dedicated RCN member, accredited Steward, Health and Safety Rep and activist. Denise is also the current Chair of of the Northern Branch.

Her primary focus is on the pay campaign and safe staffing especially following the successful industrial action undertaken by RCN members in Northern Ireland. Denise is passionate about the trade union work of the RCN, whilst also recognising the importance of the professional nursing work.

She received the RCN Award of Merit in 2020 for exceptional service to members. 

TUC.NorthernIreland@rcn.org.uk

Helen Oatham

Helen Oatham

Member for Eastern, March 2021 - December 2021

Helen is a registered mental health nurse with over 25 years’ experience in primary and secondary care and secure services; her current role is as the Governance Lead for an Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service which is a partnership service between NHS and other organisations.

Helen has been a steward since 2007 and as well as individual member support is actively involved in her Trust’s Staff Side committee and holds the RCN seat on the partnership meeting with the executive. Within the RCN, Helen has held various positions on the Branch Executive and is currently Chair of Norfolk Branch. Prior to being appointed to the TUC, she served for 6 years on the Eastern Region Board, the last as Vice-Chair.

She is an active speaker at Congress, having presented an item on resilience in 2019 and has been active in campaign activities including attending Parliament to speak with MPs about staffing and pay.

TUC.Eastern@rcn.org.uk

Neil Thompson Trade Union Committee

Neil Thompson

Member for East Midlands, January 2018 - December 2021 

Neil has been attending RCN Nottingham Branch meetings since the early 1980’s, he became a Steward in 1986 and a Safety Rep in 1993 (he has been the East Midlands Rep on the UK Safety Representatives Committee since 2011). Within the Branch structure, Neil has served as Vice-Chair, Secretary, and Treasurer and has only just come off of the Executive Committee after serving the maximum 10 year term. From 1982 to 2009 Neil was a fill-time District Nurse and for a number of years linked that with staff-side Chair for a PCT, since 2009 Neil has been away from front line nursing and has worked as a staff-side Chair and lead RCN Steward / Safety Rep.

TUC.EastMidlands@rcn.org.uk

Karen Sanders Trade Union Committee

Karen Sanders

Member for London, January 2018 - December 2021 

Karen has over 35 years’ nursing experience. Prior to becoming a Senior Lecturer at London South Bank University in the Adult Nursing and Midwifery Studies Department, Karen specialised in Adult Intensive Care and Neurosciences nursing and held Management, Practice Development and Education roles. In her present role Karen works with post–registration nurses and pre-registration nursing students. Karen is an RCN Learning Rep and served for two terms as Chair of the UK Learning Representatives Committee from January 2015 to December 2018.

TUC.London@rcn.org.uk

Photo of Roaqah Shaher

Roaqah Shaher

Member for Northern, February 2021 - December 2021

Roaqah has worked for South Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust in Middlesbrough since she qualified as an Adult Nurse in 2004. She is currently a Clinical Sister in the Cardiothoracic High Dependency Unit and also has experience as a Ward Manager in General Medicine.

Roaqah was accredited as a RCN Steward in 2007 and joined the Joint Partnership Committee soon after in 2008. After being elected to Vice Chair of the Staff Side Committee for 2 years, she was elected to Staff Side Chair in 2015 and have remained in that position since. Within the RCN Tees Valley Branch she has held the position of Vice Chair and Secretary. She has been the Treasurer of the branch for the last 3 years.

TUC.Northern@rcn.org.uk

Mike Travis

Mike Travis

Member for North West, January 2018 - December 2021

Mike is a Surgical Nurse within the Intensive Care and High Dependency Units at Alder Hey Children’s Hospital in Liverpool, where he has worked for over 35 years. In his time at Alder Hey, he has also held roles as Risk Manager and Manual Handling Co-Ordinator. Mike has been actively involved with the RCN ever since becoming an RCN Steward in 1980. He became a Safety Rep two years later and has gone on to serve in a range of capacities including three full terms on RCN Council, and as a member of the Congress Agenda Committee.

TUC.NorthWest@rcn.org.uk

Liz Jeremiah Trade Union Committee

Liz Jeremiah

Member for South East, January 2020 - December 2023

Liz qualified in 1999 as an Adult Nurse, since then she has been working full-time at Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust. Her clinical background is in Emergency Medicine and Critical Care. Although Liz has been a member of the RCN since she trained, in the past two years she has begun to take on more active roles – alongside her election to the Committee, she is also a work-place Steward and Branch Chair. Liz is passionate about staff well-being and is especially interested in combatting workplace bullying and harassment. She works closely with her Trust’s ‘Freedom to Speak Up’ guardian service.

TUC.SouthEast@rcn.org.uk

Jeni Watts

Jeni Watts

Member for South West, January 2020 - December 2023

Jeni works as the Commissioning Support Engagement Officer of a CCG, where her role focuses on supporting the co-production of NHS services. Jeni is a registered adult and children's nurse and health visitor, and spent nine years as an RCN Officer. She has previously been an RCN Steward, and is now an RCN Learning Representative, and is currently Chair of the Devon Branch.

TUC.Southwest@rcn.org.uk 

Jackie Davies

Jackie Davies

Member for Wales, January 2020 - December 2023

As a registered nurse, Jackie has a clinical professional background in mental health nursing and forensic psychiatry. An experienced Trade Unionist, Jackie has an interest in healthcare law, clinical negligence and employment law. Jackie graduated in law with an LLB (Hons) in 2006. In 2014 Jackie also obtained a Masters Degree in Healthcare Law and Ethics from Swansea University. Jackie is a board member with the Royal College of Nursing Wales Board, she has been a branch official within the RCN Glamorgan branch for several years holding various positions such as Chair, Treasurer, secretary and more recently Communications officer.

Jackie is currently an independent member of the Board of Swansea Bay University Health Board, a public appointment she has held since 2017. She is Chair of the Swansea Bay Armed Forces Forum and Chair of the Swansea Bay Organ Donation Committee.

TUC.Wales@rcn.org.uk

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Karl Marshall

Member for West Midlands, January 2021 - December 2023

Karl has worked within the NHS since 1990 and is currently a Mental Health Nurse in the Early Intervention Team at Worcestershire Health and Care NHS Trust. He is an accredited RCN Steward and has previously been a member of the RCN UK Stewards Committee, where he worked on a Task and Finish Group to develop an RCN strike pay policy. Karl is also an RCN Safety Rep and is an Associate member of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
 
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Anne Penny

Member for Yorkshire & the Humber, August 2020 - December 2023

Anne is a registered nurse with 45 years' experience working in front line services and has been an RCN steward for the last 16 years. She served on the RCN UK Stewards Committee from 2016 to 2020 and has been a member of the RCN's Yorkshire & the Humber Board since 2012.

TUC.YorksandHumber@rcn.org.uk

Photo of Dennis Greer

Dennis Greer

Nursing Support Worker member, February 2021 - December 2021

Dennis is a Senior Nursing Assistant in the Rapid Response Team and a Healthcare Practitioner in a GP practice at Omagh Hospital and primary care complex. He served on the Nursing Support Workers Committee from 2014-2020, including as Vice-Chair from 2016 and is very active within his branch as the RCN South Western Branch Secretary and as an RCN Network lead for Nursing Support Workers in Northern Ireland. Dennis is a Steward and is currently undertaking training as a Safety Rep.

TUC.HealthPractitioner@rcn.org.uk

Heather Massie

Heather Massie

Student member, January 2020 - December 2021

Heather graduated from UCLan in September. In addition to her role on the Trade Union Committee, Heather is the Chair of the RCN UK Students Committee and is an ex-officio member. She is also involved in the RCN NRN Network.

TUC.Student@rcn.org.uk