High profile campaigns against blacklisting in the construction industry and exploitation of immigrant labourers in Qatar have helped raise Mr Kennedy’s standing within the Labour movement. He will now chair Labour’s NEC during the run up to next year’s general election.
He is the first Ucatt member to hold this position.
Mr Kennedy said: “This is a tremendous honour for Ucatt and indeed myself. I hope to do justice to the position in this forthcoming crucial election year.”
Steve Rotherham, Ucatt member and Labour MP for Liverpool Walton, said: “I want to put on record my heartfelt praise for our union’s national political officer Jim Kennedy and say how delighted I am that he will assume the role of chair of the Labour Party’s NEC – ahead of the most important general election in a generation.”
Mr Kennedy represents Ucatt on all parliamentary and political matters, provides strategic and detailed advice to the union on government and Labour Party relations, supports the general secretary on the work of the TUC, Scottish TUC, Wales TUC and works with other unions on political issues.
He was ranked number 88 in the Daily Telegraph's 2013 list of Top 100 most influential Left-wingers.