227: Northern Ireland workers ballot for joint March 13th strike

From the website of the Northern Ireland Public Service Alliance trade union (NIPSA):-

Dispute over Pay and/or Staffing Cuts – Industrial Action Ballot (23 January)

You will be aware from previous circulars that the NIPSA Civil Service Group Executive Committee recommended that members employed in the NI Civil Service and related NDPBs, including Cross Border Bodies and the NI Assembly should participate in a campaign of opposition to the unfair 2014 imposed pay settlement and the thousands of staffing cuts that arise out of the 2015/16 NI Draft Budget and that this campaign would include industrial action, including strike action, along with other public sector trade unions across the public service. This recommendation was overwhelmingly endorsed by branches in the consultation exercise that was conducted last December.

Arrangements are now being put in place for a statutory industrial action ballot of members to enable NIPSA Civil Service Group members to take action along with our colleagues in other areas of the public sector. NIPSA members in the Health, Education and other sectors are also being balloted for industrial action. Unions organising employees in Translink will also be balloting their members for strike action. If the ballots result in a “Yes” vote for strike and other industrial action then the plan is to commence the action with a one day strike across public sector areas on Friday 13th March 2015 read more



‘Stop the union-busters!’ Advanced notice: this year’s NSSN conference, our 9th, will be on Saturday July 4th in Conway Hall in London. Confirmed speakers include Mark Serwotka PCS General Secretary

The famous pink NSSN £10 minimum wage t-shirts are still available. Email us to order – £8 each. We have the following sizes: women – small, medium, large, XL and men – small, medium, large, XL, XXL

Get your trade union branch or trades council to affiliate to the NSSN – it only costs £50. Already affiliated? Please think about renewing it. Also, many of our supporters pay a few pounds a month. You can set up a similar standing order to ‘National Shop Stewards Network’, HSBC – sort code 40-06-41, account number 90143790. Our address is NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE. Affiliation letter here

Download the new ‘Join the NSSN’ leaflet here

Midlands NSSN Conference – Saturday March 14th 2015 Unite Offices, Birmingham download leaflet

And if you can, come to one of our regional Conferences. If there is not one in your area, get in touch to either assist in organising or have a speaker at one of your meetings or events. Contact Rob or Linda on [email protected]



Union News

STOP PRESS!! The January 29th NHS strike has been suspended. More information to follow from Unite website   GMB    Unison     Society of Radiographers




Juice giant’s pay squeeze prompts 10 weeks of strike action (22 Jan) – Up to 430 members of Britain’s largest union, Unite will be starting a series of 36-hour stoppages at the Bridgewater based juice giant Refresco Gerber on Tuesday 27 January, over plans to railroad through cuts to their pay, terms and conditions. The eleven 36-hour strikes, over 10 weeks, follow a refusal by the company to fully negotiate the introduction of cuts to shift and sick pay and the imposition of new shift patterns. The changes at the juice maker, which produces supermarket own brand products for Waitrose, Asda and Tesco and works with brands such as Innocent, Del Monte and Ocean Spray, also involve cuts to overtime and bank holiday pay, as well as holiday entitlements read more



DLR strike action called off as union secures agreement (27 Jan) – Transport union RMT has announced that strike action due to commence on Docklands Light Railway early tomorrow morning has been called off after talks with the operators – Keolis/Amey – secured agreement on all of the key points in dispute read more

Staff on historic Settle/Carlisle rail line to strike again (Jan 26) – Staff employed by the Settle and Carlisle Railway Development Company – providing at-seat catering on Northern Rail services between Carlisle and Settle – are to take strike action again this Thursday January 28 in a continuing row over compulsory redundancies. The action follows rock-solid 24 hour strikes on 13th December and 14th January read more



March against fire service cuts in Lincoln Saturday January 31 – assemble from 11.30am St Martins Square, Lincoln High St @DefendFire

Support locked-out Essex firefighters & hardship fund (Jan 16) – Essex Firefighters took strike action from 9am on Wednesday 14 Jan. The three days of planned partial actions have been escalated as the employers effectively chose to temporarily lock firefighters out rather than accept three days of more limited strikes read more from NSSN website

Essex FBU Hardship fund details: ‘Essex fire brigades union hardship fund’ Account no. 086001 20292568.



PCS seeks assurances after Ordnance Survey GovCo announced (26 Jan) – PCS is looking to protect our members’ employment security after the government announced plans to turn Ordnance Survey into a government-owned company read more

National Gallery staff 5 day strike Feb 3-7 Our National Gallery members have voted overwhelmingly to strike over plans to hand all visitor services to a private company. In a ballot that closed today, 94% voted for strikes on a 62% turnout read more



North Somerset Strike Action (Jan 27) – GMB members overwhelming vote for strike action at Keir May Gurney Refuse and recycling in North Somerset in pay dispute. If there is no movement industrial action is inevitable which will have a significant impact on the residents of North Somerset says GMB. GMB members employed by Keir May Gurney on the refuse and recycling contract for North Somerset Council have voted overwhelmingly for strike action in the unresolved dispute on pay from April 2014. Over 90% voted for action in the ballot being conducted by EBRS which closed on 27th January read more

Further week strike at Woolwich Hospital (Jan 22) – GMB go ahead for further week of strike action by ISS Staff at Woolwich Hospital in dispute over two tier workforce. Dates for further week of strike action will be determined by strike committee and officers says GMB. GMB Southern Region Executive Committee has now given the go ahead for a further week of strike action in the long running dispute over the two tier workforce for over 200 members employed by ISS at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, Woolwich read more

Northern Ireland Water Action Suspended (Jan 21) – GMB suspends industrial action in Northern Ireland Water to put new offer in pensions dispute to members…Alan Perry, GMB Regional Officer, said “GMB and the other two unions, NIPSA and Unite, are satisfied that sufficient progress has been made to allow us to consult with our members on the offer tabled by Northern Ireland Water” read more    Water service workers win important victory



Strike off as deal reached at Lambeth College (21 Jan) – UCU members at Lambeth College will return to work tomorrow morning after accepting an improved offer from the college. UCU members walked out indefinitely on Monday this week (19 January) having already been on strike for five days this month and six in December. Last June, Lambeth College UCU members walked out for five weeks – the longest strike in the union’s history read more   from Lambeth College strike website

3-day strike at Barnsley College – Barnsley College UCU are on strike again for three days from Thursday 29 January to Monday 2 February. This follows 3 days of strike action since last October over the imposition of a new contract. Send messages of support for Barnsley College UCU to: [email protected]



Rally for Education 10 February – Join us and help ensure that support for the NUT education manifesto continues to grow as we near the General Election. The rally is a chance to hear from a number of high-profile speakers, including NUT General Secretary Christine Blower and children’s author Michael Rosen.

Date: Tuesday 10 February 2015

Time: 6pm

Venue: NUT Headquarters, Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, London, WC1H 9BD

Please confirm your attendance by emailing [email protected]



Firstsource dispute underlines need for union recognition (Jan 26) – Some 138 workers at call centre employer Firstsource are now in the process of returning to work after being suspended since the start of the year…Firstsource is a non-unionised workplace but the workers initially received support from Derry Trades Council. They organised a rallying meeting and also ensured free legal advice was available from a cross section of ICTU affiliated unions and accompanying solicitors. Now, whilst it appears the dispute may have been resolved; the way in which the company has conducted itself has made clear the importance of unionising workers at Firstsource and right across the call centre industry in Northern Ireland read more



Royal Albert Hall staff back petition for recognition (Jan 23) – Staff at the Royal Albert Hall are giving their backing to calls for BECTU to be recognised at the iconic venue. A petition launched in the last few weeks has so far attracted support from over 50% of the workforce read more

ITV unions vote for strike ballot over pay (Jan 22) – Union members at ITV have agreed to reject the company’s 2 per cent pay offer for 2015 and will move to a ballot for strike action unless the offer is substantially improved. In ballots which closed today (Thursday 22 January) there were overwhelming votes for a strike ballot, on high turn-outs, from members of BECTU, the NUJ, and Unite read more

UK Theatre workers take part in pay survey (Jan 22) – Workers at UK Theatre venues across the UK are taking part in a pay survey for 2015. The initiative, launched today (22 January), is part of BECTU’s preparation for talks with theatre employers in a few weeks. BECTU has claimed a pay rise of 5% for 2015, citing a drop in theatre staff incomes of over 12% since 2010 as key justification. The union is campaigning under the slogan ‘Let’s Bring the Curtain Down on Low Pay’ in a bid to encourage theatre employers to recognise the financial pressures their staff face read more


BFAWU / Fast Food Rights

Newcastle launch of the £10now minimum wage animation:

Day of action – Saturday February 14th in Newcastle City Centre

Animation film show launch – Thursday February 19th TUC Commercial Union House – 5th floor, 39 Pilgrim Street Newcastle NE1 6QE details


Protest in Manchester – Saturday 21February details tbc

Open Organising Meeting-Wednesday 4th Feb

5.30-6.30 pm,Mechanics Institute,103 Princess St, Manchester M1 6DD

In Solidarity

Ian Hodson, President BakersFood&Allied Workers Union(BFAWU)

Apryl Walcott, Young members executive member, BFAWU

Reports of Fast Food Rights protests on Youth Fight for Jobs website and Fast Food Rights website

Please send details of any local actions to [email protected] / [email protected] see BFAWU video



Other news

Trade union courses the College of Haringey, Enfield and North East London

Dear colleague

Please go to our website showing the latest trade union courses at Cohenel in April 2015. We are also advertising the following courses

Introduction to pensions 13th March 2015 (3 Fridays)

Pension provision in the UK has undergone major changes, some of which clearly impact on the opportunities for stable and comfortable retirement of any union member. This course will help you develop an understanding of jargon and inequality in pension provision, learn about the state provision of pensions, develop an awareness of occupational pension schemes and explore the regulatory framework that underpins this set-up.

Diploma in Employment law (Sept 2015)

This course will develop your understanding of current Employment Law relating to work, and includes modules on employment relations, equality law, work life balance/protecting workers, representation and union recognition, research, communication, problem solving and project writing.

We are offering this as an evening course only.

Diploma in Occupational Health and safety (2015)

This Diploma will help experienced safety reps develop their understanding of health and safety principle and practice.  The course gives an opportunity to question development and function of health and safety law, to build health and safety organisation within the workplace; tackle health, safety, welfare and environmental issues and undertake detailed project work; and develop key skills.

Do please circulate amongst other trade union colleagues.

Best regards Jonathan Jeffries



Blacklisting & Victimisation

Blacklist Support Group financial appeal: the Blacklist support group is desperately short of funds, to continue the incredible work in 2015 we need more finance, would you please consider making a donation, raise it at your branches and trade councils . Please make cheques payable to Joint sites committee and send to 70 Darnay Rise Chelmsford Essex CM1 4XA. Please forward onto your contacts many thanks Steve Kelly (JSC Treasurer)


Blacklist Support Group AGM

Saturday 7th March 2015 (1-4pm)

Jurys Inn Glasgow

80 Jamaica Street,


G1 4QG


This AGM is being held in conjunction with the construction rank & file

national meeting.

Speakers to be confirmed.


All blacklisted workers welcome to attend and vote.

All supporters welcome to attend.

Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlCa8yQmZ70

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/groups/blacklistSG/



International (also see Labourstart)

Greece: McCluskey: Syriza’s victory makes hope possible for millions across Europe read more

Greece: Prospect of Syriza victory raises workers’ hopes read more

Greece: SYRIZA victory rally Wednesday, 28 January 2015 from 18:30 to 21:00 (GMT) TUC Congress House 23-28 Great Russell Street WC1B 3LS London more info

Australia: Australian workers at food flavours TNC fight lockout with lockin! read more


Diary (see & use false economy)


29-31 NHS strike

31 London March for Homes – for Rent control, end the Bedroom Tax and welfare caps and build new council houses – South London assembly time is 12 midday St Mary’s Churchyard, Elephant and Castle, SE1 6SQ. East London leg agreed recently led by Focus E15 assemble Shoreditch Church, Shoreditch High Street E1 6JN (tube/rail Shoreditch High Street)

Invite others! For the Facebook event click here


Website http://marchforhomes.org/ further info, demands and open letter to sign



7 South East Region TUC is hosting a conference with the Anti-Academies Alliance at Congress House, London.  The theme is equity, equality and education: securing the future of a better state education for all.  Confirmed speakers include ATL leader Mary Bousted, Kevin Coutney of the NUT,  Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green Party, Professor Gus John, Bill Esterson MP, Zoe Williams of the Guardian and Jonathan Simons who leads on education for the right wing think tank Policy Exchange.  All welcome, but please register by phone 020 7467 1220



14 Midlands NSSN Conference – Unite Offices, Birmingham



28 International Workers Memorial Day



4 ‘Stop the union-busters!’ 9th annual NSSN conference – Conway Hall in London




PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]


TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts


ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE