Tube unions have suspended the latest two planned 24-hour strikes this week in their dispute over night-time running. They and their members will decide if any new offer from London Underground/TfL is sufficient to settle but it’s clear that the action that has already twice brought London to a halt has forced management to move. Whatever happens next – and more strikes are planned in September if necessary – all workers should take confidence from this struggle. Action does get results.
This is particularly important as the Tories look to roll out a new wave of cuts and their anti-union Trade Union Bill. Yesterday, the Tory Evening Standard claimed that a majority of Londoners supported the attacks on union rights but the reality is that over 60% supported the last tube strike.
Don’t believe the Tory lies – support the tubeworkers!
NSSN ‘KillTheBill’ rally & lobby of TUC Congress 1pm-3.30pm Sunday September 13th in Brighton – The NSSN are pleased to announce that union General Secretaries Mark Serwotka PCS, Mick Cash RMT, Matt Wrack FBU, Ronnie Draper BFAWU, Dave Ward CWU and Steve Gillan POA will be speaking at our #KillTheBill rally at this year’s TUC Congress in Brighton. There is a Facebook event www.facebook.com/events/396898687168095/ – please share.
The rally will be part of a lobby called by the NSSN. We will be calling on the TUC and its affiliated unions to organise a demonstration when the Tories debate their trade union bill in Parliament. The lobby will also push for preparations to begin for mass co-ordinated strike action if the laws are passed and against the Tories’ brutal cuts.
It will be in the Grand Hotel from 1pm-3.30pm in the Charlotte Room 97-99 King’s Rd BN1 2FW (next to the Brighton conference Centre).
Email us on [email protected] if you want to attend and need transport.
The NSSN encourages all union branches and trades councils to organise #KillTheBill rallies, public meetings and protests to help build opposition to the Tory Trade Union Bill – email us the details of your events and we’ll publicise them
Saturday August 29 #StrikeSwansea rally – Strikers from 2 unions (PCS & RMT) & 3 disputes (DVLA, Amgueddfa Cymru/National Museum Wales & First Great Western) will hold a rally at Waterfront Museum 11am this Saturday (co-ordinated by Swansea Trades Council) www.facebook.com/events/174678956196439
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
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]
BREAKING NEWS!! John Vasey, CWU Postal Unit Rep in Wakefield, was sacked on 21st August – we will have updates ob developments and solidarity material – follow #NSSN on twitter and NSSN website
Union recognition win for CWU (August 21) – An “excellent” recognition agreement has been achieved on behalf of employees of Gather and Gather – a subsidiary of Mitie – who provide staff catering services at Capita’s customer service sites read more
Justice for Postmasters (18 August) – National CWU officers have repeated demands for direct government action and a full judicial inquiry into the Post Office’s “outrageous” treatment of hard-working Postmasters, following last night’s hard-hitting BBC Panorama report read more
Fantastic support for first day of week-long strike (24 August) – Members at National Museums Scotland have turned out in force on the picket lines. About 60 members of the National Museums Scotland branch – half the total membership – have been on the picket lines this morning as part of their long running campaign about weekend allowances. The strike runs from today (24 August) until Sunday (30 August), during the world famous Edinburgh Festival when many visitors would normally be expected to visit the museums. The National Museum of Scotland on Chambers Street was closed to the public apart from the shop and cafe and there was a message on the website for the National Museum of Scotland and the National War Museum warning the public about the closures. Picket lines will be held every day from 9-11am read more
As National Gallery strike goes past 70 days, Candy Udwin’s sacking is upheld but petition tops 120,000! – Candy Udwin has heard that the National Gallery had turned down her appeal against dismissal despite the ruling of an Employment Tribunal Interim Relief Hearing that it was likely she had been unfairly dismissed for her trade union activities. 60,000 people have signed the petition to the new gallery director Gabriele Finaldi against the gallery’s privatisation plans since he took up post this week, doubling its numbers to over 120,000 signatures! PCS is meeting Dr Finaldi this week and will ask him to step in to resolve the dispute by doing the right thing – to overturn the privatisation and to reinstate Candy. Talks are also ongoing with the National Gallery and Securitas at ACAS. Candy’s Employment Tribunal hearing will be in October Keep supporting the indefinite #NationalGallery strike
Pickets out this morning as FGW strike solid in all areas (23 August) – RMT pickets are out at all key locations this morning (picture from Paddington attached – credit RMT) as the strike action over the threat to jobs, safety and services is solidly supported across FGW with widespread disruption read more Latest from RMT website: FGW INDUSTRIAL ACTION REMAINS IN PLACE Swansea strike rally this Saturday
City Cruises Thames river workers to strike in fight over pay and conditions (21 August) – transport union RMT confirmed today that staff working for City Cruises, one of the major players in transportation on the River Thames, will strike next week on Thursday 27th August between 07:00 hours and 20:00 hours in a fight for pay and workplace justice. That strike will be followed by further action on Friday 4th September and Saturday 5th September – again between 07:00 hours and 20.00 hours. Workers at the high-profile company have been organised by RMT and recently vote by 100% for action read more
Sellafield faces wave of industrial action in health and safety dispute (24 August) – Workers from nine sub-contracting companies will be staging a wave of industrial action in the escalating dispute at Sellafield in Cumbria to improve health and safety and productivity at the nuclear facility. Construction workers involved in the decommissioning and renewal project at the site are angry at the refusal by Sellafield Ltd and the 14-strong group of sub-contractor companies to facilitate a full-time union convenor on the site. Members of Unite, the country’s largest union, working for Balfour Beatty Engineering Construction Services; Cape Industrial Services; Focus Scaffolding; Hertel UK; Interservice Industrial Services; Jacobs Stobbarts; Meldrum Ltd; Mitie Facilities Services (also known as OneFM) and PPS Electrical will be imposing an overtime ban and working to rule from Thursday 27 August. Workers at all the companies, except Balfour Beatty, will also be striking between 05:30 and 08:00 on 1, 9 and 16 September followed by a 24 hour stoppage starting at 00:01 on 23 September read more
‘Crisis council’ Bromley faces ‘referendum’ call on learning disability privatisation (20 August) – Bromley residents are being asked to support the call for a ‘referendum’ on the future of the council’s learning disability services, which faces being privatised on 1 October. Unite, the country’s largest union, is launching the ‘referendum’ to demand that residents, service users, carers and families have a say when it comes to the future of the service. In protest at the privatisation, adult services staff will be striking for 48 hours from 00.01 on Thursday 27 August. As well as on the two strike days, the workers will be manning stalls on Bromley High Street this Saturday (22 August) from 11:00 to 13:00 asking residents to sign up for the call for a ‘referendum’ read more
Stansted Strike 31st August (August 25) – GMB call on Mitie to attend ACAS talks to avert further Security Scanners strike at Stansted on 31st in August in pay dispute. Mitie refusal of talks at ACAS shows that the company disregard for their employees also applies to their customers. GMB is calling in Mitie to attend talks at ACAS to avert a further strike on Monday 31st August by 30 GMB members who operate the security scanners for checked in luggage at London Stansted airport in a dispute over pay read more
Win by members at Aramark South London (August 25) – strike averted at South London Hospital as GMB members employed by Aramark win dispute over unpaid holiday pay. After Aramark got notice of an official ballot they agreed to reimburse the leave that had not been paid says GMB. Strike action by 21 GMB members working for Aramark has been averted at the Maudsley Hospital, part of South London and Maudsley NHS Trust, as the employer has agreed that they will be paid their full holiday entitlement read more
Site Visit Reveals Undercutting (August 24) – GMB site visit reveals ‘exploitative’ employment practices and undercutting at Teesside energy-from-waste-plant. SITA are treating migrant workers deplorably and not paying anywhere near our nationally agreed rates, less than half in most cases says GMB. Construction unions GMB, Unite, and UCATT today (Monday 24 August) called on Sita and Semcorp to intervene and stop contractors building the energy-from-waste plant at Wilton on Teesside undercutting pay rates and using ‘exploitative’ employment practices read more From UCATT website From Unite website
Further strikes at Sellafield in pay dispute (August 21) – GMB Sellafield Health Monitors in further strikes from Tuesday 25th to Friday 28th August in pay dispute. Management have made no further attempts at any reasoned dialogue so further action by the Health Monitors is necessary says GMB read more
Carillion Oxford 100% Strike Vote (August 20) – GMB members employed by Carillion at John Radcliffe Hospital in Oxford vote for strike action over imposition of changes. Carillion should halt imposition of changes leading to pay cut of up to £56 per week or face official strike ballot. GMB members employed by Carillion porters at the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford voted by 100% in a consultative ballot in favour of taking industrial action in a dispute over changes to working patterns that Carillion are trying to force through which will lead to a serious loss of income for staff read more
Probation staff set for second strike in England and Wales (August 26) – All UNISON members working for the National Probation Service and community rehabilitation companies in England and Wales will strike on Monday 14 September. The three-hour strike – their second – will be followed by two and a half weeks of action short of strike, with members working strictly to their contracted hours. This protest follows an earlier strike on14 July, over the 0% pay offer for 2014. Since that strike, the employers have walked out of ACAS pay talks, sparking the new action read more
Defend Max Watson at his appeal hearing – On Thursday 27 August Max Watson, London Met Uni UNISON Branch Secretary will be making his appeal against compulsory redundancy. Max Watson, is under threat of being made redundant. He is the only member of staff in his whole faculty being made compulsorily redundant and one of only three UNISON members facing compulsory redundancy among non-academic staff across the whole University. Max has proved time and again to be a staunch fighter of members’ interests at the University, and UNISON believes the University is using this round of redundancies to deliberately target Max because he is a thorn in their side – Thursday 27th August, 12-2pm outside Rocket Complex London Metropolitan University 166-220 Holloway Road more info
We’re Hungry for Justice: Fast Food Rights National Organising Day: 16 September – On 16 September the Bakers union are holding a National Organising Day hosted by the Trade Union Congress. The organising day is a space for fast food workers, union activists and community campaigners to find out more about the Fast Food Rights campaign. It will be about drawing in activists from across the movement to discuss practical ways to help win better pay, job security and respect at work in fast food sector read more
Work in Fast Food? Join the BFAWU – £10Now! Fast food Workers in the united states are registering victory after victory. The fight for $15 and a union is winning increases in minimum wage in cities across the states. Some of the most oppressed working class people in America are driving the political agenda of the Presidential election and forcing the likes of Hillary Clinton and Barak Obama to make statements in support of their cause and in support of unions in general. Workers in the US started in the same position as workers in the UK with small numbers of fast food workers engaged with the union. A small group of workers in New York, came out on strike and triggered a national phenomenon. We can do the same read more
Essex fire service control staff strike over family ‘unfriendly’ working practices (August 25) – Control staff with the Essex fire service, 95% of whom are women, are striking today (25 August 2015) as part of a dispute over unworkable shifts imposed by Essex fire service managers. Control staff who once worked family friendly shift patterns are now being forced to work twelve hour day and night shifts read more
Firefighters campaign against frontline cuts ahead of strike action (August 19) – Firefighters have been travelling across Essex county this week campaigning against huge frontline fire and rescue service cuts which could see frontline firefighter numbers cut by up to a quarter. Firefighters in Essex will walk out this week in protest at the cuts. The FBU say fire chiefs are not being honest about the impact the cuts will have on the service delivered to the public read more Essex Fire and Rescue failing to reduce fire deaths, home fires and casualties, new report shows
August edition of FireFighter available here
Ashworth Secure Division to take Strike Action (August 20) – The POA have balloted its membership in the secure hospital in Mersey Care trust and the result was overwhelmingly in favour of strike action. The ballot was enacted after two members were dismissed for restraining a violent patient who had assaulted staff. The facts surrounding the case demonstrates a complete lack of duty of care towards employees in the secure division who keep the public safe from some of the most dangerous patients in the country. Steve Gillan General Secretary stated: “The POA have given Management every opportunity to rectify this decision by not making our ballot public or commenting on this issue until the internal appeals had been heard. They have now been heard and Management upheld the dismissals. I can confirm that we intend to take strike action or action short of strike action so the general public know the surrounding issues pertaining to this case.” read more
Anger as BBC chief calls Asian Network strike a jolly (19 August) – Helen Boaden, head of the BBC’s radio division told staff at a meeting in Birmingham’s Mailbox that those working for the Asian Network should stop playing the victim. The BBC executive, who is paid £420,000 a year, told the NUJ rep: “If the strike’s not a jolly, then why don’t you call it off?” The 24-hour strike is over the axing of one out of two editor posts in Birmingham and moving a third of the Birmingham based-output, the Bobby Friction Show, from Birmingham to London. Three years ago the Asian Network’s budget was halved and around 30 members of staff were sacked. At the time Bob Shennan, director of music, who earns £244,565 a year, gave staff a commitment that the Asian Network would not have to make any more savings. He now denies this read more
UCATT urges caution over short term loans aimed at construction workers (26 August) – Construction union UCATT is warning construction workers to be extremely cautious before taking out a new short term loan product. The loans are being offered by the company SubMe and are primarily aimed at construction workers who are paid via the Construction Industry Scheme (CIS) and are officially self-employed or who are paid via umbrella companies. Workers can borrow up to £5,000 and loans are due to be paid back within three months. However the APR interest rate is a staggering 383% read more
London Living Wage Protest in London (19 August) – On Wednesday 19th August members of UCATT and Unite held co-ordinated protests outside the offices of the employers organisations who sit on the Construction industry Joint Council and who have blocked ensuring that London Construction Workers are at least paid the Living Wage of £9.15 an hour read more
Latest edition of NUT The Teacher magazine read here
United Voices of the World
Reinstate the Sotheby’s 2! – UVW and friends (including activists from TUSC, NSSN, OSEA, AF, PCS, DPAC, SWP, Unison and Class War) returned to Sotheby’s last Saturday August 15 to protest for the 5th time in 6 weeks in order to reinstate the cleaners, the Sotheby’ 2, who were sacked for being members of a trade union and for participating in lawful, peaceful protest www.facebook.com/unitedvoicesoftheworld Protest outside Sotheby’s Battersea Car auction – 6pm Monday September 7th Battersea Evolution Battersea Park London SW11 www.facebook.com/events/967757346578854/
Cinema celebrating working people – The London Labour Film Festival takes place next month and you’re invited to participate. This year’s festival will be held at the Arthouse Crouch End from 24-26 September.
Full details can be found on the festival website – here
Here’s how the festival organisers describe the films being shown this year:
We shine the spotlight on austerity as we kick off with our opening night screening of director Theopi Skarlatos’s film Greece: The End Of Austerity followed by a Q&A with Channel 4 economics editor Paul Mason (who made the film with Skarlatos) and representatives from Greek anti-austerity party Syriza. Arrive early for a complimentary glass of Ouzo and join us in solidarity with Greece.
You can meet the UK branch of Justice For Cleaners at the Q&A that follows the screening of Ken Loach’s Bread and Roses. The film features two Latina sisters working as cleaners in a downtown office building and follows their fight for the right to unionise. This is, I believe, one of the most compelling and honest films of the 21st century.
The stimulating discussion continues as we invite film director Katherine Round and journalist Owen Jones for a post-screening discussion of globalisation documentary, The Divide. This is an LLFF exclusive pre-release preview of the film (which has its cinematic release next month) so you get to see it here first! Based on the bestselling book The Spirit Level, this compelling film follows the lives of seven individuals, all of whom face the great ‘divide’ between the poor, the working poor and struggling middle class on the one side and wealthy plutocrats on the other.
We’re proud to welcome the legendary Lesbian And Gays Support The Miners activist Gethin Roberts as well as miners’ strike stalwart and former-MP Sian James for a screening of Pride. We couldn’t not screen one of the best feel-good labour films ever to have hit cinemas, so if you haven’t seen it on the big screen yet then this is your chance to experience it with a great crowd, who will no doubt be cheering and booing at all the right moments.
Campaigns against austerity are already teaching us a lot about the plutocratic and politicised elite that holds power in our society, so much so that cult dystopian classic They Live now looks almost prophetic. We’ll be giving away They Live-inspired T-shirts at this screening, so come early and make sure you bag one.
Definitely not to be missed is salutary fast-food tale Compliance, which unfolds over a busy day in a burger restaurant where a prank caller convinces a manager that an employee has committed a theft and needs to be interrogated. What follows is shocking and thought-provoking, as managers and staff participate in the degradation and humiliation of their co-worker.
Thanks — and please spread the word!
Eric Lee LabourStart
Blacklisting & Victimisation
Buy the book ‘Blacklisted: The Secret War between Big Business and Union Activists’ Author: Dave Smith and Phil Chamberlain. Blacklisted tells the controversial story of the illegal strategies that transnational construction companies used to keep union activists away from work. See the official trailer from ReelNews
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)
Blacklisted book http://newint.org/books/politics/blacklisted-secret-war/
International (also see Labourstart)
Lebanon: ‘Garbage protests’ shake the ruling class read more
Diary (see & use false economy)
6 Burston Strike School Rally – Church Green, Burston, near Diss, Norfolk IP22 5TP https://burstonstrikeschool.wordpress.com/the-rally/
13 NSSN rally & lobby of TUC Congress in Brighton 1pm-3.30pm Grand Hotel
4 No to Austerity, Yes to Workers Rights – National demonstration at Conservative Party Conference in Manchester more info
PHONE 07952 283 558
EMAIL mailto:[email protected]
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE