The National Shop Stewards Network sends our support and solidarity to the thousands of steelworkers, their families and the steel unions who are trying to come to terms with the news that Tata is looking to sell off its UK steel business. This means that what should be a fundamental foundation of the economy and the jobs and communities that go with it are under real threat.
We organised a solidarity meeting in Port Talbot last month when Tata announced that nearly 20% of the 4,000 direct jobs in the works were to go. We called for the UK plants to be nationalised to save these priceless assets. Today, we renew our call for Tata’s UK plants to be taken into public ownership. If it was ok to nationalise the banks in the credit crunch, why not the steelworks now? Instead this time, it should be for the long-term not short-term profits for the fat cats.
To give a platform to this call and to build solidarity with steelworkers and the many other workers reliant on the industry including freight workers on the roads, rails and sea and the many contractors – the NSSN is calling a public rally this Saturday April 2nd in Port Talbot to launch our campaign for nationalisation. It will be at 12noon outside the Post Office in Station Road. We encourage our supporters to organise similar events in other affected towns and communities. Sign petition here
Nationalise to #SaveOurSteel
We won’t be fooled by Osborne’s gimmick wage! #FoolsGold protest April 1 & #FastFoodGlobal Day of Action on 14 April
The Tories will be re-branding the minimum wage as National Living Wage this Friday April 1st. The 50p rise is nowhere near enough to take low-paid workers out of poverty pay and the under-25s are excluded!
But we won’t be fooled by Osborne’s gimmick wage! To counter the Tory hypocrisy, a campaign is being launched to fight for a real minimum wage of £10 per hour with no youth exemptions. This is being headed by the BFAWU bakers’ union, the GMB and the Hungry for Justice / Fast Food Rights coalition (in which the NSSN campaigns alongside the BFAWU, John McDonnell Shadow Chancellor, Youth Fight for Jobs, Unite the Resistance, Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) and others).
There will be a protest this Friday opposite Downing Street at 12noon and we also be taking part in the #FastFoodGlobal Day of Action on 14 April.
There will be a big focus in Wakefield on April 14, where on the day there will be a demonstration and social. There will also be protests led by BFAWU fast food workers in Glasgow, Scarborough and Cambridge as well as the events in Wakefield. Come to London this Friday, join the April 14 protests or organise your own. Please also use and follow on social media – #FoolsGold #A1 #WakeyFor10 #10Now4All #10AndAUnionThis is a statement from BFAWU National President Ian Hodson:-
“In truly ironic fashion, April 1st 2016 will see the introduction of the Conservatives’ ‘living wage’, which they unveiled as a gimmick and a ruse to hide the true impact of their ‘emergency budget’, after they won the general election in 2015. Predictably, the right-wing, Tory supporting media used every propaganda tool at their disposal in order to force the public to lap up what was in effect, nothing more than a clever sleight of hand. Unfortunately, by the time reality kicked in and people started to see through the hype, it was too late. The truth of the matter is that the government’s paltry ‘living wage’ won’t reach the levels recommended by the Living Wage Foundation until 2020. How typical of this Tory government to use spin and deception to distract people from the real agenda of savage cuts to in-work benefits, originally designed to cushion the blow of poverty pay read more on NSSN website
For more see Fast Food Rights / Hungry for Justice website
BMA Junior Doctors dispute – Junior Doctors started the first of three more 48-hour strikes on March 9th after the Tories announced their plan to impose the new contract. BMA website – Junior doctors: 48 hour industrial action begins in England For info on picket lines, strike rallies etc follow #JuniorDoctorsStrike #NotSafeNotFair #JuniorDoctors on twitter
The next planned dates of industrial action are:
6 – 8 April: Emergency care only between 8am on Wednesday 6 April and 8am on Friday 8 April (48 hours)
26 – 28 April: Full withdrawal of labour between the hours of 8am and 5pm on Tuesday 26 and Wednesday 27 April (18 hours in total)
The NSSN has produced a model motion that can be used in unions at all levels and trades council here
Save BIS Sheffield: support Sheffield March for Jobs (22 March) – Thousands of people are expected to join a PCS march through Sheffield on 9 April to protest against the loss of hundreds of jobs in the city. At the end of January the Department for Business Innovation and Skills (BIS) announced plans to close its Sheffield site by January 2018, losing 250 jobs. Taken together with other closures including, HM Revenue and Customs Sheffield site, the overall loss of jobs to the city is 500 read more from PCS website
NUT Conference votes for strike action to defend teachers and education from forced academies (26 March) – This afternoon, NUT Annual Conference voted overwhelmingly for a Priority Motion on ‘The White Paper: The Wrong Priorities’ which includes a call for a ballot for discontinuous action to begin with a one-day strike before the end of the summer term and to seek to coordinate action with other unions too read more
The academy threat to Small Heath School has been withdrawn – now lift the suspensions! — Teachers at Small Heath School in Birmingham have voted to continue their strike action. They have now taken 20 days of strike action. But despite eleven hours of meetings with management and the council in February, two NUT reps remain suspended. You are encouraged to send messages of support to David Room at [email protected]. A petition to defend the two reps, including Simon O’Hara and to say ‘no to academisation’ of Small Heath School has attracted nearly 3000 signatures – please add your signature sign here
Reinstate Clive Walder
The NSSN is delighted to announce that John Vasey a sacked CWU postal rep in Wakefield, West Yorkshire has finally been reinstated by Royal Mail (see CWU website). We now demand that Clive Walder gets his job back at British Telecom.
Clive Walder, a longstanding leading rep in the CWU had an appeal against unfair dismissal rejected by British Telecom on 9 November, confirming his sacking after 38 years of service. Clive is chair of the CWU Birmingham, Black Country & Worcester branch.
Clive worked in a BT call centre and was dismissed after an aggressive customer reported him to management just 33 seconds into a phone call. The decision was made without taking stress into account despite the local CWU branch reporting that 7% of staff at the call centre leave their jobs each month, some walking out mid shift. Management took the decision without consulting any medical advice or taking into account any mitigation.
Clive is a NSSN steering committee member and we will be supporting the campaign protesting the sacking and campaigning for his reinstatement.
Contact Clive to send messages of support and invite him to your union branch, shop stewards committee, trades council etc – [email protected] 07771931185
CWU ‘drive for 35’ (24 March) – A shorter working week will be a “priority aim” during the forthcoming national negotiations with Royal Mail, this week’s CWU postal policy forum decided read more
People’s Assembly April 16 March for Homes, Health, Jobs, Education | End Austerity Now – Assemble: 1pm, Gower Street / Euston Road, London NW1 http://www.thepeoplesassembly.org.uk/hhje
NSSN / Kill the Bill news
This year’s annual NSSN conference – our 10th – will be on Saturday July 2nd in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL – 11am-4.30pm. Conferemce fee is £6 each. Please put in your diaries!!
South London NSSN public meeting: ‘South London Fights Back’ – 7.30pm Wednesday April 13th Karibu Education Centre, 7 Gresham Rd, Brixton SW9 7PH https://www.facebook.com/events/845645872228112/
Triple defeat for the government on trade union bill (17 March) – Peers in the House of Lords rebelled against the government on three key issues: electronic balloting, political funds and facility time. The trade union bill had its first day at report stage in the House of Lords on Wednesday 16 March, with a major backlash against the government’s unrelenting persecution of trade unions read more on PCS website
The last two pink NSSN ‘£10 Now’ t-shirts are available for £8. Both are women’s large sizes. First come first served! Order by emailing [email protected]
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 attached and here
Download the ‘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]
More Union News
Union calls on authors to support campaign to save library service, protests planned at celebrity author events – Unite The Trade Union will be protesting at events organised by Bromley Council where celebrity authors have been invited to book signing events. Orange prize nominated author Gillian Slovo will be at the Central Library on Saturday 9th April from 2.30 to 4.30 pm. Historian and author Ian Porter will be at Mottingham Library from 10.30 to 11.30 am on Wednesday 13th April. Mr Porter will be giving a talk on “Marches, Processions and Protests”
Domestic workers in government call to end ‘modern day slavery’ (24 March) – WHAT: Migrant domestic workers hand in petition to home secretary Theresa May MP
WHEN: Thursday 24 March 2016, 13:00
WHERE: The Home Office, Marsham Street, London SW1P 4DF
Campaigners from Unite the union, Justice for Domestic Workers, Walk Free and Kalayaan will be handing in a petition to the home secretary Theresa May today (Thursday 24 March), demanding changes to the visa scheme to give victims of domestic slavery a real chance of freedom read more
Electricians and plumbers work-to-rule at two north west NHS trusts over ‘losing £3,500-a-year’ (23 March) – Electricians and plumbers working at two NHS trusts in the north west are working to rule and banning overtime from this weekend in long-running disputes which have resulted in them losing about £3,500-a-year read more
GMB Scotland Equal Pay Protest (March 23) – GMB Scotland Protest In North Lanarkshire On 31 March 2016 For Fair Settlements To Equal Pay Claims. Some of these women have died waiting and now their families are still waiting for the council to give them back their money says GMB Scotland. GMB Scotland Equal Pay Now! campaign will demonstrate outside the North Lanarkshire Council meeting on Thursday 31 March 2016, for a fair settlement to GMB members’ equal pay claims read more
CCTV workers to take further strike action 1 April to 4 April – Nineteen UNISON members employed as CCTV operators and supervisors by Community Safety Glasgow (CSG), an ALEO of Glasgow City Council, are taking further strike action from the 1st to 4th April. Over 95% of the workforce is in UNISON read more
National Demo 18 April 1pm SOAS, University of London: Stop the contract, cleaners in-house now! SOAS J4C is calling for a national solidarity demo after SOAS senior management declared today they intend to sign the contract to outsource the cleaners for five years on April 18th, and postponed any further negotiations to April 21st https://www.facebook.com/events/1750430338524998/
Piccadilly line strike action rock solid (24 March) – TUBE UNION RMT said that strike action by drivers on the Piccadilly Line is rock-solid this morning in a dispute over bullying and harassment of staff that has led to a complete breakdown in industrial relations. All services are currently suspended and will remain so throughout the rest of the day read more
RMT rally on eve of Northern Rail hand over to Deustche Bahn (24 March) – TRANSPORT UNION RMT will be holding a rally to “Defend Rail Services, Safety and Jobs” at the Mechanics Institute, 103, Princess Street, Manchester on Thursday 31st March 2016 – the eve of the Northern franchise handover to German-state operator Deutsche Bahn. The rally, supported by RMT’s sister rail unions ASLEF and TSSA, kicks off at 18.00hrs read more
West Dunbartonshire Secondary Teachers To Restart Strike Action (21 March) – Secondary teachers in West Dunbartonshire’s Secondary schools are recommencing a programme of action with two days of strikes this week as they continue their fight against cuts to Principal teacher posts read more Messages of support to [email protected]
Members at the Rio in Dalston are preparing for a ballot for industrial action (24 March) – BECTU members at Dalston’s Rio cinema are preparing to vote in a ballot for industrial action after talks at ACAS failed to resolve their long-running pay dispute. Management and BECTU representatives met at ACAS on 7 March but the talks ended without any movement on management’s part. A consultative ballot amongst members followed and concluded this week with a decision to ballot for industrial action. In an 83% turnout in the consultation, 94% of members voted to be balloted for industrial action read more
UCATT slams Tory Government for making construction worker deaths collateral damage (23 March) – Construction union UCATT says the Health & Safety Executive (HSE) is being told by the Tory Government to prioritise company profits over the health and safety of construction workers read more
Luas workers reject WRC proposals on pay and productivity (29 March) – Luas drivers and revenue protection grades at Transdev have overwhelmingly rejected proposals on pay and productivity brokered at the Workplace Relations Commission. The drivers ballot rejected the proposals by almost 100%. The other grades voted by 100% to reject the WRC proposals read more Luas Support Group – https://www.facebook.com/groups/533923853456339/
IWGB Bicycle Couriers Demand Minimum Wage and Other Basic Employee Rights at Employment Tribunal (March 23) – The Couriers Branch of the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) has submitted a claim to the Employment Tribunal which, if successful, will revolutionise the employment status of cycle couriers, making them eligible for the basic rights and benefits that they are currently denied: the minimum wage, paid holidays, and protection from trade union victimisation, among others. The claim is being brought against four of the UK’s largest courier businesses: CitySprint, eCourier, Addison Lee and Excel Group Services read more
United Voices of the World
Sign petition for Topshop to pay living wage – Over 33,000 people have signed this petition calling on Topshop to cough up and pay their workers a living wage. Please sign and share if you haven’t done so already. https://www.change.org/p/topshop-pay-your-cleaners-the-living-wage https://www.facebook.com/uvwunion/
Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) – Claiming our victories! The disability movement that led to Iain Duncan Smith’s resignation read more
Video: Activist Grills Sussex Police About Protestor Rights
A new Care2 film details the legal rights of protestors at UK demonstrations. Care2’s Senior UK Campaigner, Beth Granter, interviewed Sussex Police about the rights of the public who want to peacefully demonstrate. In an era of increasing tension over how police manage public protest, the Care2 video aims to shed light on how police respond to protestors. VIEW THE VIDEO HERE: http://bit.ly/ActivistFAQ
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)
Time is running out for blacklist firms: protest 9.15am outside Royal Courts of Justice, Strand WC2A – Countdown is progressing to the time when the multi-national companies that organised the illegal blacklisting cartel are dragged into a full High Court trial. Lets make this a huge turn out to send a message to the rats and corporate crooks: our fight isn’t over til the clock strikes. Dress code: Bring a big clock https://www.facebook.com/events/812975302136630/
Blacklisted book http://newint.org/books/politics/blacklisted-secret-war/
Donate to ReelNews – http://reelnews.co.uk/donationssubscriptions/
USA: Texas Prisoners Organize: Threaten to Strike April 4th with IWW Prisoner Union read more
Diary (see & use false economy)
16 People’s Assembly March for Homes, Health, Jobs, Education | End Austerity Now
Assemble: 1pm, Gower Street / Euston Road, London NW1 http://www.thepeoplesassembly.org.uk/hhje
2 10th annual NSSN Conference in Conway Hall, London
PHONE 07952 283 558
EMAIL mailto:[email protected]
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE