NSSN 327: Support RMT on Southern Rail!


The transport union RMT, its members, and many across the union movement are fuming at the proposed Southern Rail ‘deal’. It was made with the leadership of the Aslef transport union and presided over by the TUC – they and the Tories hope it will settle the Southern Rail dispute. We don’t believe that this is reflected on the ASLEF picket lines, where members have expressed real solidarity with RMT guards and station staff, who have taken 28 days of strike action. We call on Aslef members to reject this offer and call more coordinated strikes with the RMT.

We call on all our supporters and affiliates to stand side by side with the RMT. Send messages of support to the RMT and protest to the TUC and invite the union to speak at your union meeting. Let’s keep the pressure on the TUC. Demand from your union that it calls for an emergency TUC general council on the TUC’s conduct and then discusses how it can give full solidarity and support to the RMT against the Tory attack. RMT: email – [email protected] twitter – @RMTunion

RMT lobby of Parliament November 1st
RMT lobby of Parliament November 1st

RMT reaction to TUC/Southern Rail betrayal of safety and the conductor grade (Feb 4)

General Secretary Mick Cash said; “This so-called agreement is a shocking and historical betrayal presided over by the TUC of not only the conductor grade and drivers, but also passengers, including disabled passengers, who have lost the guarantee of a second member of staff on their trains.

“This abysmal document lists a whole host of areas where a a train can leave without a second member of staff that will leave both the driver and passengers exposed and vulnerable and which also represents a thin end of the wedge that will lead to the de-staffing of trains.

“Loyal and dedicated conductors, who have fought for safety for over a year have had the legs kicked from under them by those who are supposed to be on their side. Passengers and staff alike have been sold out by a stitch up cooked up in Congress House by the TUC and the bosses whilst Southern,  one of the most anti-union and hated companies of recent times, is laughing all the way to the bank and have been given a free run to rip up the safety rule book in the name of profits.

“This is not a deal it is a disgrace and the RMT dispute remains on and we will fight this shocking betrayal with every tool at our disposal. We remain available for talks.”

NSSN North East public meeting in support of the RMT – 1.30pm Saturday February 11th Pumphreys Bar Newcastle

RMT on transport committee report on rail franchising

Tube strike action suspended as on-going RMT fight leads to reinstatement of nearly 60% of axed jobs

London Midland train conductors secure major victory over imposition of security contractors on trains

RMT moves into dispute and confirms ballot for industrial action as company fails to give assurances on guards on Merseyrail 


NSSN news

Trade Union Act to come into force on March 1st – TUC call a special conference

The Tories have confirmed that their anti-union laws, incorporated in the Trade Union Act, including new undemocratic industrial action ballot thresholds will come into force on March 1st. The NSSN calls on the TUC to implement the policy passed at last September’s TUC Congress which was moved by the RMT which includes:

“Congress believes the General Council needs to convene an urgent conference of affiliates to provide a practical forum, including workshops, as to how to best coordinate our legal and industrial response to the Act in line with policy already set by Congress.”

and an amendment from the FBU:

“Congress should discuss all options for challenging the new legislation. This should include stepping up the campaign to scrap the Act and other anti-union legislation as well as the practical steps to be taken to support any unions and groups of workers threatened by this anti-worker legislation.”

Read more    PCS: Welsh ministers move to quash anti-union law

Watch NSSN chair Rob Williams being interviewed on SKY News on the Christmas strikes and opposing Tory attacks on the unions here

Lobby placards

Early notice – the 11th annual NSSN Conference will be on Saturday July 1st 2017 from 11am in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL. It is open to all trade union and anti-cuts campaigners Facebook event

This is a video of the NSSN TUC Congress Rally on 11 September – Tories Out! Keep Corbyn!

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 is below

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]



Union News


Striking British Airways cabin crew take poverty pay battle to parliament (06 Feb) – Around 100 striking cabin crew working for British Airways’ mixed fleet are set to lobby parliament tomorrow (Tuesday 7 February) and seek MPs’ support in their ongoing battle against poverty pay at the airline read more

Mixed Fleet lobby of Parliament Feb 7
Mixed Fleet lobby of Parliament Feb 7



Government equality staff to take five more days strike action (7 Feb) – The next strike day by PCS and Unite members in the ongoing dispute is Thursday 9 February. EHRC staff have already been on strike for five days…We are calling for London based PCS members to attend the London picket line at Fleetbank House, Salisbury Square, London, EC4Y 8JX from 7 am to show their solidarity as part of the TUC’s HeartUnions week of action, a week dedicated to celebrating the great work done by union reps and members in workplaces and in society.

There also pickets in:

Glasgow – 7.45-10am 151 West George Street G2 2JJ

Manchester – 7-10am Entrance Arndale Centre on Cross Street

Birmingham – from 11am Victoria Square House, Victoria Square B2 4AJ

The other planned strike dates are: Wednesday 1 March 2017, Monday 20 March 2017, Tuesday 18 April 2017, and Wednesday 17 May 2017

Other ways to help:

Please send messages of support to [email protected]

Tweet to @savetheehrc

Write to the EHRC chief executive officer Rebecca Hilsenrath at EHRC, Fleetbank House, 2 – 6 Salisbury Square, London EC4Y 8JX.

Send donations to our strike fund to: PCS PSG Hardship Fund, Sort code: 608301, account no: 20151243 read more

Sign petition: Stop Union Busting at Tate here



Derby school support staff continue action up to half term (6 Feb) – UNISON video showcases support for six-month action from parents and teaching colleagues. Derby teaching assistants are taking further strike action this week, as they continue their campaign for pay fairness during the run-up to half-term read more

Derby school support staff to stage city centre ‘love-in’ as dispute with council enters its eighth month

Donate to Derby hardship fund here

Derby Unison branch Facebook page here

Support the Durham Teaching Assistants from Unison and ATL who have also taken strike action to stop wage cuts of 23% – Save the date! Solidarity demo 25th March Facebook event

Donate to the Durham TAs’ fund here

Durham TAs Facebook page here

Support ongoing Glasgow Unison janitors’ dispute – see Unison Glasgow City Branch Facebook group and website

Support the Kinsley School cleaners in Wakefield on indefinite strike since September 6th Facebook Group. Donate to strike fund – send to Wakefield Unison, 18 Gills Yard, Wakefield WF1 3BZ

Academics back strike by King’s College cleaners



1971 Postal Dispute – Watch CWU video here

The NSSN wishes to send our condolences to the family of Bernard Roome, former members of CWU’s NEC and long-time supporter of our Network who sadly recently passed away. Memorial meeting – 3pm Saturday 25th March Grand Hotel opposite Swansea train station. An obituary can be read here



NSSN North East are supporting ‘The North East needs a pay rise’ this Saturday February 11th from 10.30am in Newcastle Facebook event

‘Migrant workers welcome – £10 an hour for all now!’ – Join the protest at 8am outside Kings Cross train station in London. Supported by BFAWU and RMT

The Fast Food Rights campaign are calling for ‘Fight for £10 – May Day Pay Day’ marches this May Day – contact Gareth Lane [email protected] for info

Reinstate Kumaran Bose – sacked by Samworths! The NSSN is supporting the BFAWU’s campaign in support of Kumaran Bose who was dismissed for speaking out and for organising a union in his workplace read more    Facebook group   BFAWU Statement On Samworth Brothers’ Sacking Of Kumaran Bose



Campaign to reinstate activist sacked by University of Liverpool (2 Feb) – UCU has mounted a campaign to reinstate a trade union activist who was sacked just before Christmas by the University of Liverpool after working there for 28 years. In December Dawn Holdman – the equalities officer of the University of Liverpool branch of UCU – was dismissed from her role as school administrator in the school of medicine. Although the university said this was part of a restructure, a job very similar to Dawn’s was advertised externally during the process. UCU believes she was dismissed for her union activities read more

Support the reinstatement of London Met union reps: Mark Campbell and David Hardman https://uculondonmet.wordpress.com/



The BECTU Picturehouse cinema strike has been escalated – 4 cinemas are out this Saturday 11 February from 2pm. In addition to Brixton Ritzy and Hackney, Crouch End (165 Tottenham Ln, London N8 9BY) and Central (Corner of Shaftesbury Avenue and Great Windmill Street, Piccadilly, London W1D 7DH) will be out for the first time. There will also be a joint protest on Saturday 25 February from 12noon outside the Empire Cinema in Leicester Square https://www.facebook.com/events/1370376026370008/

Sign petition: A London Living Wage for Picturehouse Workers here

Brixton Facebook Page   Hackney Facebook Page   Crouch End Facebook Page    Support the Picturehouse Strike Fund – donate now



Video: PCC takeover forced through with no support from firefighters (7 Feb) – Legislation to allow police and crime commissioners (PCC) to govern fire and rescue services in England has been forced through without any great support from firefighters, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) general secretary has said. In a video update, filmed just before the legislation was given royal assent in Parliament, Matt Wrack argues PCCs will neither deliver the economic, efficient or effective emergency services that the government says it will. Nor will it optimise public safety read more

Sign petition to stop Surrey County Council’s plans to cut fire and rescue cover in Spelthorne by 50% – for more info: Save Our Services in Surrey website

Protest against plans to cut 60 posts in Warwickshire read more

Please show your support for North Yorkshire Firefighters – from Matt Wrack FBU General Secretary: North Yorkshire FBU members are currently engaged in a lawful trade dispute with their employer over the intention to introduce Tactical Response Vehicles (TRVs) which would be crewed with only two or three firefighters. Send messages of support to the FBU members at Scarborough Fire Station via Brigade Secretary Steve Howley at [email protected]. Hardship fund details:

North Yorkshire:           North Yorkshire FBU Hardship Fund

Account number:          25450874  Sort code:                      05-09-94  read more



Industrial Action Set For Bifrangi (Feb 6) – Overtime ban looms at specialist forge after wages frozen for three years. GMB members have voted for industrial action at Bifrangi (UK) Ltd‘s Lincoln site. An overtime ban will begin at the specialist forge from February 13 following a three year freeze on workers’ wages read more



Newsquest questioned over ‘opaque’ annual accounts (3 Feb) – The NUJ has asked for questions to be answered by Newsquest following the publication of its 2015 accounts. The union said the newspaper group should clarify why its latest accounts have wiped hundreds of millions of pounds off its revenue column, turned in a paper loss of £47 million and sliced more than 3,500 staff off the books compared to the previous 12 months read more


Mandate (Ireland)

Tesco strike scheduled for St. Valentine’s Day – Mandate Trade Union has issued strike notice to Tesco Ireland stating that the action will take place on St. Valentine’s Day, Tuesday, 14th February 2017 and will continue for an indefinite duration. Members of the Union balloted in favour of strike action by a margin of 78 percent. Mandate, which represents more than 10,000 workers at the company, say the strike will initially involve 9 stores, but could escalate with a further 15 stores expected to ballot for industrial action tonight and tomorrow night read more


United Voices of the World union (UVW)

UVW members are to be balloted imminently at the London School of Economics (LSE). The LSE and cleaning contractors Noonan will be imminently notified of the ballot dates during which the cleaners will be voting on whether or not to strike. This is the first time cleaners have voted on strike action in the history of the LSE. Please consider making a donation to LSE cleaners’ strike fund – http://www.uvwunion.org.uk/justiceforlsecleaners/

Website: www.uvwunion.org.uk   Facebook: www.facebook.com/uvwunion   Twitter: @UVWunion



Deliveroo could face mass action in Brighton from riders earning below minimum wage (Feb 7) – Deliveroo told it could face mass action including protests and strikes if it doesn’t offer a better deal to riders in Brighton within two weeks read more  Brighton Deliveroo Drivers were on strike on February 4th over low pay (£4.00/drop) and have voted to unionise with the IWGB! read more




Other News

On 14 February, the “Show Culture Some Love” campaign is linking up with “Heart Unions” week to celebrate both London’s cultural heritage and the unions that represent the people who make it all possible London events

‘It’s Our NHS!’ national demonstration: assemble 12noon Saturday March 4th Tavistock Square, London WC1H – As 2017 opens, the crisis in the NHS continues. The Health Campaigns Together grassroots campaign has called a national demonstration https://www.facebook.com/events/1771664639725061/   GPs ‘incensed’ by May threat to funding warns Doctors in Unite

SERTUC Public Services Committee Health Conference – Saturday 25 February 2017 read more



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 who are having their Xmas party tonight December 13th – 7.30pm onwards Brixton Pound Café 77, Atlantic Rd SW9 8PU

Blacklist Support Group financial appeal: the Blacklist support group is desperately short of funds, to continue the incredible work 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)

The Labour MP Chuka Umuna has secured a Westminster Hall debate in parliament with the title ‘Blacklisting in the construction industry’ for 4pm – 4:30pm on Wednesday 8th February. 

The debate is open to the public and Blacklist Support Group urges supporters inside and outside the UK parliament to turn up. If you’re coming, make sure you arrive early enough to get through the long queue at security. ‘Blacklisted’ t-shirts are a good look for the media.

BSG continue to campaign for a full public inquiry into the blacklisting scandal

Book http://newint.org/books/politics/blacklisted-secret-war/

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

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog

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

Donate to ReelNews – http://reelnews.co.uk/donationssubscriptions/




Egypt: Court acquits IFFCO workers of ‘incitement’ but union leaders, members still barred from work  read more   Watch solidarity film here:-

Philippines: luxury Peninsula hotel continues victimizing union leaders for participating in IUF Global Housekeepers Campaign read more






4 ‘It’s Our NHS’ – National Demonstration to defend the NHS in London on March 4th 2017 – called by ‘Health Campaigns Together’ an umbrella organisation of different local campaigns against NHS cuts https://www.facebook.com/events/1771664639725061/  http://www.healthcampaignstogether.com/index.php

With Banners Held High – all day workshops, debates, exhibition gig in Wakefield in support of causes such as Justice for Mineworkers and Orgreave Truth & Justice Campaign https://webmail.123-reg.co.uk/appsuite/#!!&app=io.ox/mail&folder=default0//NNIS%5B

13 Orgreave Truth & Justice Campaign ‘Make Some Noise for Justice’ demo – 2pm, Home Office Marsham Street London SW1P 4DF http://otjc.org.uk/noise-demo-transport/

18 National Demo: Refugees and Migrants Welcome – Stand Up To Racism, Islamophobia & Anti-Semitism read more



1 11th annual NSSN Conference 11am in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL



PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]


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ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE