NSSN 388: BFAWU members strike back at McDonalds


NSSN supporters actively supported yesterday’s strike by BFAWU members in McDonald’s restaurants in Manchester, Crayford, Cambridge and Watford.

The day started with a midnight walkout in Manchester and ended as workers from all four areas converged on Watford, where there were stoppages at two of the town’s sites.

The strike rally heard from the strikers themselves and BFAWU General Secretary Ronnie Draper, National President Ian Hodson as well as a number of supporters including Labour MP and former McDonald’s worker Laura Pidcock.

Drawing the rally to a close, Ian Hodson reminded everyone to come on the TUC demonstration on Saturday May 12th in London. The McDonald’s strikers and other precarious workers such as Unite members in TGI Fridays who brought solidarity yesterday, should give all trade unionists confidence that a new generation of workers can be attracted to the unions if a fighting lead is given.

Keep sending solidarity to the BFAWU, post cheques to BFAWU, Stanborough House, Great North Road, Welwyn Garden City, Herts AL8 7TA and donate to the strike fund. Also help the fund by buying a #McStrike t-shirt. More info on the Fast Food Rights/Hungry for Justice website

Watford striker Richard Shattock speaking on BFAWU strike rally


TUC demonstration ‘A new deal for working people’: Saturday May 12th – assemble 11am at Victoria Embankment between Hungerford Bridge and Blackfriars Bridge. For details, including transport to the demonstration – https://www.tuc.org.uk/events/new-deal-working-people-tuc-march-rally

TUC demo snip

Come to the ‘A new deal for working people’ TUC march and rally in London on Saturday May 12th. It is an opportunity to mobilise hundreds of thousands of trade unionists, their families, friends and service users who are angry at the attacks of the employers and their Tory Government.



Solidarity with the People of Turkey (SPOT) Annual General Meeting 2018

Saturday 26th May, 2pm – 4pm, at the NEU/NUT Headquarters, Hamilton House, Mabledon Pl, London WC1H 9BD

SPOT was launched in March 2014, following the Gezi Park uprisings in Turkey during the summer of 2013. Since then as events in Turkey have unfolded and intensified, SPOT (supported by Trade Unions and campaign groups in the UK) has actively supported the struggle of the people of Turkey through every means possible, including sending delegations to Turkey, press releases, awareness raising campaigns, conferences, petitions and public demonstrations. The SPOT Network not only aims to strengthen the struggle of the people of Turkey but also to provide opportunities for learning and sharing between Turkey and the UK. We are confident that solidarity between the people of Turkey and England will strengthen the struggle for fundamental freedoms and democracy in both countries. With your support, our AGM will aim to strengthen and develop this purpose. Affiliate to SPOT by using this model motion



NSSN news

NSSN Conference moved to Saturday July 7th – support the June 30th NHS 70th anniversary events

The NSSN steering committee has decided to put our annual conference back a week to avoid a clash of dates with a national day of action to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the NHS on June 30th. We will do all we can to build these protests against continuing Tory health cuts.


The 2018 National Shop Stewards Network Annual Conference will be from 11am-4.30pm on Saturday July 7th in Conway Hall – 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL. The attendance fee is £6 and it is open to all trade union and anti-cuts campaigners. Affiliation letter and conference appeal letter is here

We also want to give advanced notice that once again we will be organising a rally at TUC Congress. This year it will be in Manchester on Sunday September 9th.

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

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]

You can receive this bulletin via email or you can choose to unsubscribe. But you must click here to subscribe/unsubscribe

Follow us on twitter via @NSSN_AntiCuts and Facebook




 Union News


RMT calls for halt to axing of guards as new group launched today on rail accessibility (30 Apr) – Rail union RMT today issued a fresh call for a halt to the axing of guards on Britain’s trains as the  Office of Rail and Road (ORR) announced that  it will create an advisory group to support work on potential updates to the guidance the rail industry uses to form accessibility policies. The union says that whilst an advisory group is useful its work would be compromised by the removal of the guards and station staff and RMT is calling on the ORR to immediately heed the actual responses to its question asking “Would a cross-industry protocol overcome the difficulties experienced by Assisted Travel users?” read more

RMT welcomes NorthLink news (26 Apr) – RMT welcomes news that Scottish government is purchasing NorthLink vessels but demands services are now taken into public ownership read more

RMT confirms further strike action on Northern Rail, Greater Anglia and South Western Railway in disputes over guards and safety (25 Apr) – RMT members on all three franchises will strike for 24 hours on Wednesday 9th May. In addition, members on South Western Railway will also strike for 24 hours on 11th May, 14th May, 16th May and 18th May. The announcement of the action in the three disputes came as RMT members from across the country gathered outside Parliament today to mark the second anniversary of the guards’ safety dispute on Southern Rail, Britain’s longest running industrial dispute, and to reaffirm the campaign in defence of safe staffing on the rail network read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Strike action suspended on South Western Railway as gesture of goodwill as company agrees to ACAS talks

RMT strike action goes ahead on Greater Anglia this weekend in fight over rail safety and the role of the guard

National dispute fund (DOO disputes) – If you would like to donate to the RMT National Dispute Fund which makes payments to support their striking members taking part in National DOO disputes then you can donate via PayPal using the donate button below or make a cheque payable to RMT National Dispute Fund and send it to the address below. Alternatively, you can ring their Freephone helpline on 0800 376 3706 who will be happy to process a credit card payment for you, or, if you would like to pay via internet banking, please email [email protected] for further details. Vicky Thompson, Finance Manager RMT, 39 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD. Tel: 020-7529-8843



Fresh Dial-a-Ride strikes as peace talks fail (30 Apr) – Workers at Dial-a-Ride will begin a second series of strikes tomorrow (Tuesday 1 May) after peace talks to resolve the dispute, over the withdrawal of rest days and imposition of new rosters, failed to make progress. The 120 workers who provide special needs transport for elderly people, the vulnerable and those with disabilities, on behalf of Transport for London (TfL), operate from depots in Woodford north London and Orpington in the London borough of Bromley. The workforce has described management’s plans to remove 10 rest days a year and impose ‘impossible’ now rosters as ‘turning them into robots’. The changes have created such high levels of stress and anxiety among members that they have been forced to contact TfL’s emergency helpline about their concerns. Following the 24 hour strike tomorrow (Tuesday 1 May) there will be a further 24 hour stoppage this Thursday (3 May). Both strikes will begin at 00:01 hours. The workforce first took 48 hours of strike action in late March (28-29 March). Since the initial strike, despite further talks with the conciliation service Acas, progress to resolve the dispute has not been made read more

Warrington and St Helens housing workers prepare for strike action (26 Apr) – Unite members employed at Helena Partnerships Limited, Golden Gates Housing Trust and Torus 62 Limited, who undertake housing maintenance on social housing in Warrington and St Helens, are preparing to ballot for industrial action after their parent company (Torus Group) imposed a below inflation pay increase on the workforce. The workers overwhelmingly rejected a below inflation pay offer of 1.5 per cent for 2017/18 and two per cent for 2018/19, in a consultative ballot, despite this management refused to enter into negotiations and dismissed union concerns and instead imposed the pay increase on workers. While Torus Group is determined to continue to force employees into below inflation pay increases, their austerity measures do not apply to their own board members. Last year the best paid members of the Torus board saw their payments increase by 6.2 per cent. A formal ballot for strike action is currently being prepared and members will begin voting next month, strike action is scheduled to begin in the early summer. If strike action takes place then 22,000 tenants will not receive urgent repairs, while planned maintenance and improvement work will be substantially delayed

Slough facing summer stench as bin workers ballot for strike action (25 Apr) – Unite is preparing to ballot its refuse collection workers in Slough for strike action after a senior steward was suspended and faces dismissal on ‘trumped up charges’ in a row over lunch breaks. The Unite senior steward Peter Nolan at Slough council has been suspended from work on charges of undermining the refuse collection service. Mr Nolan’s suspension concerned management putting pressure on the workforce not to return to the depot for their break and eat their lunch but to remain on the road. However workers have no access to washing facilities and would be forced to consume food in highly unsanitary conditions, with a high chance of contracting diseases. A consultative ballot of Unite members employed on the refuse collection service, has already given their backing to Unite moving to a formal strike ballot if the council dismisses Mr Nolan. Strike action could begin as early as late May/ early June and any action would inevitably lead to resident’s bins being uncollected. Mr Nolan’s hearing is on Tuesday 1 May and if he is dismissed Unite will immediately move to ballot for strike action read more

Support Ian Allinson: Protesters accuse Fujitsu of victimising whistleblowers read more. Keep up to date with Unite: Our union in Fujitsu website. Protest outside Japanese Embassy 12noon Thursday April 5th – 101-104 Piccadilly, Mayfair, London W1J 7JT Facebook event



Regional pay briefings begin next week (27 Apr) – PCS reps’ pay briefing meetings are taking place across the UK from Monday (30) as we step up our campaign for a fully-funded 5% pay rise. Our annual delegate conference in Brighton next month will vote on a motion on whether to ballot for strike action to force the government to pay our members in the civil service and related areas what they deserve. We have engaged in talks with ministers on our pay claim as recently as last month. However, the government has informed us that it has only budgeted for a 1% pay deal read more

Strong support for Acas members taking action (27 Apr) – There has been strong support for PCS members who work as conciliators at Acas who started  industrial action this week in a long-running dispute over the imposition of detrimental changes made by conciliation service management. Our members began action short of strike on Wednesday (25 April), including no obligation to undertake any reactive or proactive work on fast-track early conciliation cases or employment tribunal cases. Our conciliator members are also due to take a day’s strike action on 11 May. Chair of the PCS Parliamentary Group, Chris Stephens sent a solidarity message, along with our national executive committee and campaign group Barac UK. PCS Home Office HQ assistant secretary Guy Brewer sent a message which read: “Stay strong and keep up the fight. Together we will win against a management intent on attacking terms and conditions across the public sector under the auspice of ‘modernisation’.” Email your message of support to [email protected] and [email protected] Use the hashtag #NoAcasCuts. Donate to the PCS Fighting Fund to support members taking action

Campaign for ex-Carillion staff to be brought in-house at the British Museum Sign our online petition



Strike dates announced at Hull College Group in jobs row (24 Apr) – UCU members at the Hull College Group will walk out on strike for an initial three days in May in a row over plans to axe hundreds of staff. UCU members at all three sites (Hull, Harrogate and Goole) will take strike action on Wednesday 9 May and then for two consecutive days the following week on Thursday 17 and Friday 18 May read more. Messages of support to Dave Langcaster via email [email protected]

Sign this petition to stop the anti-union dirty tricks in the Coventry University Group – We the undersigned condemn the management of the CU Group, a subsidiary company of Coventry University, who have sought to block UCU from applying for recognition by setting up a company union and recognising it



Hull recycling workers strike again for sick pay – Branch appeals for donations to hardship fund as workers start two weeks on the picket line for sick pay from international company worth hundreds of millions. Recycling workers working for FCC Environment in Hull are striking again from May 1st-14th for decent pay sick pay, and are asking for donations to their hardship fund. Please send messages of solidarity and financial support to the Wilmington Strikers c/o Adrian Kennett Hull City UNISON 39, Alfred Gelder Street, Hull HU1 2AG. Please make cheques payable to UNISON Hull City Branch read more

FCC strikers joined by construction workers who walked out on May 1st on nearby Spencer site
FCC strikers joined by construction workers who walked out on May 1st on nearby Spencer site

Sign petition: Support sacked NHS Midwife Jane Greaves

Sign petition: End victimisation of trade unionists at Belle Vue Buses in Manchester

Support the Birmingham Homecare Workers read more on Birmingham Unison website Facebook page



Thomas Bennett teachers in Crawley vote overwhelmingly for strike action over funding cuts and job losses (2 May) – Teachers working at Thomas Bennett Community College in Tilgate, Crawley have voted to take strike action. Members of the National Education Union (NEU), voted by 99% in favour of the action, with a turnout of 89%. The school, operated by The Kemnal Academies Trust (TKAT) has threatened to make teachers redundant and make drastic funding cuts to areas such as support for children with special educational needs (SEN). Regional Secretary, Paul McLaughlin said: “This overwhelming result shows the enormous strength of feeling that members have over this devastating issue. We’re calling on the employer to come to the table with serious plans to save this school, otherwise we will be forced to take significant action.” This follows a recent public meeting where 150 members of the school community including parents, pupils and staff came together with local councillors to oppose these plans by the academy trust. The union has confirmed that any action will be non-disruptive of exams. Local Representative and English Teacher in the school, Alex Ramiz said: “Through this ballot result our members are sending a clear message to The Kemnal Academies Trust that they do not accept their outrageous proposals for running our school into the ground. They will take strike action unless TKAT come up with a more workable solution.” NEU Regional Officer, Glenn Kelly added: “TKAT have choices. They have £7 million of reserves they can use to save this school; the Chief Executive is paid £165,000 a year and they can renegotiate the terms of their PFI contract which costs £1 million per year. So far, they have been unwilling to consider these alternatives, and prefer to make our members redundant instead. These decisions would leave vulnerable children in the school without adequate levels of support.” Angela Newman of the Crawley Community Action Group, a parent led body formed to help fight the cuts to the school, stated; “I am one of the many parents who are concerned about Thomas Bennett and are determined to save the school. I want to speak up to say that we fully support the teachers who have balloted for action. It’s a shame that it has to get to this but, like us parents they are motivated only to save our school and to be able to provide the children with the education they deserve.”

Plans for strikes over low pay at five East Sussex schools – Teachers at five schools across East Sussex are set to go on strike over being “denied recommended national rates” of pay. The National Education Union (NEU) has called for strikes at Priory School in Lewes, Uckfield Community Technology College, St Catherine’s College in Eastbourne, Peacehaven Community School and Seaford Head School to take place on Tuesday and on May 3. Teaching staff at Seaford Primary School were also meant to join them but have now called off the strike after management at the school agreed to meet the their pay requests read more on The Argus website

Support the London teachers’ strikes: Organising action, winning for education – Over the last few months, some tremendous campaigns – and some important victories – have been organised across the London Region by the National Education Union. Some campaigns can be won just by organisation and good arguments – but it sometimes needs the threat of collective industrial action to make sure those arguments are heard! Here are a few examples    Campaign against Newham academies boosted by victories

Current London strikes – Connaught Waltham Forest May 1-3



GMB Ambulance Staff Victory in Parliament (Apr 27) – double GMB victory as MPs back ‘protect the protectors’ bill with tougher measures on sexual assault. Emergency services staff are one step close to the protection they need on the job, says GMB. GMB, the union for NHS workers, is celebrating a double victory for members after the ‘protect the protectors’ Bill won cross-party support from MPs today – with new measures to punish sexual attacks on emergency workers included read more



Prison officers take legal action over pensions – The POA has started the process of initiating Employment Tribunal proceedings which will challenge the introduction of a new pension scheme for Prison Officers in 2015. It is anticipated that more than 3,500 POA members will join in the proceedings read more



Firefighters in the West Midlands to ballot for strike action (25 Apr) – Firefighters and emergency control operators in the West Midlands will ballot for strike action in an escalating row over the imposition of new contracts, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has said today. Contracts introduced by West Midlands Fire Authority mean new firefighters entering the service will have to take on work outside the agreed role of a firefighter. The contracts would allow the employer to unilaterally change the work of firefighters at any time breaching nationally negotiated agreements with the union. The FBU has demanded the contracts be withdrawn immediately. The news comes amid growing tensions between firefighters and the fire authority over a number of issues including the imposition of non-fire service work, dictatorial management practices and interference with day to day trade union activities. Union reps have been threatened with discipline for conducting health and safety investigations as they are entitled to do under the law. Andrew Scattergood, chair of the FBU in the West Midlands, said: “The new contracts give management an unhealthy amount of power to dictate the work firefighters do. The so-called ‘Labour led’ fire authority is creating a two-tier workforce between those who are contracted to do any work and those who have contracts that the public would expect a firefighter to have. It is a classic divide and conquer strategy…”

Sign petition: Stop West Midlands Firefighters being taken away from the frontline! #FiredUp



Al Jazeera staff prepare for strike action over pay (1 May) – Union members at Al Jazeera English in the heart of London are preparing for their first ever strike. The dispute is over the company’s failure to offer a pay rise over four long years. Working together, members of BECTU and the NUJ will stage a 24-hour strike on Wednesday 9 May running from a minute past midnight until 23.59 hours. The members set to take across work in all grades within news production and engineering. The 24-hour strike will be followed by continuous industrial action from 10 May which will see the implementation of a work to rule, withdrawal of goodwill, a refusal to act up in senior positions or to train new starters. These are just some of 12 measures which will be enforced to underline the determination of union members to bring an end to the annual pay review drought read more



PR workers told to contact NUJ over pay discrimination (2 May) – The gender pay gap in the PR and comms industry is 21 per cent, an increase from 2016, according to the PR and Communications census produced by industry body PRCA and PRWeek. The gap has grown from 17.8 per cent in 2016 and is the equivalent of £11,364 – or £2,253 more than it was two years ago read more



Support the Picturehouse workers and sacked reps – Read the latest on Brixton Ritzy Facebook Page and those of Hackney, Crouch End, Central, Dulwich East and Duke of York Brighton

Donate to the Picturehouse Cinema strike fund: https://www.crowdpac.co.uk/campaigns/250/picturehousestrike



BREAKING NEWS!! Dagenham Tesco distribution staff to take strike action over pay (2 May) – Workers in Tesco’s Dagenham distribution centre are to take 24 hour strike action commencing on Thursday 17 May 2018 and running into Friday, 18 May. The strike action is taking place as a result of a dispute over the 2017 Pay Review. Usdaw hopes that the company will now bring forward a suitable offer so that industrial action can be averted to avoid disruption read more



University cleaners biggest ever outsourced workers strike in UK higher education – University of London workers organised by the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB) held the biggest-ever strike of outsourced workers in UK higher education history. Over 100 cleaners, porters, security officers, receptionists, gardeners, postroom staff and audiovisual staff walked out on 25 and 26 April after a near unanimous vote in favour of industrial action. The workers, who are employed by a number of outsourcing companies that have contracts with the University of London central administration, are demanding to be made direct employees of the university, and for equal terms and conditions with those that are directly employed read more   Donate to strike fund


United Voices of the World

BREAKING NEWS: The cleaners at Kensington and Chelsea town halls – all of whom are migrant workers and members of UVW – are set to strike for the London Living Wage of £10.20 per hour. They are currently only paid the minimum, poverty wage of £7.83 per hour. Stay tuned for strike dates and solidarity actions! Once again low paid migrant and precarious workers are taking the fight to the bosses! www.facebook.com/uvwunion



Other news


Watch the play about the 1970s Grunwick Strike ‘We Are The Lions, Mr Manager!’ (hosted by Coventry TUC) – 7.30pm Friday 4th May Belgrade Theatre, Belgrade Square, CV1 1GS Coventry Facebook event




Blacklisting & Victimisation

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)

Blacklisted t-shirts available at: https://shop.hopenothate.org.uk/component/hikashop/product/78-blacklisted-t-shirt

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

Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNcgrNs6pB8

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

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog





Turkey: Open Letter To PM Re Water As Weapon read more on GMB website

Support the Lidl strike in Belgium read more

Interview: Strikes and political crisis in Slovenia read more







12 TUC demonstration ‘A new deal for working people’ https://www.tuc.org.uk/events/new-deal-working-people-tuc-march-rally



30 NHS 70th anniversary rally



7 National Shop Stewards Network 2018 Annual Conference 11am-4.30pm Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, Holborn, London



9 NSSN TUC Rally in Manchester



PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]


TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts


ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE