This week’s NSSN bulletin headlines with the 4-day PCS strike starting today at DVLA after over 500 cases of Covid were reported there since September. The NSSN gives our full solidarity and support to PCS and its members at DVLA as they fight for workplace safety
PCS website: (1 Apr) Support PCS members at DVLA striking 6-9 April over health and safety concerns – Over the past week, PCS has been in intensive talks with the DVLA to try to reach agreement to address our members’ health and safety concerns and remove the necessity for taking industrial action. Though we welcome the progress made to date, the lack of immediate moves from the employer to reduce numbers on site means we must now progress to industrial action, in the form of a strike among operational staff required on site from 6 April. Our ballot period and our intensive negotiations have seen movement on the following issues towards our ultimate goal of making the site safer:
- A reduction in the capacity of the site by removing over 300 desks
- A revision of risk assessments which has led to a further 300 staff being sent home. This is in part due to a further consideration given to pregnant women and those who live with vulnerable people
- A commitment on how to proceed in the talks over the coming months, in terms of extending home working, safety on site and any potential increase in the numbers of staff on site when it is safe to do so.
We are asking members who are in operational grades and required to work on site to take strike action from Tuesday to Friday next week (6-9 April). We are asking these members not to attend work for these days. We are convinced that the DVLA is able to give more than it is willing to at this stage and we believe that a strong show of strike action next week will help tip the balance to getting management to reduce numbers in the medium term and make the site safe.
Well supported strike action will demonstrate the depth of feeling amongst members and strengthen the union in further negotiations with the employer. The bigger the action, the better the deal we will be able to achieve when talks resume after the strike. We will issue strike guidance to staff this afternoon, detailing the action and how members can access strike pay. Owing to the pandemic, we will not be having physical picket lines. We will instead be hosting virtual rallies and events next week. We will publicise these to members ahead of next week
Stop victimisation of union reps
Donate to the reinstatement campaign of Declan Clune RMT bus driver in Southampton (on behalf of Declan Clune and all RMT Southampton District Bus and Coach Branch members). Email message of support: [email protected]
RMT to hold demonstration in Southampton in support of Declan Clune on Monday 12 April (8 Apr) – RMT to hold demonstration in Southampton on Monday 12 April over victimisation and sacking of leading bus activist. BUS UNION RMT will be holding a demonstration over the victimisation of Southampton bus branch secretary Declan Clune who has been dismissed for reporting concerns to Network Rail around a bridge being struck by vehicles. The protest will take place on Monday 12th April 2021 between 09:00 and 11:00 at Bargate, High Street, Southampton SO14 2DJ. The action will comply with all current Covid-19 rules and guidance. The demonstration is part of a high-profile publicity campaign in support of Declan’s reinstatement by the employer, Bluestar. RMT is currently in dispute with the company and is balloting bus driver members for strike and other forms of industrial action read more
Donate to solidarity campaign of Moe Muhsin Manir Unite bus rep Email messages of support to Moe: [email protected]
Defend victimised reps – online NEU conference fringe meeting: Thursday 8th April Facebook event
Hear from some of these reps: NEU – Exec members Kirstie Paton and Tracy McGuire, Huddersfield rep Louise Lewis, Shropshire rep John Boken, Redbridge rep Kieran Mahon, Hackney rep Iain Forsythi (Leaways), plus victimised RMT union reps Gary Carney and Declan Clune
Fight Tory 1% NHS Pay Insult
Facebook Live event: Organising during COVID (by Strike Map UK, NHS Workers Say NO to Public Sector pay inequality) – 6pm Wednesday 31st March
The Sparks launch fight that forces bosses back de-skilling at Hinkley Point but struggle continues
Rank and file construction electricians have launched a struggle against what they see as multi-skilling by bosses at the massive site Hinkley Point to build the nuclear power station, estimated to cost £22.5 billion.
It is reported that an agreement to employ about 500 electrical apprentices had been reneged on and instead a training course for ‘Support Operatives’ is being put on. This would mean lower-paid unskilled workers being employed instead of skilled electricians.
The campaign has already seen protests in London, Manchester, Liverpool and Newcastle, Scotland and Wales and last week there was a first demonstration at Hinkley. Unite now report that the training course at Hinkley has been stopped, which is a great victory. But the fight goes on, particularly targeting NG Baileys and Balfour Beatty, until de-skilling is totally off the agenda.
Solidarity to the Sparks!
For details of Sparks protests, follow NO TO ESO (UNSKILLED LABOUR) Facebook page
Support the NSSN
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. Feel free to use this affiliation letter
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]
The NSSN is continuing to report on how workers are organising during the coronavirus pandemic
The NSSN is opening up our weekly email bulletin, website and social media platforms of Facebook and twitter to provide a public forum for workers during the Coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis. We want to be a place where we can all share queries and experiences that workers are facing in their workplaces. These include reports of action taken by workers to defend themselves from their employers.
You can read about many of these actions in our weekly bulletin and out social media groups, especially our Facebook group: NSSN – defend workers’ rights under Coronavirus.
You can also send the NSSN your reports and queries via our website, twitter – @NSSN_AntiCuts and email – [email protected]
We welcome the information being sent to union members concerning the spread of coronavirus, including the Accord, Advance, AEP, AFA-CWA, ASLEF, BDA, BECTU Sector of Prospect, BFAWU, BOS-TU, College of Podiatry, Community, CSP, EIS, Equity, FBU, FDA, GMB, HCSA, MU, NAHT, NASUWT, National Society for Education in Art and Design (NSEAD), Nautilus International, NEU, NGSU, NUJ, PFA, Prospect, RCM, SoR, TSSA, TUC, UCU, UNISON, Unite, URTU, USDAW, WGGB and the RCN
But it is absolutely vital that unions retain their ability to organise and act independently in defence of their members and workers generally. This includes the right of unions to take industrial action. We are already aware of workers being forced to take unofficial action on health and safety grounds. We also believe that unions should have oversight of any government bans on protests and picketing. This is the same Tory government that tabled more new anti-union laws in December’s Queens Speech last December and cannot be trusted.
We believe that it is essential that workers are protected during this worrying period and are not impacted, whether in terms of their safety as well as their pay and employment rights. The Tory government have announced measures that include some workers receiving 80% of their wages. This furlough scheme was due to end but has now been extended because of the 2nd lockdown.
However, we believe that no worker should pay the price for any spread of the virus. We say: work or full pay. Any worker who is required not to attend work or is unable to do so because of COVID, childcare or transport closures should receive full pay and not be forced to take annual leave. But unions have to remain vigilant that any government payments actually happen and also covers all workers, including those in precarious employment such as zero-hour contracts and in the gig economy.
We have drafted this model motion which we’ve made into a bulletin that can be downloaded and printed off to be distributed. Feel free to use in your union and trades council, in totality or partially to highlight the issues that need to be addressed.
Keep an eye out for other Facebook and social media groups and pages that are being created. The Coronavirus Support Group for Workers has been set up on Facebook and is a useful forum and you can catch up on disputes at Strike Map UK
RMT backs Eurostar support calls (5 Apr) – Eurostar union RMT backs calls this morning for support to save vital rail link. With the Government set to publish its plans for the return of international travel today (Monday) Eurostar union RMT has backed growing calls this morning from across for the industry for the Government to put in place a specific support package for Eurostar to ensure that as travel resumes the lowest carbon international travel option remains available to the British public read more
Scotrail conductors standing firm and united (4 Apr) – Scotrail conductors standing firm and united on second day of strike action in fight for workplace justice. RAIL UNION RMT said that Scotrail conductors are standing firm and united on a second day of strike action in a fight for workplace equality and justice over enhanced payments for rest day working. RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said; “Our Scotrail Conductor members are standing firm and united again this morning in a fight for fairness and equality for a group of essential workers who deserve better than the abuse and contempt that has been dished out to them by their employer…”:-
- 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 28th March 2021
- 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 4th April 2021
- 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 11th April 2021
- 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 18th April 2021
- 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 25th April 2021
- 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 2nd May 2021 read more
RMT condemns Government’s West Coast Main Line plans (1 Apr) – RMT condemns the Government’s plans to hand the West Coast Main Line to First Trenitalia for a decade of profiteering. RAIL UNION RMT responded to the DfT’s announcement that it intends to award a decade long contract to First Trenitalia to run the West Coast Main Line, by calling for an end to its obsession with privatisation, and for the service to instead be taken into public ownership read more
RMT move to ballot members over strike action at Stena Line (1 Apr) – STENA LINE UNION RMT today announced that it was moving to ballot its seafarer and port members over the company’s proposals on sick pay. A company sick pay scheme, agreed with the recognised trade unions, was in place for seafarers and port workers in Stena Line until the start of the pandemic when the employer unilaterally scrapped it, forcing staff infected with or displaying symptoms of Coronavirus to rely on Statutory Sick Pay read more
RMT members to take industrial action at Unipart Rail Doncaster – RMT members working at Unipart Rail Doncaster will be taking industrial action next month following a ballot after a derisory pay offer from the company. Unipart Rail’s Doncaster warehouse supplies parts to the rail industry. With effect from 00:01 hours on Friday 2nd April 2021, until further notice, RMT members working at Unipart Rail Doncaster are instructed:-
- Not to work any non-contractual overtime
- Not to work on a rest day read more
Fight job cuts at Queens Park – In January, LU announced a plan to cut train driver jobs at Queen’s Park depot. They’ve refused to back away from that, so our driver members will now ballot for industrial action. The ballot opens on 25/03 and closes on 08/04. Resist the cuts, vote yes! Read more
Defend Declan Clune: RMT to ballot for action over victimisation and sacking of leading bus activist – BUS UNION RMT confirmed today that it has declared a dispute and will be balloting bus driver members for strike and other forms of industrial action over the victimisation of Southampton bus branch secretary Declan Clune who has been dismissed for reporting concerns around a bridge being struck by vehicles to Network Rail. The union will also be launching a high-profile publicity campaign in public and media forums including demonstrations in support of Declan’s reinstatement by the company read more
Sign petition: to The Mayor of London and the London Assembly – End the privatisation of cleaning at Transport for London
Please Support RMT Members With No Wages! – RMT London Transport Region Zero Hours & Self-Employed members need our Solidarity Now! Many of our regions self-employed members and those on zero hours have not any had wages for 2 months since March. They have been abandoned by London Underground, TfL, the London Mayor and their agency employers. They MUST NOT be abandoned by us too; their RMT sisters and brothers! The RMT London Transport Regional Council and LU Engineering RMT branch are calling out to all branches, members and friends to dig deep and give meaningful solidarity to our hard pressed members facing poverty and possibly eviction from their homes. To help support by donating to the fund or to ask after support for yourself, please email: [email protected] read more
Scotrail – joint unions statement (30 Mar) – Today [Tuesday 30 March 2021] Abellio Scotrail offered a self-financing pay rise of tens of pounds to the RMT, the TSSA, Unite, and ASLEF (Fleet) members. Abellio ScotRail has continually failed to engage in any productive way with the trade unions. Abellio has claimed it is under instructions from the Scottish government not to award any pay rise to rail workers. The Scottish government is actively interfering in collective bargaining. This is a slap in the face to rail workers who have worked throughout the pandemic read more
TSSA frustrated at lack of travel trade support (5 Apr) – Transport and travel union TSSA says today’s government press conference was a missed opportunity to steady the travel trade and hits back at claims by the Prime Minister about Transport for London read more
First Anniversary of Belly Mujinga’s Death – Union Redoubles Justice Calls (5 Apr) – TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has said his entire union will be thinking of Belly Mujinga today (5 April) exactly one year since the transport worker died as a result of Covid-19. The union is calling for people to take a minute to think of Belly and other front-line workers who have died of Covid-19 since the pandemic began. TSSA has strongly backed calls for a coroner’s inquest into Belly’s death, with Cortes saying that there “must be justice for Belly” – for the sake of her family and all transport workers. North London Coroner – Andrew Walker – is currently deciding whether to hold an inquest into the death of the 47-year-old who was a TSSA member read more
Support the indefinite bus strike in Manchester – follow Go Ahead STOP the attacks on Queens Road Facebook page
Go North West negotiations collapse without agreement as Manchester bus strikes set to continue (1 Apr) – Protracted peace talks between management at Go North West and Unite, the UK’s leading union, have collapsed without agreement today (Thursday 1 April), meaning that the long running bus strike is set to continue for the foreseeable future. The dispute is a result of the company deciding to fire and rehire its bus drivers and attempt to force them to accept vastly inferior contracts. Over 400 drivers who are members of Unite, the UK’s largest union, have been on all out strike since Sunday 28 February. Saturday (4 April) will mark the end of the fifth week of strike action. Under Go North West’s (which is part of the multi-billion pound Go Ahead group) fire and rehire plans, bus drivers who earn on average of £24,000 will be forced to work longer for no additional pay. Unite has calculated that Go North West is expecting its drivers to undertake 130 hours of unpaid work per annum, resulting in drivers being £2,500 a year worse off. Go North West is intent on tearing up the existing sick pay policy, which will result in a 67 per cent cut in sick pay for workers with over five years’ service read more
London United bus strikes to intensify as new depots join strike action (1 Apr) – The increasingly bitter dispute, involving London United, a subsidiary of the French owned company RATP, is set to intensify, after bus drivers at two more garages voted to join the industrial action over pay and attacks on conditions. Drivers at both Stamford Brook and Hounslow Heath have voted to join the industrial action. It will mean that further strikes beginning on Thursday 15 April will involve London United drivers at all seven of its garages. The five depots already taking strike action are Fulwell, Hounslow, Park Royal, Shepherd’s Bush and Tolworth garages. These five garages are on strike today (Thursday 1 April) and will also be on strike on Wednesday 7 April read more
BREAKING NEWS!! Devonport naval base faces disruption as tugboat crew strike for two days in rostering row (6 Apr) – Two days of strike action this week by Plymouth tugboat crews in a rostering dispute will cause serious disruption to naval traffic in the docks, Unite the union warned today (Tuesday 6 April). About 40 tractor tug crew members employed by Serco Marine at Devonport’s naval base will strike from 07.00 on Friday (9 April) until 06.59 on Saturday (10 April) in the long-running dispute over the imposition of a new three weeks ‘on’ and three weeks ‘off’ roster. Unite said that there were serious health & safety risks for its members, including excessive tiredness, with the new three week system introduced in December. It also has adverse implications for their annual leave entitlement. The strike will cause serious disruption to naval vessels, including submarines, which need the tugs to get into the docks and out again into open sea read more
BREAKING NEWS!! Coffee giant faces consumer backlash over threat to ‘fire and rehire’ 300 Banbury workers, warns Unite (6 Apr) – Coffee-drinking supermarket customers will be a key element in the ‘fire and rehire’ dispute affecting nearly 300 employees at the JDE (Jacobs Douwe Egberts) site in Banbury, Oxfordshire, as the firm faces reputational damage due to its high-handed tactics. Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, warned today (Tuesday 6 April) that the nation’s coffee drinkers needed to have confidence that the products – Tassimo, Kenco and L’OR Coffee – they were buying were produced by a firm with excellent ethical standards. Unite said there was ‘a simmering managerial toxic culture’ at the Ruscote Avenue site which employs a diverse workforce. Unite said its claims of a such a culture stem from allegations – that have come to the union’s attention – that at the 2019 Christmas party there were claims of assault and the police were called to the pub to deal with alleged intoxicated managers. Unite’s members are currently voting on whether to take industrial action, with the option to strike, in response to the Dutch-owned company issuing notice of dismissal and engagement for 291 employees. The ballot closes on Thursday 15 April read more
Unite calls for urgent talks on job security with new owners of SSE Contracting (1 Apr) – Unite the union has called for urgent talks with the new owners of SSE Contracting Ltd in relation to future job security and employment conditions. Unite has about 350 members, mainly electricians working on building and maintenance projects; and street lighting operatives, working for local councils and on Private Finance Initiative (PFI) projects. The new owner of SSE Contracting, which is a long-established division of SSE PLC (Scottish and Southern Energy), will be investment company Aurelius UK read more
Heathrow workers secure pay offer as strikes are called off (1 Apr) – Strikes due to begin at Heathrow Airport tomorrow (2 April) have been postponed after an offer on pay and future working conditions was agreed following extensive negotiations. The workers, who are members of Unite, the UK’s principal aviation union, employed by Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL) had already taken nine days of strike action in a dispute over the company’s decision to fire and rehire its entire workforce. A series of 41 separate targeted strikes in a 24 day period were due to begin tomorrow (Friday 2 April) which would have caused considerable disruption to the airport’s safe operation read more
Strike dates set as council heroes resist cuts to pay and conditions (1 Apr) – Council workers providing essential services through the health crisis to the residents of Thurrock will strike for three weeks because of Thurrock Council’s plans to brutally cut their pay and conditions. Refuse workers, highway maintenance and street cleaners will take strike action from Tuesday 13 April until Friday 7 May, excluding 3 May. The very workers who have been supporting residents, by providing key services throughout the current health crisis, are furious that they are now the target of proposed cuts of between £2,000 – £3,500 a year for refuse workers, highway maintenance and street cleaners. Meanwhile, the council has not proposed any cuts to the pay and conditions of senior management. Lyn Carpenter, the chief executive earns almost £200,000 a year. https://www.yourthurrock.com/2019/04/09/thurrock-council-rich-list-exposes-top-bosses-pay/ read more
Royal London hospital patients facing meal disruption in Serco bullying and roster dispute (31 Mar) – Patients at the Royal London hospital in Whitechapel could face disruption at mealtimes this spring, if workers employed by outsourcer Serco take strike action in a dispute over bullying and the imposition of new rotas. The workers, who are members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, and are based in the hospital’s back of house catering department, responsible for getting meals to patients on wards, have been attempting to resolve the problems of bullying and a chaotic roster without success since July. The workforce had a new rota imposed on them, without agreement, which has been described as ‘chaotic and unworkable’, with irregular shifts spread over a 15 week period, including split rest days, which make it impossible for members to juggle childcare and caring responsibilities or achieve any work/life balance. Some members have been forced to drop out of college as they can no longer predict when they will have to be at work read more
Unite launches hotline & ad campaign to get a ‘new deal’ for Amazon workers (31 Mar) – Unite, Britain’s leading union, has begun a major newspaper and digital advertising campaign today (Wednesday 31 March), to alert Amazon workers about a confidential whistle-blowing hotline which has opened in the UK & Ireland (see notes to editors). Amazon workers can blow the whistle and expose poor treatment free from reprisals by calling 08000 14 14 61 in the UK or 1800 851 268 for the Republic of Ireland or by visiting https://actiononamazon.org/hotline/. The hotline coincides with the launch of the campaign alliance ‘Action on Amazon’ that is demanding a ‘new deal’ for Amazon workers, including a union and a greater share of the firm’s enormous profits. Launch events will take place across the UK and Ireland this week including in London, Cardiff, Edinburgh, Belfast and Dublin. Against a backdrop of reports about poor working conditions, Amazon workers have been essential during the Covid crisis. The company increased its permanent workforce by one third (10,000) in 2020 as well as taking on 20,000 additional seasonal staff. The company almost doubled its profit in 2020 compared to 2019 and Jeff Bezos is now ranked the world’s richest man. But Amazon stops any attempts by workers to gain a collective voice of their own. It has failed to sign either the United Nations Global Compact or the Ethical Trading Initiative – bodies that recognise the right of all workers to a collective voice and which are signed up to by most of the biggest names on the high street. The union is now calling on Amazon’s Jeff Bezos to sign up to a ‘new deal’, including commitments that recognise workers’ rights to unionise. Unite executive officer Sharon Graham said: “Unite has launched a major ad campaign to alert Amazon workers about a confidential hotline to blow the whistle on poor treatment and working practices…” read more
Unite calls on Babcock Marine to step ‘back from the brink’ as Clyde nuclear naval base workers strike – Hundreds of Unite the union members based at the Coulport and Faslane nuclear naval bases on the Clyde are set to take part in rolling industrial action today (12 March) from 10 a.m. The strike action follows the ‘overwhelming’ support from its 1000-strong membership where Unite members voted by 95% in support of strike action on a 65% turnout. The rolling strike action will also be held in conjunction with a continuous call out ban and ban on all overtime read more
Billionaire Warren Buffett linked to Leicester SPS workers striking over ‘brutal’ fire and rehire cuts – Warren Buffett, whose net worth surpassed £73 billion this month, is linked to Leicester SPS Technologies’ workers on strike over ‘brutal’ fire and rehire cuts, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Thursday 25 March). Around 200 Unite members at SPS’s Barkby Road site are on strike over fire and rehire proposals that would result in reductions to overtime pay, sick pay, paid breaks and shift premiums amounting to annual wage losses of up to £3,000. The company is owned by American billionaire Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway – a multinational conglomerate – and produces aerospace parts for companies such as Airbus, Boeing, GE and Rolls-Royce. The Barkby Road workers began discontinuous strike action on 12 March, but will now strike daily from the 29 March until 3 June, effectively bringing the factory’s operations to a halt read more
Living Wage Foundation urged to end Goodlord accreditation over ‘brutal’ London pay cuts as indefinite strikes begin – The Living Wage Foundation has been urged to end its accreditation of London-based lettings software provider Goodlord over ‘brutal’ £6,000 pay cuts that have forced staff to begin indefinite strike action, Unite said today (Tuesday 2 March). Around 20 Unite members employed in Goodlord’s London-based referencing department, which provides tenant checks for estate agents, had been on discontinuous strike since 22 February. On March 1, however, the workers escalated their industrial action to an indefinite strike, meaning they will not return to work until the dispute is resolved. The dispute centres on fire and rehire plans that would see the pay of Goodlord’s referencing staff plummet from £24,000 to £18,000. Goodlord is accredited as a Living Wage Foundation employer. However, the cuts would see Goodlord’s referencing staff earn less than the foundation’s London living wage of £21,157. Referencing staff are the only workers employed by the company to have been singled out for fire and rehire attacks read more
Messages of support to [email protected]
- Email complaints to [email protected]; tweet complaints to @sogoodlord
- Strike fund donations to Unite LE/7098L London ITC Branch, sort code 60-83-01, account 20303680, reference Goodlord
Sainsbury’s faces South East Easter shortages as DHL strikes over ‘union busting’ loom – Sainsbury’s is facing Easter shortages at its stores across the South East, including parts of London, after DHL staff at its Dartford regional distribution centre voted for strike action over ‘union busting’, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Friday 12 February). The Dartford strike ballot was called after a Unite steward, who was providing support to a member of staff during an investigation hearing, was suspended for challenging a DHL managers’ version of events. The reason given for the suspension by the manager was that the Unite steward was being aggressive – an accusation flatly contradicted by a neutral member of staff who was present at the meeting as a third party. After the vote in favour of strike action, more than 350 DHL staff are now poised to stage walk out’s throughout March, April and May read more
NHS bosses probed on profit margins of £755,000 contract for Reading hospital security guards – NHS bosses are being quizzed on the profit margins of the outsourced contract for the security guards at Reading hospital, who are currently locked in a ‘David and Goliath’ pay battle. Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust is paying Kingdom Service Group Ltd a total of £755,763-a-year to provide security for the trust. The security guards are currently on strike until early March over the Kingdom management’s failure to make a decent pay offer for 2020. Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, is now questioning whether the contract is ‘value for money’ and how big the profits margins are for Kingdom Service Group – a major corporate service provider with a £100 million plus turnover. Unite wants to know if it would not be better value for the taxpayer if the contract was brought back in-house which would then eradicate the hefty built-in profit margins that the outsourced company now enjoys…The 20 security guards have been taking strike action since mid-December and the third wave of strike action will run from 19.00 on Friday 12 February and ending at 19.00 on Sunday 7 March. This follows on from already announced strikes from 07:00 today (Monday 8 February) until 19.00 on Friday 12 February read more Text solidarity messages via Jessica 07718668497 and donate to strike fund: Acc. No.: 20173991 Sort Code: 60-83-01. Sign petition to Mark Wallace , Kingdom Service Group Managing Director: Pay Royal Berkshire Hospital security staff a wage they can live on
Scunthorpe scaffolders step up strike action at British Steel site – The British Steel plant in Scunthorpe faces further disruption this month as scaffolders based at the site, announced a further six days of strike action in a dispute over pay. The workers have already taken four days of strike action and will mount a further 48 hour strike beginning at 05:30 on Monday 8 February. Unite has now announced a 48 hour strike to begin at 05:30 on Monday 15 February, a 24 hour hours strike beginning at 05:30 on Thursday 18 February, then a further 48 hour strike beginning at 05:30 on Monday 22 February and finally a 24 hour strike from 05:30 on Thursday 25 February. The 50 plus scaffolders, involved in the strike action are employed by contractor Brand Energy to undertake maintenance on over 500 scaffolding structures that are on the British Steel site read more
Read document by Unite Community Cumbria branch: ‘Covid and the Tories – a world beating catastrophe’
PCS to go to EHRC over lack of action on racism allegations in Cabinet Office (31 Mar) – Following correspondence with the Cabinet Office, in which we set out our grave concerns over claims of racism and bullying in the government department, PCS has concluded there is no point in trying to change things in the department by further talks with senior managers. Therefore we are looking at legal action, making a referral to the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and working with MPs to expose the appalling situation in the Cabinet Office read more
HMRC members, don’t break the Home Office strike – Some PCS HMRC members are being asked to break the strike by our Border Force members at Heathrow Airport where we began a work to rule and overtime ban yesterday, followed by a strike from 1-7 April. We understand that HMRC has been asked to make staff available to provide cover for the Home Office during the industrial action. The industrial action is as a result of a legitimate trade dispute with the Home Office. The strike by nearly 450 PCS members is in response to the imposition of new rosters which are considered to be unworkable. The rosters have resulted in travellers waiting in queues of more than seven hours to have their passports checked read more
Please sign this PCS petition to Save Ealing Tax Office – we ask that you sign this eaction to the Chancellor calling on him to intervene urgently, to halt the office closures and redundancies, and consult fully with the union and work to retain the experience and vital knowledge contained within Ealing Tax Office. Support our call to SAVE JOBS, SAVE SERVICES and STOP THE CLOSURES
Support the GMB strike against ‘fire and rehire at British Gas – send a message of support and donate to the GMB British Gas ‘Fire and Rehire’ Strike Fund
British Gas engineers to strike on April 14 – new date they face mass sackings (31 Mar) – Sacking highly skilled and experienced workers because they won’t submit to reckless corporate bullying ultimate measure of failure of Mr O’Shea. GMB British Gas members will strike for the 43rd day on Wednesday, April 14 – the new date they face mass sackings if they don’t accept imposed pay cuts of 15 per cent and other changes. Engineers were sent termination letters this week by British Gas CEO Chris O’Shea informing them they would be dismissed on April 14 rather than the original date of April 1. No explanation was offered for the change in dates. In July, British Gas announced engineers who refused to ‘voluntarily accept’ imposed 15 per cent cuts in pay rates and other changes affecting the time they spend with their families would be sacked. GMB members at British Gas have already taken 42 days of strike action against the pay cuts and fire and rehire notices. In addition, an official national lockout dispute between British Gas and GMB will become effective from April 14 and will include further strike action and action short of a strike read more
Strike action looms at GKN Wheels and Structures (1 Apr) – Members vote overwhelmingly to strike over threat to slash redundancy pay. GMB Union members have voted overwhelmingly to strike at GKN Wheels and Structures in Telford. Both business units at the Telford site – which employs 250 people in the production of wheels for agricultural, construction and mining sectors – voted to pursue strike action following a consultative ballot of its members over proposed cuts to redundancy payments read more
Bristol Water workers set to strike over pay freeze (1 Apr) – Bristol Water boss trousers more than half a million pounds while expecting pandemic heroes to take real terms pay cut. GMB members are Bristol Water will strike on Tuesday [April 6] unless the company ‘gets real’ on its pay offer. The company has imposed a pay freeze and no increase to pension contributions, despite Bristol Water’s essential workers risking their health and that of their families to keep the taps on during the pandemic read more
Government report ‘gaslighting’ Black Asian Minority Ethnic workers and communities (31 Mar) – Paper ‘completely irresponsible and immoral’. GMB Union has described today’s delayed Downing Street Commission on Race and Ethnic Disparities published as ‘gaslighting’ Black Asian Minority and Ethnic workers and communities read more
Self-isolation numbers won’t improve until government raises ‘poverty’ sick pay (1 Apr) – Doing the right thing shouldn’t leave you so skint you can’t feed your family. GMB, Britain’s general union, says low number of people with covid symptoms who get a test or self isolate won’t improve until the Government raises Statutory Sick Pay (SSP). A study by the BMJ this morning suggests just 18 per cent of those with symptoms said they had requested a test, while only 43 per cent with symptoms in the previous seven days adhered to full self-isolation read more
More than 350 deaths and 31,000 infections linked to Covid-19 exposure at work (31 Mar) – Health and social care workers made up 70% of reported occupational deaths, GMB Freedom of Information request reveals. More than 350 deaths and 31,000 infections have been linked to Covid-19 exposure at work, new Health and Safety Executive (HSE) figures reveal. The data, released in response to a GMB Freedom of Information request, shows that 31,000 the suspected cases of occupational exposure to coronavirus were reported to the Health and Safety Executive between 10 April 2020 and 13 March 2021. 367 workers’ deaths were suspected to be linked to workplace exposure to the coronavirus during the same period. The figures likely significantly underestimate the true extent of exposure and deaths among workers, warned the GMB Union. The union called for urgent investment to make workplaces safe and full sick pay cover so that workers can afford to self-isolate read more
Council faces rubbish pile up as GMB Refuse Collectors to strike over pay – “Council happy to allow dispute to escalate into full blown strike action even at risk of deeply upsetting residents”, say GMB Union. Reigate and Banstead faces rubbish pile ups after GMB council workers voted to strike over pay. Talks between the union and the local authority stalled after council bosses refused to meet with mediators ACAS without other parties being present. The majority of GMB members in the council work in refuse collection. Following the breakdown in talks, GMB has now confirmed the following dates for industrial action: Thursday April 8, Friday April 9, Thursday April 15 read more
Us2 launched as next stage of One Team campaign (1 Apr) – UNISON writes to NHS private contractors calling on them to pay Agenda for Change rates to all staff. UNISON has today launched its One Team – Us2 campaign, for contractor staff to be paid the same rates and benefits as their colleagues who are directly employed by the NHS. The union has written to NHS private contractors calling for all members working on NHS contracts to be paid Agenda for Change rates. The previous three-year Agenda for Change pay deal came to an end on 31 March and the union is campaigning for a £2,000 pay rise that is now overdue for all NHS staff read more
University unions and employers meet on pay (1 Apr) – First negotiations see the employers agree that there needs to be a rise in pay for hard-working higher education staff read more
Public service workers aren’t fooled by this April’s pay rise (1 Apr) – Workers across the public sector are losing billions as employers fail to pay a decent wage. The government has today increased its national living wage to £8.91 an hour – an increase that UNISON welcomes, but says is a far cry from what workers need to earn in order to get by and have a decent living standard. According to the Living Wage Foundation, five years on from its introduction, national living wage earners have fallen a total of £10 billion short of what they would have earned if they had been paid the real living wage read more
More than half NHS and social care staff in London considering quitting over pandemic impact (31 Mar) – There’s a real danger many leave the NHS for somewhere they feel more appreciated. NHS and social care staff in London have revealed that they feel let down by the government and unable to cope with work-related stress, according to a survey published today (Wednesday) by UNISON read more
Pay dispute at Cumberland Infirmary takes ugly turn for worse ahead of second round of strike action this week – A pay dispute at strike-hit Cumberland Infirmary has taken an ugly turn for the worse. Whilst hospital workers are planning to begin a second 48-hour strike on Friday (26 March), a new row has erupted over the way hospital domestics say they’re being punished for joining the picket lines. The domestics were among 150 frontline staff employed by private contractor Mitie who took two days of strike action in February and March over missing wages read more
Unison: Support the Birmingham NHS Heartlands Porters Dispute – UNSION members who are Heartlands Hospital Porters are currently taking strike action about the proposed imposition of a new rota. This will result in them working detrimental rotating 8 shifts pattern. The proposed rota impacts on our members health and well being; their caring responsibilities; their work/life balance and results in a significant cut in wages for many read more on Facebook page.
Email message of support to [email protected]
Donate to hardship fund: Unison University Hospitals Birmingham Branch 22536, Unity Trust Bank, Ac: 20403849 Sort Code: 60 83 01
Sign petition: We call upon the Chair of the Trust Jacqui Smith and the Chief Executive David Rosser to halt the imposition of the rota and to not ‘fire and rehire’ their Heartlands Hospital Porters on the 1st Feb. We urge them to ask the senior management to work with UNISON to implement a jointly agreed rota which is based upon a ‘fixed’ shift basis
Full steam ahead to industrial action ballot as members see through BT cash ‘bribe’ – Members across BT, Openreach and EE have delivered a resounding message of defiance after BT’s surprise attempt to kick this year’s pay review into touch by fobbing off employees with one-off cash ‘bung’. Within minutes of management’s disingenuous announcement yesterday (Wednesday) of “an exceptional package for an exceptional year” – and the simultaneous release of a CWU counter-message to members exposing the company’s “desperate move” for exactly what it is – there was no doubting which argument was winning amongst those who really count. Throughout the day all the CWU’s social media channels were bombarded with renewed messages of support from members for the union’s ‘Count Me In’ campaign of resistance against ruthless attacks on job security and hard won terms & conditions that have erupted across the whole of BT Group. In addition to countless furious social media posts, hundreds of emails were also received by the union from members expressing their astonishment and dismay at management’s apparent belief that employee anger over compulsory redundancies and looming site closures can be ‘bought off’ with a £1,000 ‘bribe’. Yesterday evening, no fewer than 14,000 tuned in to a special CWU Facebook Live session across the union’s social media channels – a record breaking real-time viewing figure which has continued to grow throughout today with catch-up views. Poignantly the Facebook Live broadcast took place at the end of the tenth day of industrial action by the unions small but fiercely loyal membership of Repayment Project Engineers (RPEs) in Openreach – themselves fighting against that division’s steadfast refusal to listen to genuine workforce concerns about the imposed regrading of their role. With anger now reaching boiling point across the whole of BT Group at the similar disregard being shown by top bosses to employee dismay at the company’s current trajectory, the union has now set up a special CWU solidarity fund to provide financial support for the 170-strong group of brave RPE strikers. “We will not leave this small group of members isolated,” stresses CWU general secretary Dave Ward. See full details here
New spotlight on ‘Albert’ amid wider ‘race to the bottom’ concerns in Consumer (Apr 1) – The damning findings of a comprehensive CWU survey into members’ experience of the revised ‘operating model’ that was introduced in BT Consumer contact centres just over a year ago have prompted new talks with the company. Despite repeated attempts by the CWU to flag up concerns that the new system in general – and the ‘Albert’ support tool in particular – is routinely failing to provide the seamless guidance to advisors in certain functions that was promised when it was introduced early last year, to date senior management have remained impervious to criticism of the system read more
Post Office members back pay deal – set for big April payout (Apr 1) – Hard-working Post Office members will see significant increases to pay this month, following their approval of a deal combining an across-the-board rise with variable bonus consolidations and lifting guaranteed wages by between 4.7 and 7.1 per cent. In a big show of support for the union, members voted by a 97 per cent majority to endorse the package, which will now be paid into their end-of-April salaries. And, this being their ‘2020’ pay deal, payments are also fully backdated to April 1st 2020 read more
DfC Members and Reps Update (2 Apr) – I wanted to drop you a quick note on some of the issues TUS are dealing with at the moment. Staff Recognition: For the last 12 months, TUS have been pushing for better recognition of all staff efforts over the last 12 months and we met recently with management on this. TUS made a number of proposals that are currently being considered. Management have confirmed that they are developing a business case on options and hope to have a response with TUS very shortly read more
NIHE Holiday Pay Policy (31 Mar) – The policy is being proposed as an outworking of an ongoing court case between the PSNI and its staff. This case has established that regular overtime and allowances are due when employees take statutory leave of 20 days under the Working Time Agreement. The current ruling and case law states that claims for back pay could go back as far as 1998. This is being challenged by the PSNI in an appeal to the Supreme Court and the case is currently listed for June 23rd and 24th 2021 read more
QUB Creche Workers Commence Industrial Action – Sixteen NIPSA members employed in QUB Crèche commence industrial action today in defence of their terms, conditions and employment. It is ironic on International Women’s Day low paid women workers’ have been forced to take industrial action. Despite being engaged in conciliation via the Labour Relations Agency unfortunately that process did not deliver anything that would have allowed the action to be called off. The action today commences with Action Short of Strike Action – but messages of support to these brave NIPSA members will be passed on read more
Baseline Assessment (31 Mar) – “This year of all years is a terrible time to introduce a statutory requirement to introduce a baseline test which is designed not to give information to either teachers or parents. In a letter to MPs today, Schools Minister Nick Gibb announced that secondary legislation laid before Parliament this afternoon would pave the way for the introduction of Baseline Assessment for four-year-olds in September 2021. Commenting, Kevin Courtney, joint general secretary of the National Education Union, said: “In yet another end-of-term announcement, the government is confronting schools with new, unnecessary and harmful policies. The answer to the challenges of educational recovery is not more testing, but this is a lesson that the government is finding it hard to learn…” read more
Support the strikes to Reinstate Sharon Morgan LONDON DESIGN AND ENGINEERING UTC Newham – At the start of this term, teacher and NEU rep Sharon Morgan was summarily dismissed from her job by London Design and Engineering UTC. Sharon was sacked without due process, with no formal investigation or a hearing where she could put her case. At an employment tribunal the judge described LDE’s behaviour as “morally reprehensible” and LDE subsequently agreed to reinstate Sharon. But the next day LDE changed their mind and refused to reinstate her. In reality, Sharon was sacked for helping NEU members stand up for better working conditions for staff, in the interests of the whole school community. This is trade union victimisation and it’s unacceptable. The sacking of Sharon is an attack on all trade unionists at LDE, in Newham, and everywhere.
Support Newham Little Ilford School strikes against unsafe expansion – NEU members have been taking strike action at the enormous comprehensive in Manor Park, east London, which already teaches 1,470 students. Labour-run Newham Council wants it to take 1,800. Sign petition: Newham Council is trying to force Little Ilford School to expand to 1800 pupils. But expanding will mean an overcrowded school and an overwhelming environment for all staff and pupils. It will undermine the quality of education and care that can be provided to pupils. And the expansion is opposed by virtually the entire staff body
Fat cat academy chain heads’ pay must be stopped (2 Apr) – Eye-watering salaries paid to academy trust bosses are “verging on criminality” and must be stopped, the new National President of NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union, warns today read more
Pay offer to teachers fails to recognise their value to Scotland (1 Apr) – The pay offer made to Scotland’s teachers and associated professionals is “completely inadequate” and “fails to recognise the value of teachers to Scotland”, says Scotland’s largest teaching union read more
18 days of strike action at Forth Valley college – Starting from tomorrow (16 Mar), over 200 EIS members at Forth Valley College are set to take strike action in another escalation in the dispute over the removal of 30 lecturers’ jobs. College staff will be striking across three different campuses, including Falkirk, Alloa, and Stirling for 18 days over three months, from Wednesday 17 March. The decision to take industrial action follows a strike ballot that resulted in 77% of members voting yes to the escalation, on a 55% turnout read more
Strike threat at University of Leicester (31 Mar) – University and College Union (UCU) members at the University of Leicester are being balloted from today on whether to take industrial action in defence of jobs. University management have been threatening 145 staff with compulsory redundancy. Although that number is now slightly lower as a result of some taking ‘voluntary’ redundancy or accepting inferior contracts – a large number of livelihoods remain at risk read more
UCU condemns decision by Kingston University to suspend recruitment to its Politics, International Relations and Human Rights undergraduate courses (30 Mar) – The University and College Union (UCU) has today condemned Kingston University’s decision to suspend recruitment its Politics, International Relations and Human Rights undergraduate courses for its 2021 intake. UCU said it is concerned that the suspension could eventually result in the courses closing altogether with inevitable knock-on effects on students and staff, risking jobs in the department and damaging the learning prospects of politically engaged students. This in a time of increased political engagement amongst students and the wider community in terms of Black Lives Matter, the Me Too movement, LGBTQ+ issues and the climate crisis agenda read more
UCU fighting fund: the link is here and donations to the fund are spent on supporting members involved in important disputes. As always, members are asked to contribute whatever their circumstances allow. A donation in solidarity of any amount will be gratefully received by members taking action.
NUJ backs the TUC’s concerns over end of shielding (1 Apr) – Union’s Disabled Members’ Council calls the UK’s government’s decision a sick April Fool’s joke. While the government’s letter says shielders should work from home where possible and continue to limit their exposure to coronavirus, the support for those who cannot work from home has been cut read more
Unions call for meaningful government support for museums, as V&A announce revised restructure plans (1 Apr) – Prospect, the FDA, and PCS, as unions representing staff at the V&A museum, have welcomed the museum’s announcement that they are rethinking their curatorial restructure plans, but have called on the government to provide immediate additional funding read more
Equity agrees code of conduct with TNT Extreme Wrestling (31 Mar) – Equity has agreed a code of conduct with Liverpool-based professional wrestling organisation TNT Extreme Wrestling (TNT). This code follows similar agreements between Equity and UK wrestling promotions including British Wrestling Revolution, Revolution Pro Wrestling and EVE – Riots Grrrls of Wrestling read more
Minimum wage increase not enough says Usdaw, the very least key workers deserve is £10 per hour (1 Apr) – Retail trade union Usdaw is disappointed that low paid workers have not received the full minimum wage increase they were promised. Today’s increase in the so-called National Living Wage (NLW) of 19p to £8.91 an hour doesn’t meet Usdaw’s call for £10 per hour, the real living wage rate of £9.50 or even the Government’s previously projected rate of £9.21 read more
Mandate Trade Union Condemns the Actions of KPMG at Debenhams Blanchardstown Location (1 Apr) – Mandate Trade Union General Secretary, Gerry Light, today condemned the actions of Debenhams liquidators, KPMG, regarding the removal of stock from the Debenhams Blanchardstown location in the early hours of this morning whilst under the cover of darkness read more
Deliveroo riders to strike on Wednesday 7th April and investor briefing exposes further risk as major investment firms shun Deliveroo over exploitation of key workers (28 Mar) – the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) alongside ShareAction and The Private Equity Stakeholder Project have today released a full investor briefing outlining the extensive financial and reputational risks associated with this investment. These are key concerns for the hundreds of UK Deliveroo riders expected to take strike action on 7 April when Deliveroo is due to make its Initial Public Offering (IPO) on the London Stock Exchange. The IWGB has launched a strike fund to support workers taking industrial action read more
Strike protests on Wednesday 7th April (see IWGB Couriers Facebook page for details):-
London – 11am Shoreditch High St Station
Sheffield – 1pm Mappin St
Wolverhampton – 12pm outside the Civic Centre
York – 5pm St Sampsons Square
Reading – 11am Broad St KFC
Townsend Theatre Productions – Online screening of our films about shipbuilding – the story of Appledore and UCS ‘work in’ 1971/2 – On Zoom and Facebook Live Friday 9 April at 7pm. See our website for Live shows starting June. http://ow.ly/LJ6350E9m2K
Fight blacklisting and victimisation of union reps
#SPYCops Inquiry exposes state surveillance of workers movement
QC for blacklisted workers formally calls for Lord Tebbit gives evidence at spycops public inquiry
Imran Khan QC, acting on behalf of the Blacklist Support Group has written to Sir John Mitting, chair of the public inquiry into undercover policing calling for Lord Norman Tebbit to be called to give oral evidence (attached). The formal request comes after Tebbit revealed that when he was Secretary of State for Employment in the Thatcher government, he received regular briefings about trade unions from Special Branch, which included such detail as where individual union members went on holiday. The frank admission came during a parliamentary meeting hosted by Richard Burgon and the Campaign Opposing Police Surveillance (COPS).
Tebbit also told MPs and peers attending the Zoom meeting that he often held private meetings with ‘friends in the unions’ including the General Secretary of the EETPU electricians union to discuss how to deal with leftwing union activists. After the meeting Lord Tebbit told The Times:
“I got briefings from Special Branch on what some of the hard-left, communist-style leaders were up to. But I got far more briefings from my friends who were trade union leaders. Friends of mine who were trade union leaders would come to see me at the Department of Employment by arrangement. They would drive, be admitted straight into the underground car park and take the lift straight to my office, so that nobody would know that they had seen me.”
Dave Smith, secretary of the Blacklist Support Group commented on the letter sent to Sir John Mitting:
“We demand that Tebbit be called to give evidence to the public inquiry about these Special Branch briefings. If any official government or union documentation relating to these meetings at a Ministerial office exist, we demand that they are disclosed to the inquiry. Just as importantly, Tebbit should be forced to name his ‘friends in the unions’ who grassed up union members to a Conservative government Minister. Any union leaders or officials who colluded with a Tory government against other union members should be publicly exposed. Mitting has repeatedly allowed police officers and their managers to avoid giving evidence to this supposedly public inquiry, but any last minute excuses for Tebbit not to give evidence will be totally unacceptable. If Tebbit is healthy enough to sit in the country’s upper legislative chamber, he is fit enough to give evidence at a public inquiry”.
Previous press coverage of Tebbit’s comments:
Builders Crack: The Movie
In the current situation, this long lost film from the 1990s about rank and file union organising in the construction industry is intended to lift the spirits, but also to spark a debate in our movement. Hope the youngsters in this film put a smile on your face.
Watch – Share – Discuss https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VZ-QMA1FMg
Blacklist Support Group
Sign petition: St Mungo’s brutal treatment of BAME worker opposed by Unite – Without income for twenty-one weeks. Female worker comes to the end of a period of sickness during the pandemic. Health conditions put her at raised risk. She is also older and from a BAME background. Her normal job would expose her to further increased risk. Rather than furlough her or find her alternative work the employer simply stops her pay without going through any personnel procedure. Management reject appeals to senior levels from Unite leaving the worker without income and desperate for twenty-one weeks
Sign petition and support the strikes to Reinstate Sharon Morgan LONDON DESIGN AND ENGINEERING UTC – At the start of this term, teacher and NEU rep Sharon Morgan was summarily dismissed from her job by London Design and Engineering UTC. Sharon was sacked without due process, with no formal investigation or a hearing where she could put her case. At an employment tribunal the judge described LDE’s behaviour as “morally reprehensible” and LDE subsequently agreed to reinstate Sharon. But the next day LDE changed their mind and refused to reinstate her. In reality, Sharon was sacked for helping NEU members stand up for better working conditions for staff, in the interests of the whole school community. This is trade union victimisation and it’s unacceptable. The sacking of Sharon is an attack on all trade unionists at LDE, in Newham, and everywhere
Security guard seeks ‘groundbreaking’ injunction to stop his ‘unlawful’ sacking in what his union UVW describes as the first case of its kind for a low paid worker (23 Nov) – A security guard at the Francis Crick Institute in London is set to face off against his employer Wilson James in an injunction hearing in what his trade union, United Voices of the World (UVW), has described as an “unprecedented legal showdown”. On 11th November after only 3 weeks in his new job Cetin Avsar, the security guard from Turkey bringing the legal action, received a letter inviting him to a probationary review hearing stating “[his] conduct has not reached the required standards” citing only his membership of his trade union, his previously having participated in a strike and his views, shard by his union, that outsourcing is ‘discriminatory’. The letter warned him that he might be dismissed after the hearing read more
PCS: Trade unionists asked to send solidarity to PCS rep dismissed after blowing the whistle (25 July) – Trade unionists are being urged to send solidarity messages to a PCS rep dismissed after whistleblowing at the Department of Work and Pensions. Enrico La Rocca, who had worked for the DWP for more than 27 years, lost his job in May after highlighting serious concerns with management over a number of years. His complaints resulted in questions being asked about the department’s handling of Carer’s Allowance overpayments by the National Audit Office (NAO) and raised by in a Work and Pensions Select Committee report read more from Union News
RMT: SUSPENSION OF RMT REPRESENTATIVES, FRATTON – SOUTH WESTERN RAILWAY – Following my previous Circular (IR/171/20) dated 14th May 2020, as you are aware, two of our representatives, Mark Gamble and Brian Perren, were suspended from duty using unscrupulous charges. South Western Railway’s actions throughout this dispute have been appalling. The company have clearly targeted our members as they are hardworking and effective representatives. The callous action of South Western Railway has been abhorrent from the very start of this dispute. Our members recently had their disciplinary hearings and after successful representation Brother Brian Perren has been reinstated to his substantive role. However, Mark has been left in limbo by the company and still faces these ridiculous charges. This means that the ballot that was due to close today (4th June) has been cancelled. As one of our members has been reinstated, this changes the basis of the original ballot. Unfortunately, because of the anti-trade union laws we would not have been able to use any mandate we received from this ballot. Therefore, we have to run a fresh ballot and this will be to continue to defend our suspended Brother Mark Gamble. The National Executive Committee has considered this matter and has congratulated our members and all those who assisted Brian in proving his innocence and ensuring he is reinstated to his substantive role. The NEC has also instructed me to run a fresh ballot in defence of our Brother Mark Gamble who still remains suspended. It is incredibly disappointing that the company has failed to see sense and instead have chosen to drag on an unnecessary dispute. It is disgraceful that Mark remains suspended and we have no choice but to stand shoulder to shoulder and defy SWR’s callous and distasteful decision. I have written to the company today to advise them of this union’s position and they have been left in no doubt that we will not allow them to pursue outrageous charges against our from democratically elected representatives (from RMT general secretary Mick Cash)
Clara Paillard PCS victory – We are delighted to announce that the threat of dismissal has been lifted and Clara, PCS president in the Culture sector, is ‘back at work’ (although from home during the current pandemic).
Reinstate Percy Yunganina UVW union – Percy is a cleaner at King’s college with 5 years on the job, and a UVW executive committee member, who’s just been sacked after a disciplinary hearing he refused to attend due to observing the government’s social distancing guidelines but which King’s College proceeded with anyway in his absence without even letting him know or inviting him to attend via phone. The hearing would have had 8 people cramped together in a small room in complete disregard of the government’s instructions about social distancing. Percy has explained the reaons for not attending and asked for the decision to be overturned and the hearing to be reconvened via phone or in person after Lockdown. However, King’s have scandalously refused this request and have insisted on upholding his dismissal which now leaves Percy out of work and out of pocket in the middle of a pandemic! He will formally appeal but it could take months to hear and deliver an outcome. We will also take King’s to tribunal but that could take over a year. This is utterly shameless conduct by King’s HR team, led by Nigel Smith, the Head of People Services. They need to be held to account. Everyone deserves the right to a fair hearing and should not have that right denied them for respecting the government’s public health guidelines about social distancing. Please repost this and write to Nigel Smith at the following address telling him to reinstate Percy – [email protected]
Sign the petition: Reinstate Ezra Christian RMT – We, the undersigned, are appalled at the treatment and summary dismissal of our Bakerloo Line colleague Ezra Christian. Ezra has been treated very harshly and does not deserve to be sacked. We call on London Underground to do the right thing in this case and Reinstate Ezra back into London Underground Employment immediately
Support Danyal Aziz Unite – Daniel was a Unite rep at London City Airport, who was recently sacked. Labour MP Sam Tarry has tabled a Parliamentary Early Day Motion in support of Danyal. Email your local MP to get them to sign the EDM
Sign the petition: Reinstate UNISON rep Peter Moorhead and stop victimising trade unionists at Alternative Futures Group (AFG)
Support the ASDA workers and reinstate Michael Hunnum – 12,000 workers faced being sacked before Christmas by scrooge bosses ASDA, who are now owned by US superstore giant Walmart. This threat hanging over them was unless they agree to the new ‘Contract 6’ which will see them lose all their paid breaks and forced to work bank holidays. The same employer is sacking North East GMB member Michael Hunnam. Michael’s fight is part of the same struggle to resist the offensive of the ASDA bosses. Michael’s supporters believe that his determined opposition to Contract 6 is what has put him in the ASDA firing line. Support the ASDA workers and reinstate Michael!
Guardian: Ricky Tomlinson’s criminal convictions to be re-examined
Appeal court to look again at case of Royle Family actor after claims he may have been unjustly jailed
The criminal convictions of actor Ricky Tomlinson, who starred in the TV comedy the Royle Family, are to be re-examined by appeal court judges after an official body suggested he may have been unjustly jailed. Tomlinson and other trade unionists have been campaigning for years to clear their names after they were jailed during a strike in the 1970s. On Tuesday, the Criminal Cases Review Commission, the public body that scrutinises alleged miscarriages of justice, announced it had asked the court of appeal to review the cases of Tomlinson and others. Tomlinson, 80, said it was “good news” and an opportunity to prove that he and 23 other men were prosecuted in what amounted to a politically motivated attack on the trade union movement by the government, police and managers read more in Guardian
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
NUJ: Journalists leaders stand up for Belarus media read more
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