2022 NSSN Conference
Saturday 2nd July 11am-4.30pm Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL Facebook event
Confirmed speakers include: Sharon Graham Unite General Secretary, Steve Gillan POA General Secretary, Sarah Woolley BFAWU General Secretary, Terry Pullinger CWU Deputy General Secretary Postal, Eddie Dempsey RMT Senior Assistant General Secretary, Daniel Kebede NEU President, Annoesjka Valent NAPO National Official, Pete Randle Unite Coventry bin striker, Helen O’Connor GMB Regional Organiser & GMB St Georges Hospital strikers and Rob Williams NSSN Chair
NSSN Chair Rob Williams: “The last week or so has been a game-changer as far as the trade union movement is concerned. Up to 100,000 of us marched through the streets of London on 18 June on the Trade Union Congress (TUC) demo. And last week, 50,000 RMT members shut down the national rail network and London Underground, where they were joined by 1,000 Unite members.
It was a vivid demonstration of the power of workers and, as we have seen during Covid, confirmation that we are the key force in society. From being constantly told that unions are too weak, the right-wing media are rabidly demanding that anti-union laws are beefed up further, and the Tories are threatening to introduce measures against strike action.
I was proud to stand with the NSSN banner on the RMT picket lines and the solidarity protest outside Kings Cross last Saturday, with thousands of other workers. This included outsourced, low-paid striking GMB members from St George’s hospital in Tooting, demanding to be brought back into the NHS. The CWU General Secretary Dave Ward brought solidarity greetings as his union ballots for national action in British Telecom and Royal Mail, while its members are striking in the Post Office.
This is part of a strike wave that has developed and grown out of the pandemic – firstly against bosses’ attacks such as fire and rehire, and now for an inflation-proof pay rise to keep workers’ heads above water during this cost of living crisis. It’s why there is particular support for the rail strike: we the working class, really are all in this together.
When workers look at this crisis-ridden Tory government, they know that they can be defeated. But the most sure way to do that is to bring together workers across the private and public sectors in a joint fight on pay and jobs. It is absolutely essential that, as well as supporting each other’s disputes, all the unions urgently meet together to coordinate industrial action ballots to build the widest possible action.
The NSSN was initiated by the RMT under its late great general secretary Bob Crow in 2006. We continue to build solidarity and support for unions and their members taking action. This will be the 15th national NSSN conference.
This year, we have leaders from some of the key unions on our platform. More than ever before, this year’s NSSN conference is a vital forum for union members and reps to come together to talk about their struggles, and discuss out the strategy, tactics and programme needed for the fight of our lives. Strike together!”
Attendance fee £6. Register on the day or email [email protected]
Also, email us if you would like to put yourself forward for the NSSN steering committee and/or book a stall for the conference
You can download the conference leaflet plus a letter for union branches, trades councils
We take very seriously the risk of Covid-19. We have masks and hand sanitisers available but bring your own if you can, and we advise that if possible you take a lateral flow test before travelling.
The NSSN will be again holding our rally at TUC Congress in Brighton in the Holiday Inn hotel on Sunday 11th September 1pm-3pm
Support the RMT as railworkers show their power
The NSSN stands in solidarity with the RMT and the 50,000 of its members who took strike action last week nationally and on London Underground, where they were joined by 1,000 Unite members.
Donate to the RMT National Dispute Fund
Tory contracts boosted rail fat cats’ profits (27 June) – Bailing out the TOCs. Train operating companies are only back in profit thanks to transport secretary Grant Shapps’s pandemic bailouts and new rail contracts, according to a new RMT report published today read more
RMT on Grant Shapps claims (25 June) – RMT responds to claims made about working practices on the railway by Grant Shapps. Responding to claims made about working practices on the railway by Grant Shapps, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “Grant Shapps is talking nonsense and is completely ignorant of how the railways work which is a major shortcoming for a Transport Secretary. “It is false that that Sunday working practices have not been updated since 1919…” read more
RMT on Opinium Poll (25 June) – Poll shows nearly 3 quarters of public want rail workers to have cost of living wage rise. Independent polling released by the RMT today found strong support for rail workers to receive a fairer deal and for the government to intervene to address the rail workers concerns. A clear majority of the public also support the rail workers’ right to strike when negotiations fail read more
London Underground workers renew strike mandate (24 June) – London Underground workers renew strike mandate for further action on the tube. RMT members have delivered a decisive ballot result in their campaign to protect pensions, working agreements and prevent job losses on the London Underground. 91.1% voted yes in the ballot on a 53.1% turnout, meaning tube workers have the right to continue to withdraw their labour in the coming weeks and months. TfL have plans to cut 600 jobs and want to rob RMT members of their pension entitlements. RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “This is a fantastic result for our members and proves that the arguments RMT has been making is endorsed by tube workers read more
RMT declares dispute over outsourced Underground cleaners (23 June) – RMT declares dispute over outsourced Underground cleaners following ‘stitch up’ review. RMT has warned London mayor Sadiq Khan that it would be declaring another dispute on the Underground and balloting for strike action after it emerged that heroic Tube cleaners have been condemned to three more years of outsourcing following what the union described as “a stitch up behind closed doors” read more
Second strike day sees huge turnout on pickets (23 June) – RMT members have once again taken to picket lines, in a show of industrial strength on the second day of national rail strike action. Over 40,000 members are on strike over a multiyear pay freeze and a lack of job security, with Network Rail and the train operating companies threatening thousands of compulsory redundancies read more
RMT strike action to go ahead on Thursday (22 June) – RMT strike action to go ahead on Thursday after talks breakdown without agreement. Commenting on today’s talks, Mick Lynch RMT general secretary said: “Grant Shapps has wrecked these negotiations by not allowing Network Rail to withdraw their letter threatening redundancy for 2,900 of our members read more
RMT General Secretary on rail dispute (21 June) – Commenting on today’s first rail strike since 1989, RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said: “Today’s turnout at picket lines has been fantastic and exceeded expectations in our struggle for job security, defending conditions and a decent pay rise. “Our members will continue the campaign and have shown outstanding unity in pursuit of a settlement to this dispute. “RMT members are leading the way for all workers in this country who are sick and tired of having their pay and conditions slashed by a mixture of big business profits and government policy. “Now is the time to stand up and fight for every single railway worker in this dispute that we will win”
Support sacked P&O workers
NSSN supporters have taken part in demonstrations to support the 800 sacked P&O workers and their unions the RMT and Nautilus International and other seafarer unions. We will advertise solidarity protests in this bulletin and we will update it during the week, and on social media when they are announced. We support the calls for P&O to be nationalised to save jobs and defend communities.
Stop union victimisation: support the Coventry bin strike
The Labour council has disgracefully targeted Pete Randle, one of the senior Unite shop stewards. We call on all our supporters to support Pete and his striking members
Sign petition to Councillor George Duggins – Coventry Council: Reinstate Pete Randle, stop union busting, stop strike breaking and pay the rate
100 per cent strike vote by HGV drivers sends determined message to Coventry Council (7 June) – In a resounding show of unity and determination, striking HGV drivers in Coventry have voted to renew their strike mandate and continue industrial action into the summer. Putting pressure on Coventry council to settle with the union, 100 per cent of those workers who voted support continuing strike action until an agreement is reached. The HGV drivers have been on all out-strike since 31 January in a dispute over low pay and the council’s refusal to pay the HGV refuse lorry drivers the market rate for the job read more
Follow @UniteWestMids on twitter. Coventry bin worker’s strike fund – Unity Trust Bank; Name of Account: Unite WM/7116 Branch Coventry Local Government; Account number: 20302665 Sort code: 60-83-01; send messages of solidarity to [email protected]
Solidarity with GMB after Wealden bin strike victory but protest against picket line arrests
Wealden bin strike ends in seventh week with massive pay deal for workers (14 June) – GMB union members have today accepted an improved pay offer to end the refuse strike within Wealden District Council. Their employer Biffa’s latest pay offer will constitute a pay rise of more than 27 per cent for some workers. The total value of the settlement is worth between 24 and 27 per cent, depending on which job they do. Kerbside collections within Wealden will recommence from tomorrow [Wednesday 15 June]. The strike ends after 6 weeks and 2 days of action which garnered many messages of support and solidarity from local residents read more
Solidarity with GMB as arrests made on Wealden bin strike picket – The NSSN like many others in the trade union movement sent solidarity to the GMB after officers and a member were arrested recently. They remained in police custody for hours but were released later that day. This was an outrageous act. The NSSN will continue to support the GMB and its members in Wealden. Donate to GMB Southern region fighting fund. There is a protest to support the three officials who got arrested last week on the Wealden Biffa picket line. Three of them have been charged with obstructing a public highway and ordered to appear at Hastings Magistrates Court 29th June at 9.30am
GMB responding to reports of arrests on Wealden refuse strike picket line this morning (27 May)
Stop the war in Ukraine
The NSSN calls for the unity of working-class people across Ukraine, Russia and the whole region against war, militarisation and repression. We support the actions of independent trade unions in Ukraine and Russia in defending workers.
FBU Executive Council Statement – Invasion and War in Ukraine
Unite executive council – statement on Ukraine crisis
NIPSA statement: Russian Invasion of Ukraine
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]
Day of the Seafarer (25 June) – SEAFARER Union RMT today issued a call for reform to the United National Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) on the International Maritime Organisation’s Day of the Seafarer, theme of which is ‘Your voyage.’ Read more
Churchill cleaners began 5 days of strike action (2 June) – Cleaners continue their fight for a £15 per hour. Staff in cleaning roles on GTR, Network Rail, HS1 and South East Trains will be on picket lines throughout the weekend. The union is demanding Churchill pay company sick pay and free travel for cleaning staff across the network, to bring them in line with every other railway worker on the network. Due to the cost-of-living crisis with prices rising at their fastest rate in 30 years and inflation running at 11.1 percent, these workers need a pay rise now. Churchill made £39m profit in 2020 but is flat out refusing to raise cleaners’ wages to a liveable standard. Reports from picket lines suggested no trains were being cleaned and RMT members were in good spirits in their fight for pay justice read more
48 hour TransPennine Express strike action goes ahead (1 June) – TPE conductors on major railway lines will take 48 hours of strike action from Saturday in row over pay and Sunday working. The company continues to refuse TPE conductors’ request to increase pay for staff coming in on their days off and Sundays. However, this week it emerged, that TPE bosses have offered drivers an increase of 15% for working on their days off. RMT has made it clear if the same offer was made to conductors, then this latest strike action would be suspended read more
Atalian Servest cleaners strike (30 May) – Further to our previous correspondence, despite your union’s best efforts to try to resolve this matter, Atalian Servest has continued to fail to negotiate a pay offer which is adequate. At the conclusion of the latest talks, the company advised your union that intend to impose their latest derisory pay offer. Therefore, the strike action this weekend which I previously notified you about remains on. For ease of reference members are instructed not to book on for any shifts that commence between: 00:01 hours on Saturday 4th June 2022 and 23:59 on Sunday 5th June 2022 read more
Support the London Night Tube strike: every Friday and Saturday nights on Central and Victoria lines read more
Britain’s train drivers’ union announces strike action on Greater Anglia, Hull Trains and tram drivers in south London – ASLEF, the train drivers’ trade union, have announced strike action over pay:-
[i] Drivers at Greater Anglia will strike between 00:01 and 23:59 Thursday 23 June 2022.
[ii] Drivers at Hull Trains will strike between 00:01 and 23:59 on Sunday 26 June.
[iii] And tram drivers in south London will strike for a fair pay deal from 00:01 on Tuesday 28 June until 23:59 on Wednesday 29 June and from 00:01 on Wednesday 13 July until 23:59 on Thursday 14 July read more
Vote ‘Yes’ – we will not stand for years of pay cuts (1 June) – We continually visit branches, testing what we are doing, to avoid accusations of an ivory tower mentality or of being London-centric. Naturally, in a fractionalised industry, with the continual carving up of the franchise map, ‘one size fits all’ policies are difficult to deliver but aspiration cannot – and should not – be tempered but encouraged read more
TSSA slams ‘negligent and disgraceful’ Shapps over TfL funding (25 June) – London Underground tube train at a platform with a red footbridge above. TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has described the latest short-term Transport for London (TfL) funding from the government “as highly negligent and disgraceful”. Cortes called on Transport Secretary, Grant Shapps, to “get a grip” after TfL’s funding deal was extended only until the 13 July, after running out on 24 June read more
Strike ballots at rail operator – Greater Anglia (24 June) – Rail union TSSA has served notice to ballot members at Greater Anglia for strike action and action short of strike in a dispute over pay, conditions and job security. The union is demanding a guarantee of no compulsory redundancies for 2022, no unagreed changes to terms and conditions, and a pay increase which reflects the rising cost of living read more
Strike ballots at rail operator – Trans Pennine Express (TPE) (23 June)
Strike ballots at rail operator – Great Western Railway (GWR) (17 June)
Strike ballots at rail operator – Southeastern (17 June)
Strike ballots in rail operators C2C, LNER and Northern (15 June)
TSSA ballots Network Rail members for strike action (14 June)
Strike action ballots for Cross Country, East Midlands Railway and West Midlands Trains (10 June)
TSSA ballots Avanti West Coast members for strike action (9 June)
TSSA accepts 7.1 per cent pay deal at Merseyrail (22 June) – TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes has welcomed news that members across Merseyrail have voted to accept a 7.1 per cent pay deal describing it as “a sensible outcome to a reasonable offer”. TSSA members in general grades at Merseyrail voted overwhelmingly (by 94 per cent) to accept the deal, with members in management grades being offered the same terms. The offer for general grades will be backdated to the first Sunday in April 2022 and if accepted the management grades pay will be applicable from 1 July read more
Call to investigate safety violations on strike day (22 June) – TSSA is demanding an investigation into rail safety after reports of multiple trains being sent in the wrong direction and some attempting to leave stations when signals were on red during yesterday’s strike read more
Stagecoach Merseyside bus strike suspended following revised pay offer (27 June) – A strike of bus workers employed by Stagecoach on Merseyside scheduled for this Thursday (30 June) has been suspended after workers received a revised pay offer. The dispute involves 370 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, employed as bus drivers and engineers at the company’s Gilmoss depot. Unite is now in the process balloting its members on the offer. Unite regional officer Dave Roberts said: “Following lengthy negotiations Stagecoach came forward with a revised offer, which Unite’s members are now being balloted on.” If the offer is rejected by members the second strike scheduled for Monday 4 July will go ahead as planned read more
Sharon Graham to David Lammy on British Airways: Supporting bad bosses is a new low for Labour (26 June) – The leader of Unite the union has hit back at the comments by David Lammy MP, Labour shadow foreign secretary, made today (Sunday) that he would not support Unite’s members at British Airways who are fighting to restore the 10 per cent cut from their pay by the airline during the pandemic. Responding, Sharon Graham, Unite general secretary said: “David Lammy has chosen to launch a direct attack on British Airways workers. This is a group of workers who were savagely attacked by their employer during Covid. ‘Fire and rehire’ led to thousands of unnecessary job cuts and pay being slashed. “This dispute is not about a pay rise – it’s about restoring money taken out of workers’ pockets by an opportunistic employer. British Airways and its parent company IAG hold billions in reserves and assets and are predicting a return to profit this quarter. “Supporting bad bosses is a new low for Labour and once again shows that politicians have failed. It is now down to the trade unions to defend working people. We are their only voice.” Read more
Unite deal raises pay by nearly £3,200 for North Air Glasgow airport tanker drivers (24 June) – Unite has secured a pay deal for around 20 tanker drivers employed by North Air who supply fuel to Glasgow Airport, the UK’s leading aviation trade union confirmed. The deal, unanimously agreed by Unite members, will raise basic pay by 9 per cent, and it also includes a 9 per cent increase in shift allowances, bringing the North Air drivers total annual income up by around £3,159. North Air provides refuelling services for domestic and international airlines who fly into and out of Glasgow Airport read more
Unite secures pay rise worth 15.8 per cent for Stagecoach Worthing bus drivers (23 June) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, has secured a pay rise worth 15.8 per cent for Stagecoach Worthing drivers. The drivers will benefit from the one year pay deal, which sees a backdated five per cent rise to March this year, a five per cent increase on the March rate in June and a five per cent increase on the June rate in August. In total, these workers will see their wages rise by 15.8 per cent. The deal was secured following negotiations between the company and Unite reps and officials and reached without the need to progress to industrial action read more
British Airways facing summer turmoil as check in staff vote overwhelmingly for strikes over pay (23 June) – Workers employed as check in staff by British Airways (BA) at Heathrow airport have voted overwhelmingly for strike action in a dispute over pay. Over 500 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union employed in BA’s ‘A scales division’ recorded a 94.7 per cent vote in favour of strike action. The dispute is a result of BA restoring the 10 per cent pay cut made during the pandemic to management but refusing to reinstate wage rates for A scales check-in staff. Unite is now giving BA a short window of opportunity to remove the 10 per cent pay cut before announcing strikes which will cause severe disruption to flights this summer read more
Workers at Thirteen Housing Group suspend strike action as they vote on improved offer (23 June) – Workers at major housing association Thirteen Housing Group, which has over 35,000 properties in the North East and Yorkshire, have suspended the first week of a notified four week schedule of industrial action, so they can vote on an improved pay offer, Unite the union said today (Thursday 23 June). The details of the offer remain confidential while hundreds of Unite members, who are responsible for property maintenance and admin, are balloted. The result is due on Thursday 30 June. As a result, the first bout of industrial action, which was due to run from Saturday (25 June) to Tuesday (28 June), has been suspended read more
Basildon CNH tractor factory shutdown during pay strikes (22 June) – CEO pocketed over £17m but workers told to take a pay cut. Production at Basildon’s biggest employer, the CNH Industrial tractor factory, will come to a standstill as workers take action for better pay, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Wednesday 22 June). More than 500 workers, comprising nearly the entire shopfloor of the factory, will strike on 30 June, 8, 11, 28 and 29 July and 26 and 30 August. More strikes are set to be scheduled if the dispute is not resolved. The workers are striking over a below inflation two year pay offer of 5.6 per cent for the first year and between 1.8 and three per cent for the second depending on CPI inflation. Unite says the offer is a real terms pay cut when the real rate of inflation, RPI, is at 11.7 per cent and expected to climb. The workers at the 60-year-old factory want a pay rise that reflects rising living costs, which they say CNH can well afford read more
Merseyside braced for bus disruption as Stagecoach workers announce strikes (22 June) – Bus passengers across Merseyside are set for severe disruption and delays beginning next week as a result of bus operator Stagecoach failing to make workers a fair pay offer. The dispute affects 370 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, who are employed as bus drivers and engineers and work at the company’s Gilmoss depot. The drivers are looking for a fair deal that would raise the current pay rate of just £12.69 an hour. Initial strikes have been called for Thursday 30 June and also for Monday 4 July read more
Caterpillar pays for strike-breakers to stay in five star luxury (22 June) – Unite blasts firm for ‘burning through’ cash on rooms that cost up to £850 a night rather than pay workers fairly. Manufacturing company Caterpillar has been paying for the strike-breakers it brought to Northern Ireland to stay in five star luxury, Unite the union says today (Wednesday). The strike breakers have been staying at the Grand Central Hotel in Belfast but after their presence attracted protests, they were moved to the five-start Culloden Resort Hotel and Spa. Rooms at the Culloden Resort Hotel – which offers a `luxurious break…..at the most prestigious five-star hotel in Northern Ireland’ – can cost up to £850 a night, while a suite is £2,500 a night. Unite says that, along with the high-cost hotel accommodation costs, Caterpillar is paying the travel costs and hourly premiums to those they have brought in to cross picket lines read more
All-out strike at Interface Europe in Craigavon over pay cut proposal (21 June) – Business turned a £3.7 million profit in 2020 with director earning 40 times workers’ basic pay. Workers at the Craigavon-based flooring manufacturer Interface Europe are set to commence continuous (all-out) strike action in a dispute over pay. The strike follows a ballot of Unite’s more than one hundred members which delivered a majority of 88 percent for strike action on a 93 percent turnout. Continuous strike action due to commence at 22:30 hours on Sunday 26 June with pickets on site from 06:45 hours on Monday 27 June. With Unite’s membership representing almost all the full-time contracted production workers onsite, the strike is set to have a substantial impact on the company’s operations. The industrial dispute arises after management rejected the workers’ pay claim for 11 percent (the current rate of retail price inflation) and instead offered a pay increase of 5.25 percent with an additional two percent to shift premiums for hourly employees working shifts. This offer was overwhelmingly rejected by workers as a substantial real-terms pay cut. In response, management have unilaterally imposed their pay offer on agency workers – ignoring entirely the wider collective bargaining process read more
McLaren, Aston Martin and Bentley supply chain hit by strikes over pay ‘cut’ (15 June) – Tipton CabAuto workers earn £9.90ph building interiors for £200k + cars. West Midland workers making interiors for elite autos McLaren, Aston Martin and Bentley, are due to start a period of seven one-day strikes in June and July over a real terms pay cut. More than 100 workers at CabAuto in Tipton earn just £9.90 an hour to make seats and interior trims for luxury cars such as the £700,000 McLaren Senna and the £225,000 Aston Martin Superleggera. The workers will strike over a three per cent pay offer on 28 and 30 June and 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8 July. Unite says that the three percent offered to its CabAuto members is a pay cut with real inflation running at 11.1 per cent and rising. Some CabAuto workers are so poorly rewarded that they have been forced to use food banks read more
Strike at Moy Park Randalstown mill continues as employers refuse to pay the rate for the job (15 June) – Randalstown workers paid ‘chicken feed’ wages – some less than £5,000 a year compared to workers at other Moy Park sites. As Moy Park profits touch £90 million Unite exposes how poverty pay at Randalstown leaves workers borrowing to ‘make ends meet’. A Unite survey of striking Moy Park workers has revealed that eight in 10 are suffering a declining standard of living; seven in 10 had trouble making ends meet in the last year; and six in 10 had to borrow money to get by. Drivers at the plant regularly work well in excess of 70 hours a week to make a living as the rates of pay at the site are more than £5,000 a year less than drivers receive at other Moy Park sites for the same work. The latest figures for 2021 show Moy Park has reported profits of £86 million, while its owner Pilgrim’s Pride banked among its highest ever margins at £478 million. So there’s cash a plenty to pay the same rate across the company. Unite reveals the shocking statistics as workers at Randalstown stand on pickets for a second week at the Moy Park owned chicken feed mill read more
Big name brands Diageo, Chivas, Bacardi, Carlsberg among those facing bottle shortages this summer as workers at Owens Illinois (O-I) Glass take strike action in pay dispute – Over 160 workers, members of Unite the union, are set to walk out in rejection of a pay offer of just four per cent, which the union says is a pay cut given the real inflation rate (RPI) currently stands 11.1 per cent. O-I Glass’s quarterly results released in March this year shows significant growth in both revenue and net income. Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “O-I Glass is another shameful example of a business that can afford to pay a decent wage but won’t pay. The offer on the table is a pay cut, not a rise, and is entirely unacceptable. O-I Glass needs to return with an acceptable offer or face strike action by our members, who will have the full support of their union in this fight for fair pay.” Strike action will be across three sites: the Devilla Forest Quarry and the Glasshouse Loan which are both in Alloa, Scotland, and the company’s plant in Edinburgh Way, Harlow. Strikes will begin with a 24 hour strike at the Devilla Forest Quarry, on Wednesday 15 June, this will be followed by a 48 hour strike at the Glasshouse in Alloa, beginning on Thursday 16 June. The workers at the Harlow plant will then stage a 48 hour walkout beginning on Sunday 19 June. Further strike action is set to be announced in the near future. Hopes of progress in the dispute collapsed this week when the company simply restated their previous pay offer during negotiations read more
Staff at FCA prepare for second wave of strike action as FoI requests exposes a “deep crisis” – Freedom of Information (FoI) requests lodged by Unite has revealed that 1,000 employees have left the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) since CEO, Nikhil Rathi took office in October 2020, prompting the union to warn of a deep crisis at the regulator. The news comes as Unite members prepare to stage a second wave of strike action in London and Edinburgh for two days beginning on Thursday (9 June).Unite says the FCA is in crisis and is haemorrhaging staff. It can no longer claim to be an effective or reliable regulator read more
Strikes over poverty pay at Red Funnel set to shut down Southampton to Cowes ferries – Strike action could shut down all Southampton to Cowes ferry services, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Wednesday). In a dispute over poverty pay, around 120 customer service staff, shunters and ratings, who work on Red Funnel’s Southampton to Cowes passenger ferry and car ferry, will be balloted for strike action between 14 June and 5 July. The workers have rejected a pay offer of 4.5 per cent, rising to 6.5 per cent for the lowest paid staff. They are calling for an increase that reflects the real, fast-rising cost of living which Unite says runs at 11.1 per cent. The majority of the employees at Red Funnel, which operates the lucrative routes, are on the national minimum wage. Unite says the workers are increasingly struggling to pay increased rents. Some are turning to food banks and ‘making the most’ of food allowances at work to keep bills down read more
Doncaster rail maintenance workers to strike over ‘abhorrent’ fire and rehire by US multi-national – Unions declare ‘shame on you’ to Wabtec’s breaking of proud history. Members of Unite and the RMT unions employed by rail maintenance firm Wabtec in Doncaster will strike over ‘abhorrent’ fire and rehire plans. Over 200 workers will take strike action on 10, 11, 12 and 13 June. A second round of strike action will begin on 27 June and end on 3 July, with more strikes set to be announced. The unions say that the US-owned firm is bringing shame to Doncaster, home of the Flying Scotsman, which was built on the site Wabtec operates from. Wabtec is seeking to fire and rehire the workers onto new contracts that will see breaks cut and staff having to work extra hours, including at the end of their shift, for no extra pay. The company is offering workers that sign the contracts a two-year below inflation pay rise. With inflation (RPI) running at 11.1 percent, this is a real terms pay cut over two years. The unions are advising staff who have been pressurised by management during one-to-one meetings into signing the new contracts that they can still take action to fight the changes read more
Main port on Shetland Isles could be forced to close after negotiations with Port Authority break down – Unite warns strikes could bring Lerwick harbour to a standstill. Unite the union confirmed today (8 June) that its members working at the Lerwick Port Authority are set to start all-out strike action in a dispute over pay, terms and conditions. Around a dozen key workers will begin continuous strike action from 00:01 hours on Monday 20 June at the main port in the Shetland Islands. The all-out strike marks an escalation from the current overtime bans, and will bring operations at the port to a ‘standstill’ impacting cruise liners and oil and gas vessels, as well as the general shipping read more
Pay strikes at UK’s only ink manufacturer to hit Daily Mail, Amcor, Scheizwer and Multi-Colour Corp – Pay strikes at the UK’s only ink manufacturer, Sun Chemical, will impact the printing of the Daily Mail as well as production for Amcor, Scheizwer and Multi-Colour Corp. Nearly 200 Sun Chemical employees, members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, will take strike action at sites across the country over an ‘insulting’ three per cent pay offer. An overtime ban will commence on 6 June followed by a 24-hour strike on 9 June at seven sites, with more strikes set to be announced. The sites are in Bristol, Midsomer Norton in Somerset, Workington in Cumbria, Alfreton in Derbyshire and Heywood, Milnrow and Urmston in Greater Manchester. Sun Chemicals is part of the global DIC corporation. According to the DIC 2021 report, the corporation made £2.5 billion in profits, with its Europe and Africa division, of which Sun Chemicals is the largest company, netting profits of £60 million read more
Yorkshire bus passengers face severe disruption as Arriva workers announce extensive strike action over `pitiful’ pay – Bus passengers in Yorkshire are braced for substantial strike action in June as workers challenge Arriva’s failure to tackle low pay. Over 650 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, have recorded 96 per cent vote in favour of strike action following the company’s pitiful offer of a 4.1 per cent pay increase, far below the real inflation rate (RPI) which currently stands at 11.1 per cent. Indefinite (all out) strike action will begin on Monday 6 June involving bus drivers and engineers based at depots in Castleford, Dewsbury, Heckmondwike, Selby and Wakefield read more
Carlisle can factory strikes to hit summer supplies of Coca Cola, Heineken, Brewdog and Magners – June pay strikes at Carlisle’s Crown Bevcan factory will hit summer supplies of cans of Coca Cola, Heineken, Brewdog, Magners and Bulmers, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Tuesday 24 May). Around 200 workers, who have already taken two days of strike action over a three per cent pay offer, will strike on 4, 5, 8, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17 June. The tin can production workers are seeking a pay deal that reflects rising living costs read more
Unite says Marine Scotland strikes on after impasse in talks with Scottish Government – Unite the union has confirmed today (Tuesday 24 May) that strike action at Marine Scotland will go ahead following a failure by the Scottish government to make an improved pay offer. The trade union has been engaged in several rounds of discussions with the Scottish government following a two per cent pay imposition for 2021, which Unite contests could constitute an ‘unlawful inducement’. However, with the Scottish Government refusing to re-open pay talks for 2021, strikes are to go ahead. Unite members at Marine Scotland in seafaring roles will now take part in two separate periods of 48-hour strike action involving Marine Protection Vessels (MPV) Hirta on 26 and 27 May, and Jura on 3 and 4 June. The vessels are normally based at Aberdeen harbour read more
Hinkley Point facing delivery delays as engineering workers strike in pay dispute – The flagship Hinkley Point nuclear power plant development could face significant delays due to a pay dispute at Darchem Engineering in Stockton-on-Tees. Strike action will hit Darchem Engineering, which manufactures industrial pond liners for Hinkley Point as part of £200 million contract with the next delivery due in June. The workers are challenging an increasing pay disparity between trades at the company. The welders’ pay has increased by over £2 an hour but the company has refused to give a similar increase to the platers and sheet metal workers. Industrial action by Unite’s members will begin with an overtime ban starting on Monday 6 June. This will then be followed by three 48-hour strikes beginning on Monday 13 June, Monday 20 June and Monday 27 June. Further strikes could be called depending on the response of the employer read more
Langford Lodge strikes to go ahead as Unite pursues pay rise and action on equal pay scandal – Unite has notified management at Crumlin-based Langford Lodge that their workers will commence a first week of strike action in pursuit of a pay increase from 00.01am on Thursday 26 May. The union also wants the scandal of unequal pay addressed at the company. A significant grouping of women machinists for example are being paid £1.93 per hour less than male colleagues while they do work of similar or equal value. The strike is an escalation of an overtime ban previously in force at the RLC Engineering-owned, precision engineering aerospace manufacturer. Last minute talks failed to result in agreement on the pay and equality improvements sought by Unite, leaving the union’s members with no alternative but to follow through on plans for a first week of strike action read more
Hackney council strikes escalate as parking services workers join pay dispute – Strikes at Hackney council will escalate in the coming weeks, Unite, the UK’s leading union, has warned, with 70 parking services workers now joining more than 200 of their colleagues in a dispute over pay. Staff working in refuse, building services and disability transport services took six days of strike action in late April and early May over an ‘insulting’ 1.75 per cent pay offer. With the real rate of inflation (RPI) now running at 11.1 per cent, strike action is set to step up in the coming weeks. In addition, Hackney parking services staff are to be balloted for industrial action over pay and conditions after their department was insourced back to the council on 1 April this year – potentially bringing the total number of striking workers to 270. Parking services staff have been told that negotiations over their pay, terms and conditions will not even be considered until next year. The workers are on inferior wages and contracts compared to other Hackney council workers read more
C2C rail passengers warned of disruption as Alstom workers begin strike over pay attacks – Passengers using the C2C rails line between London and Southend are set for considerable disruption over the coming weeks as maintenance engineers employed by Alstom take strike action in a dispute over pay and conditions. Strikes are due to begin tomorrow (Monday 9 May) with further action scheduled for 13, 16, 20, 23, 27, 30 May and 3 June. Disruption to services is likely on both the strike days and on days following the strike action. An overtime ban is also in force. The workers are taking action following a series of attacks on their pay and condition and concerns about high sickness and low morale at Alstom, the French company that bought Bombardier in 2020. The workers recorded a 95 per cent yes vote in favour of strike action read more
Rugby GE Steam strikes could worsen as company uses outside consultants to ‘undermine’ union – The first strikes in 45 years at Rugby’s 120-year-old GE Steam turbine factory could worsen as the company uses outside consultancy firm Shape Associates to ‘undermine’ union organisation. Unite, the UK’s leading union, is preparing to re-ballot more than 75 of its members at the factory to extend strike action over attacks on pay. The initial round of strike action began on 17 April and is due to end on 2 May, with the next strike on 29 April. The union said GE Steam has given over the responsibility of running the factory to Shape Associates so the consultancy firm can force through cutbacks prior to the site’s sale to EDF read more
Unite urges Woolwich Ferry – seize opportunity to resolve dispute as strike ballot suspended to kick-start talks – Woolwich Ferry’s workers have suspended their industrial action and also plans to hold another strike ballot in a goodwill gesture to resolve the long-running dispute, Unite the union said today (Tuesday 5 April). Unite has put forward proposals, which remain confidential, to Transport for London (TfL) bosses to kick-start meaningful talks over the poor employment relations that have been the hallmark of successive operators of the troubled ferry. Six workers, including two Unite reps, still remain unfairly suspended when the last bout of industrial action ended on 28 March read more
Strike action continues as GE Aviation accused of ‘dirty tricks’ in Gloucester pay dispute – Workers at Gloucester’s Hurricane Road GE Aviation factory will be striking every Friday until their call for a fair wage is honoured, Unite the union has said today (Tuesday 29 March). Multinational GE Aviation has been accused of `dirty tricks’ in an attempt to undermine the workers. The 90-plus workers are employed by GE’s subsidiary Dowty Propellers. The workers have rejected a two year pay offer worth just 4.5 per cent which, with the actual level of inflation (retail price index) standing at 8.2 per cent, amounts to a real terms pay cut read more
Veolia workers across Edinburgh and Lothians set to strike over `insulting’ pay offer – Unite can confirm today (24 March) that more than 50 members working for Veolia Water across Edinburgh and the Lothians are set to take strike action in a dispute over pay. The strike action, involving plant operatives, electrical maintenance, mechanical, and administrative staff, was supported overwhelmingly by 94 per cent of Unite’s members in a ballot turnout of 83 per cent. The Veolia workers are demanding a significantly improved pay offer from the company. With the more realistic cost of living (RPI) currently running at 8.2 per cent per cent, Veolia’s offer of 2.6 per cent for this year is a pay cut. Strike action will take place from 7-13 April, and then continuous strike action from 21 April read more
PCS wins check-off case against Defra (24 June) – PCS has won a fourth case against a government department over the withdrawal of check-off facilities. Until 30 January 2015, PCS members in the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, were able to pay their union subscriptions by means of ‘check-off’ arrangements where deductions were made directly from their salaries through the payroll system by the department and paid to PCS. The department then removed members’ ability to pay their subs through their wage slips and were forced to move to paying through direct debit read more
Parliament hears why DWP office closures should not go ahead (24 June) – The devastating impact on services, communities and staff resulting from the DWP mass office closures was highlighted by PCS Parliamentary Group Chair, Chris Stephens. Having helped keep the UK running during the pandemic, DWP has rewarded PCS members by announcing large-scale office closures – 43 are earmarked for closure – which will almost certainly mean job losses read more
HMCTS forces industrial action ballot by restarting Common Platform rollout (23 June) – In clear breach of the dispute process HMCTS informed PCS at 9.37pm yesterday that they would be announcing to staff at 09.30am today that they will proceed with the Common Platform roll-out. The HMCTS Crime Programme Board and senior judiciary gave their approval for Common Platform to be implemented at more criminal courts across England and Wales. 35 additional court sites across England and Wales will be inflicted with Common Platform over the next two months read more
PCS responds to government plans to block ECHR (22 June) – As government ministers plan new legislation to overturn the European Court of Human Rights’ block on sending asylum seekers to Rwanda, PCS says they should be concentrating on tackling the cost-of-living crisis read more
Strong support for British Council strike (16 June) – British Council workers on UK contracts took their first of three days of strike action yesterday. British Council members are on strike for three days over cuts, redundancies and privatisation. Picket lines took place in London and Manchester, with union members across the globe participating in the strike on social media. Members from London and Manchester travelled to Westminster to lobby members of parliament to build support for the campaign read more
Ask your MP to support our claim for fair pay for OCS staff (14 June) – Ahead of the launch of our strike ballot for PCS members employed by OCS on the HMCTS security contract we have tabled an Early Day Motion asking for a pay rise and improved terms and conditions. PCS members employed by OCS on the HMCTS security contract are currently in dispute with their employer over pay, terms and conditions. A ballot for industrial action will open on Thursday (16 June). OCS is an accredited living wage employer and has committed to pay its workers £11.05 in London and £9.90 outside the capital, however it is refusing to meet our demands for the payment of the real living wage. To tie in with the opening of the ballot, we have tabled an Early Day Motion (EDM) for MPs to show their support for our demands read more
Other council workers invited to join Wiltshire traffic warden industrial action (24 June) – Social workers and care workers will be balloted for industrial action unless Wiltshire Council repudiates plans for ‘fire and rehire’ pay cuts, says GMB. GMB can confirm that social workers and reablement workers will be balloted to join the ongoing industrial action being undertaken by traffic wardens across Wiltshire. The existing action has taken in two days of strike action so far, and a seven day strike is planned to commence on 30 June 2022. The dispute centres around council plans to remove a contractual unsocial hours payment that will cost council employees up to 20% of their wages. The refusal of council bosses to rule out the controversial practice of “Fire and Rehire” is the final straw, and is why other GMB members are asking to be balloted to join the industrial action being taken by traffic wardens read more
Parking mayhem expected at Wimbledon tennis championships (23 June) – Traffic Wardens operating within the London Borough of Wandsworth have announced new strike dates which will coincide with the All England Lawn Tennis Championships in Wimbledon. Despite the tournament taking place within the London Borough of Merton, many adjoining roads come under the control of Wandsworth, and these roads are expected to become a parking free-for-all, with the traffic wardens not at work. The wardens will be taking action with the support of their union, GMB, as their outsourced employer NSL have made a pay offer that sits well below inflation. The strike will be taking place from Monday 4 July to Friday 8 July, and is their third week of action read more
Chesterfield bin strike called off after workers accept deal (21 June) – The Chesterfield bin strike has been called off after workers accepted a 7.5 per cent pay rise. Workers at Chesterfield Veolia Environmental Services have today [21 June 2022] unanimously accepted the deal which will see rates of pay rise by £2 per hour. The increase take effect from the 1 July and workers will receive backpay from the 1 April 2022 read more
Wiltshire traffic wardens issue 60 fines a day (20 June) – Wiltshire traffic wardens dish out an average of 60 tickets a day – but none were issued on strike days, a GMB investigation shows. During the 53 days from 1 April to 23 May this year, Wiltshire traffic wardens issued 3,140 PCNS – peaking with a massive 121 on 2 April. But on May 7 and 17, when traffic wardens down tools in anger at the council’s pay cut threat, absolutely none were issued. GMB says this means the authority could miss out on up to £200,000 in lost parking charges and fines during the forthcoming week long traffic warden strike [30 June – 7 July] read more
Strike looms at Stafford abrasives company (20 June) – Strike action looms at a Saint Gobain, in Stafford, over a pay dispute. Bosses at the company, which makes sandpaper, diamond blades, tools and other abrasives are tying to impose a real terms pay cut on GMB members. GMB will begin a consultative ballot this month, with a full strike ballot to follow read more
South London garbage chaos avoided as strike called off (17 June) – GMB union has called off a planned strike at two waste transfer stations which would have had a knock-on effect on municipal dumps across South London.
The members, who are employed by Cory Environmental Ltd, have accepted an improved deal of 10 per cent pay rise. The sites threatened by the strike are Smugglers Way, in Wandsworth and Cringle Dock, in Battersea – but all dumps across South London would have seen rubbish building up due to the closure of the two large stations read more
Roehampton Hospital strike avoided as contractor withdraws job cuts plan (16 June) – Sodexo have halted plans to cut services in Queen Mary’s Hospital after GMB union members voted to take strike action
GMB members employed as domestics, housekeepers and porters by outsourcing giant Sodexo in Queen Mary’s Hospital, Roehampton have ended their trade dispute with the company. Sodexo had launched a consultation to make drastic cuts to soft FM services that would have led to redundancies and workers being transferred out of the hospital. The workers voted 100% in favour of taking strike action against the proposals in May which led to a pause in the plans. The company has now confirmed that the consultation will not go ahead read more
Week-long South London hospital strike to go ahead from Monday (15 June) – Cleaners and Hostesses at St Georges Hospital in Tooting will take a full week of strike action beginning Monday 20 June. The workers, who are employed by NHS contractor Mitie, are taking industrial action with the support of their union, GMB. The dispute, which centres around pay and conditions, has already seen large numbers walk out for three days. The previous strike action led to at least one operation being cancelled and hospital wards going uncleaned read more
GMB welcomes the removal of the threat of job cuts to SECAmb staff (15 June) – SECAMB say that 10% of staff might not be adequately protected in the new-look fleet vans, as they will be too tall or too small
GMB union welcomes the decision by South East Coast Ambulance Service (SECAMB) senior management to lift the threat of a potential 10% reduction in front line staff to allow further discussions to take place. The union is the union for NHS Frontline clinicians including paramedics and highly trained control room ambulance staff, and including SECAMB read more
Hinkley Point supply engineers strike (14 June) – Plating engineers creating products to supply to the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station go on strike today [13 June] in a pay dispute. Dozens of workers at Darchem Engineering, in Stockton-Upon-Tees, will walk out today after welders working for same firm were given an additional pay supplement , while the engineers weren’t. Further strikes are planned for 20,21,28 and 29 June. Industrial action could lead to big delays at Hinkley Point C – the £25 billion nuclear reactor in Somerset read more
Rhondda faces bin strike after workers vote for industrial action – Rhondda residents look set to face a bin strike after GMB members in the waste and recycling department voted for industrial action. GMB members at Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council refuse and recycling dept have voted overwhelmingly to support industrial action with a majority of 95 percent. The move could see 130 people strike in May, leaving around 108,000 homes without refuse collections. The union is calling for amendments to the job evaluation scheme after the current system leaves essential workers short-changed for their work. During the pandemic, refuse workers alongside other essential service workers were put at risk, whilst council big wigs worked from home. Over the last decade local government staff have seen their wages cut by around 25 percent read more
Budweiser workers announce summer strike dates – Budweiser workers have announced a series of summer strikes following a pay dispute. A total of 225 GMB members working at BBG’s Samlesbury site, near Preston, will down tools in a series of dates in June in anger over a real terms pay cut. It is the first time workers at the site, which brews Budweiser, Stella Artois, Becks, Boddingtons and Export Pale Ale, have gone in strike in its 50 year history. After months of discussion with the world’s biggest brewer they tabled a full and final offer of 3 per cent increase for 2022 and 3 per cent for 2023 with increases in overtime rates. With the cost-of-living crises and inflation at 11.1%, the offer amounts to a massive pay cut in real terms read more
Fox’s Glacier Mint workers strike over fire and rehire threat – Fox’s Glacier Mint workers will take a full day of strike action tomorrow [April 14] in anger at the company’s fire and rehire threat. Staff at Valeo York, who also make Poppets and humbugs, mint assortments butter mints, rhubarb and custards and lemon sherberts for well-known supermarkets including M&S, will be joined by the Yorkshire Polar Bear and local councillors read more
Barrow bin strike: Six more days of industrial action – Refuse collectors in Barrow have announced six more days of industrial action in their fight for a living wage. GMB members working FCC Environment will walk out on from 30 March to 1 April and then 6 to 8 April read more
Health workers in Lancashire strike in dispute over lack of sick pay and unsocial hours payments (29 June) – OCS workers do the same jobs as many NHS colleagues but they miss out on sick pay when they’re ill, are paid less when they work unsocial hours. Health staff employed by private contractor OCS today (Wednesday) begin a 72-hour strike at a number of locations operated by Lancashire & South Cumbria NHS Trust, says UNISON read more
Abortion is a trade union issue (27 June) – The reversal of Roe v Wade shows clearly that women’s rights must be constantly defended read more
UK’s biggest exam board AQA failing on pay (24 June) – AQA workers being balloted over low pay and new contracts. Pupils across the UK could face delays in receiving their GCSE and A-Level results if exam board AQA fails to improve its pay offer to staff, UNISON is warning today (Friday). Around 160 AQA staff, including those who arrange the setting and marking of exam papers and issue results, are being balloted for strike action after years of below-inflation wage rises. Last year the workforce received a paltry 0.6% pay increase, says the union. The workers have already rejected a 3% offer, which the employer was only prepared to pay if the unions (UNISON and Unite) agreed to bring wage talks to an end. Staff are calling for an increase that keeps pace with the rising cost of living and which makes up for the many years that their pay fell way short of inflation. Talks to try to resolve the dispute have already taken place at conciliation service ACAS. But UNISON says AQA failed to bring anything new to the table read more
Bristol care staff at St Monica Trust announce strikes over fire and rehire plans – Bristol care company St Monica Trust wants to cut pay by £400 a month. Care workers, registered nurses and residential home staff employed by Bristol-based care company St Monica Trust have announced a series of strike dates over threats to sack them unless they accept a pay cut, says UNISON today (17 June). More than 100 staff at four care homes across the south west of England were told in March that they must accept inferior new contracts – costing them thousands of pounds a year and watering down their sick pay – or be fired, says the union. The first strike to oppose the move will take place on 29 June, with further action planned for 2, 5, 10 and 11 July. Strikes will take place in the trust’s care homes across South Gloucestershire, North Somerset, and Bath and North East Somerset, UNISON says read more. Details of the pickets can be found at this link and you can pledge your support by adding your name here
There is a strike fund which is being collected for. Many of these workers are low paid and part time. With cost of living ever rising it’s essential that we can ensure no one feels like they can’t stand up with their colleagues and strike for fear of lost pay. The union will be paying strike pay and members can request hardship payments up to their full wages so no one gets left behind.
For donations please send to the following details with the reference “SMT”
Account name: UNISON South West
Account number: 49021079
Sort Code: 60-83-01
On Saturday we will be meeting at 11.30am for a rally at Greenway Centre in Southmead. We’ll hear from guest speakers from across the trade union movement, sharing why this struggle and others are so important to win for working people.
Join the Facebook event and share it with your friends
University of Leeds members prepare to strike again – Action is over the 2021-22 pay round with member resoundingly rejecting the latest offer. The University of Leeds branch is taking further strike action over the 2021-22 pay round, next week, on 20-24 June. Members have lost 20% of their pay against inflation over 12 years. They have used the pay calculator to show just how many thousands of pounds staff are being cheated in their pay read more
Holiday Pay (23 June) – Members will be aware that there has been ongoing mediation in the PSNI Holiday Pay Case and that negotiations in other areas have been suspended pending the outcome on the advice of NIPSAs solicitors, MTB. However, it has also been decided that the case will be re-listed for hearing in the Supreme Court with the hearing scheduled for December 2022. NIPSA has continued to work on other administrative matters to ensure matters are expedited as soon as possible when an outcome is forthcoming either from the Supreme Court or the mediation. Should there be any progress before the Supreme Court hearing members will be updated read more
CWU launch national strike ballot in Royal Mail Group and call National Gate Meeting on 28th June read more
Royal Mail tells cleaners: ‘No pay rise for you!’ (June 24) – Angry CWU negotiators slam pay betrayal of company’s lowest-paid workers and accuse bosses of ‘broken promises’. Hundreds of workers who clean Royal Mail premises around the UK have been told they will receive no cost-of-living pay rise in this financial year if they were awarded a Real Living Wage (RLW) adjustment in April, directly contradicting a promise by the business not to link the two read more
Rank hypocrisy on executive pay laid bare as BT Group industrial action ballot enters final week (June 24) – BT Group’s double standards on executive versus staff pay have been spectacularly revealed for all to see, with no fewer than three major exposés appearing in the national media in just 24 hours. Taking centre stage in a roll-call of shame on the front page of yesterday’s Daily Mirror, BT CEO Philip Jansen’s £3.5million remuneration package was highlighted as being no less than 86 times average pay levels in BT, Openreach and EE – and an eye-watering 97 times that of the company’s lowest paid workers read more
NEU calls for inflation-plus pay increase for all teachers (22 June) – NEU joint general secretaries write to Nadhim Zahawi as inflation hits 11.7%. With inflation hitting 11.7% (RPI) today, the joint general secretaries of the National Education Union have written to the education secretary Nadhim Zahawi urging him to act to protect teacher living standards. Teacher pay has fallen by a fifth in real terms since 2010, even before this year’s huge increases in inflation. Teacher workload remains at unsustainable levels. Pay cuts and excessive workload combine to intensify the already serious recruitment and retention problems. Failing to recruit or retain enough teachers adds to the workload problems and highlights the damage caused by previous pay cuts, but the Government plans more pay cuts and has not taken effective action on workload read more
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Teachers prepare for national industrial action ahead of pay award uncertainty (19 June) – The NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union will ballot members for national industrial action if the Government does not deliver pay restoration for teachers. The Union will ballot members in England, Wales and Scotland for industrial action in November should the teachers’ pay award for 2022/23 fall short of demands. After 12 years of pay erosion, teachers are now facing the biggest squeeze on their living standards for half a century. Energy bills alone have shot up by 54%, but the value of teachers’ pay has slumped by 20%. Now two in three teachers are being forced consider how much longer they can afford to remain in the profession. To prevent an unprecedented retention crisis and protect the future of education, the NASUWT believes teachers must receive a 12% pay award this year. NASUWT members from across the UK took part in the largest demonstration of working people in a decade yesterday, marching for a better deal for teachers as part of a national cost of living rally in Central London read more
EIS wins court victory to stop Faculties in Dundee (21 June) – Late this afternoon, the EIS has been successful in obtaining an interim interdict against Dundee City Council at the Court of Session in Edinburgh regarding its implementation of introducing faculties read more
EIS issues formal strike notice over Dundee schools faculty plan – The EIS has issued a legal strike notice to Dundee Council over the authority’s plans to introduce a faculty structure in its Secondary schools. An initial day of strike action will take place on the 22nd of June across all of Dundee’s Secondary schools. Following the Council’s decision to press ahead with its plans, and to announce the recruitment of Faculty heads in the media this week, the EIS has now withdrawn an invitation to the Lord Provost to speak at the EIS Annual General Meeting (AGM) which starts at Dundee Caird Hall on Thursday. The EIS AGM is regularly held in Dundee, and is worth around £1Millon to the local economy, but the EIS may now seek to review its association with the city in light of the ongoing dispute read more
UCU statement on overturning of Roe vs. Wade (24 June) – The overturning of Roe vs. Wade by the Supreme Court of the United States is an incredibly dark moment. It will threaten the lives of millions of women and those who need abortions across America. UCU, the largest post-16 education trade union in the world, sends solidarity and love to our sisters in the United States amid this devastating rollback of their rights. This decision will horrify all those across the world who believe in freedom, bodily autonomy, and basic human rights. We in the trade union movement must link arms globally and be at the forefront of defending and winning back these freedoms. Indeed, abortion in the UK is still not a legal right and is under threat read more. Sign petition: take action now
Overwhelming vote for strike action over low pay at Hugh Baird College (21 June) – UCU called on High Baird College in Merseyside to increase its 1% pay offer after staff overwhelmingly voted for strike action. Unless management makes an improved offer UCU said it will strike during key dates early in the next academic year. Over 93% of UCU members at Hugh Baird College who voted backed strikes in an industrial ballot that closed yesterday. 98% of members also voted yes to taking industrial action short of strike action, which could include working strictly to contract and refusing to undertake additional activities. Turnout was 74% read more
UCU slams Association of Colleges pay recommendation as ‘totally unacceptable’ (21 June) – UCU today condemned the latest pay offer of 2.5% from the Association of Colleges (AoC), made at a meeting yesterday, as ‘totally unacceptable.’ UCU said the refusal of college employers to pay staff fairly was ‘beyond insulting’ as the cost of living crisis worsens. Relentless real terms pay cuts since 2009 mean further education staff pay has fallen behind inflation in that period by more than 35%. AoC’s insistence on forcing a huge real-terms pay cut on staff comes as UCU members at 33 further education colleges are being balloted for industrial action over low pay and unmanageable workloads read more
Strike ballot opens today at colleges across England over low pay (14 June) – Strikes at 33 colleges in England could be on the cards as industrial ballots opened today in a dispute over low pay, unmanageable workloads and professional respect. The ballot closes on Friday 15 July read more
Extra strike day at Richmond upon Thames College over Fire & Rehire – Staff at Richmond upon Thames College will warn prospective students and parents about the behaviour of college management as an extra strike day was called to coincide with college open days in a bitter dispute over plans to fire and rehire 127 teachers. UCU members at Richmond upon Thames College will down tools on Tuesday 28 June, both of which is an open day. The college describes the open days as an opportunity to ‘meet our teachers’ and ‘speak to our teaching staff’. The dispute has seen over 70 staff take five consecutive days of strike action last month (Monday 23 to Friday 27 May) as they try to stop plans by management to sack all 127 teachers at the college and force them to reapply for their jobs on worse terms and conditions. UCU had offered to pause any further action if management lifts the threat of compulsory dismissals for staff that do not sign new contracts. However, management has repeatedly refused and insists staff would have to reapply for their jobs on new contracts that would see them lose 10 days holiday read more
Support the UCU Goldsmiths strikes – University and College Union (UCU) members at Goldmiths University are continuing to take strike action as part of an ongoing dispute over plans to sack 46 members of staff. Goldsmiths wants to make the cuts as part of a ‘recovery plan’ after years of financial mismanagement have left the university with a £12.7m deficit. The union says the ‘recovery plan’ is a deal struck with Lloyds and Natwest banks to use redundancies to improve the university’s finances. Following a failure by the university last week to reduce the number of compulsory redundancies staff have been left with no option but to take industrial action in defence of jobs. The university has already been hit with a global boycott which means UCU is asking its members, other trade unions, labour movement organisations and the international academic community to support its members at Goldsmiths in any way possible. Follow @GoldsmithsUCU on twitter and on Facebook
UCU fighting fund: the link is here and donations to the fund are spent on supporting members involved in important disputes.
Firefighters’ 2% pay offer “utterly inadequate” (June 27) – Firefighters and firefighter control staff have responded angrily to a 2% pay offer from fire and rescue employers. The union’s executive council is recommending rejection of the pay offer to members. The 2% pay offer is against a current rate of inflation of 9.1% (CPI, year on year to May 2022). The fire service annual pay award is due on 1 July. The pay offer comes against a background of huge long-term pay cuts to firefighters’ pay. Between 2009 and 2021, firefighters’ real pay has been cut by 12%, or nearly £4,000. The pay offer will now go for consideration by members, with the union’s executive council recommending rejection. Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary said: “The FBU has today received a proposal from our employers of a 2% increase in pay. This is utterly inadequate and would deliver a further cut in real wages to firefighters in all roles in the midst of the cost of living crisis. This latest insulting proposal follows 12 years of government-imposed reductions in real wages…Firefighters will now inevitably begin to discuss reactions, including industrial action. The Fire Brigades Union and our members do not consider or take industrial action lightly or without ensuring that all efforts to resolve the issue have been exhausted…” read more
NUJ chapel shames Reach over hypocrisy (24 June) – A motion from the NUJ Reach group chapel urges bosses to deliver a fair pay package that values staff and begins to address pay inequalities. The NUJ Reach group chapel has passed a motion following publication of the Daily Mirror’s front page on 23 June, highlighting salaries of fat cat bosses, earning up to 86 times the average worker’s pay read more
Bristol City Council bans local democracy reporters from press briefings (23 June) – NUJ condemns “anti-democratic” decision to ban reporters in attempt to undermine quality journalism. The decision by Bristol Council follows a question asked by LDR Alex Seabrook to mayor Marvin Rees on his decision to fly to Canada in April, for a 14-minute TED talk on climate change. Seabrook’s question was met with resistance by Saskia Konynenburg, head of communications, who questioned the reporter’s credentials, stating he was not a newspaper journalist read more
BBC North West journalists vote for work to rule – NUJ members are making a stand about the damaging impact of job cuts on news outpt in the region. As well as working with a significantly reduced workforce, staff at BBC North West are now expected to take on more and more technical duties previously carried out by skilled technical staff. If allowed to continue, the quality of the regional news programmes will suffer and deteriorate, they say. More than 97 per cent of NUJ members in the chapel voted in favour of industrial action. It follows the BBC’s decision to cut £25m from BBC England’s budget, leading to 450 job cuts cross England. The vast majority of journalists who work for BBC North West are NUJ members read more
Concessions from Natural England mean end to Prospect industrial action for now (24 June) – Prospect members at Natural England who have been taking part in industrial action for most 2022 have won concessions from the employer. In particular Natural England has agreed to work much more closely with Prospect and PCS with unions forming part of the teams on the Staff Framework Review and Pay Reform projects read more
Equity at the Cost of Living march 18 June – On Saturday 18 June 2022 trade unions and groups from across the movement came out to demand a stronger government response to the Cost of Living Crisis. Equity were out in full force to demonstrate our commitment to a better standard of living, alongside over 15,000 people walking through London in order to demonstrate read more
#ReinstateMax: defend sacked Tesco USDAW rep Max McGee – months on from exhausting all appeals, Max McGee is preparing to take Tesco to an Employment Tribunal over his trade union victimisation and sacking. A GoFundMe page has been set up to donate to Max’s reinstatement campaign and trade union comrades are encouraged to raise the campaign at their Trade Union branches and Trades Councils over the coming weeks. Link to the page below:
Messages of solidarity and photos can be sent to [email protected]
LSWU statement on CBA action and the response of the BSB and Lord Chief Justice (27 June) – We are disappointed by the indications by the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and Lord Chief Justice (LCJ) that those participating in the ‘days of action’ this week will or may be subjected to disciplinary sanctions. While every case will turn on its own facts, we renew our commitment to support the profession as a whole, the collective will of our members and every individual member who plans to engage in such action
‘Everyone out!’ declare luxury apartment cleaners (20 June) – The cleaners at Riverside Quarter luxury apartments in Wandsworth have voted to strike. 100% of UVW members voted to take industrial action over their bosses’ failure to provide them with decent terms and conditions. The strike ballot results follow the news on Friday 10 June from the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC) panel accepting their statutory recognition claim. On the eve of the ballot results, the cleaners bosses, Endersham Ltd, confirmed they were already in talks with clients about a pay rise – UVW awaits news. Ernesto Suarez Velarde, cleaning supervisor and UVW member from Bolivia, commented on the strike ballot results and said: “This is another step forward, another point in our favour, another battle we have won to be able to strike. It is very important, in any group in any country of the world, to be united so that we get what we want. We are defending our rights, because the truth is we need our wages to be increased, it is very difficult now with the inflation that is affecting workers not only in this country but all over the world.” A UVW spokesperson said: “Forcing your boss to sit down and negotiate with you is a good thing. But having the power to stand up and walk out, is the goal. That’s why our members at Riverside not only went for recognition and won in the CAC, but they also voted YES to strike.” They continued, “Our members are undeterred and will continue until they receive a proper living wage.” Read more
Pub staff in Brighton fight back against union busting (17 June) – “We feel this is an attack on ourselves, workers that dared to organise, join a union and demand decent working conditions” – Saint James Tavern bar staff and UVW members. The brave Saint James Tavern pub workers in Brighton were called in for disciplinary proceedings by their bosses in mid June after they announced their lawful strike action. The workers and their union, United Voices of the World (UVW), believe this amounts to union victimisation. They are bringing legal action against the pub landlords. The UVW members have been accused of having defamed and brought the business into disrepute in the media and social media but have not been provided with any evidence to back this up. The workers said in a statement that they felt this was “an attack on us, workers that dared to organise, join a union and demand decent working conditions: full sick pay scheme, £11.50 an hour, 24-hour response security team, an end to zero-hour contracts and no cuts to staff hours.” Read more
Outsourced Workers at LSHTM Set to Strike over Pay Following Escalating Union Victimisation (20 June) – Outsourced cleaners, porters, post room, and security staff working at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) have voted unanimously in favour of strike action over poverty pay amidst the cost of living crisis. In April, workers from the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) launched a campaign to bring an end to a discriminatory pay gap that would pay the majority-migrant and BAME workers below the lowest grade of the university-wide pay scale. This follows only months after a damning report revealing ingrained structural racism across the prestigious university, at academic staff and student level read more
Barristers take action over pay and conditions
South Eastern Circuit – Central Criminal Court (Old Bailey)
Midland Circuit – Birmingham Crown Court
Northern Circuit – Manchester Crown Court
North Eastern Circuit – Leeds Crown Court
Western Circuit – Bristol Crown Court
Wales & Chester Circuit – Cardiff Crown Court
Week 1: Monday 27th and Tuesday 28th June 2022
Week 2: Monday 4th, Tuesday 5th and Wednesday 6th July 2022
Week 3: Monday 11th, Tuesday 12th, Wednesday 13th and Thursday 14th July 2022
Week 4: Monday 18th, Tuesday 19th, Wednesday 20th, Thursday 21st and Friday July 22nd 2022.
In w/c 25th July: the days of action are suspended for 1 week.
In w/c 1st August: the days of action recommence for a further full week.
SIPTU members in Irish Wheelchair Association across the country to strike on 5th July (26 June) – SIPTU members employed by the Irish Wheelchair Association (IWA) have voted by 97% to 3% to conduct a work stoppage on Tuesday, 5th July, at its care centres across the country in a pay dispute in which they are demanding their first wage rise for 14 years read more
Unions win strong protections for workers when Irish Water takes control of water services (24 June) – There will be no compulsory transfer of local authority staff to Irish Water when it becomes the single national water authority next year. This protection has been underpinned in a new ‘Framework for Future Delivery of Water Services,’ hammered out between unions representing water workers, Irish Water and local authority representatives in the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) read more
Pentonville 5: Fifty Year Anniversary – this Friday 1st July 6pm at East Ham Town Hall, Barking Rd, E6 2RP Facebook event
Join this 50 year celebration of a great working class victory when mass union action forced the release of five dockers’ shops stewards jailed by the Tory government. The lessons of Pentonville are relevant to the situation workers face today. The key importance of solidarity and joint union action are top of the agenda. Celebrate that victory which shows us the way forward.
Yemen: journalist killed in car explosion (21 June) – The NUJ has condemned the targeted attack of journalist Saber al-Haidari on 21 June read more on NUJ website
Fight blacklisting and victimisation of union reps
Support GARY CARNEY, TRAIN OPERATOR – LONDON UNDERGROUND
Defend Adrian Mitchell RMT driver on London Underground
Donate to solidarity campaign of Moe Muhsin Manir Unite bus rep Email messages of support to Moe: [email protected]
Trade union rep victimisation at Woolwich Ferry reaches ‘obscene levels’, says Unite
Unite: Ealing’s Labour council ‘actively helping’ Serco ‘hound’ union rep from civil enforcement job
St Mungos management escalate dispute by suspending Unite rep – sign petition: End the culture of fear at St Mungo’s – model motion
St Mungo’s: Unite will not tolerate victimisation and bullying
Sign petition: Reinstate Gary Bolister sacked GMB rep at Islington Council
Watch Reel News video: Victimised union reps: Act like it’s you and fight back
Reinstate John Boken Shropshire NEU rep – For more details and send solidarity messages, email [email protected]
Sign petition to support Redbridge NEU Rep Keiran Mahon
Watch Reel News video: Huddersfield teachers strike to defend Louise Lewis
Victimised Tesco warehouse rep Max McGee fighting for reinstatement read more. There is now a GoFundMe to support the campaign (https://www.gofundme.com/f/reinstate-max-usdaw-rep-socialist) and Max can be invited to speak at Usdaw and other union branches plus trades councils ([email protected])
QC appointed to lead the independent Unite inquiry into blacklisting (25 Mar) – Unite is delighted to announce that Nick Randall QC and John Carl Townsend have been appointed to investigate the possible collusion by union officers in blacklisting. Over the past months, evidence gathering by Thompsons solicitors has continued, with many blacklisted construction workers and other witnesses having already been interviewed. The work of the independent investigators is expected to start officially on 11 April read more
#SPYCops Inquiry exposes state surveillance of workers movement
Keep up with developments and read and watch campaigners’ statements on the Campaign Opposing Police Surveillance (COPS) and Undercover Policing Inquiry websites and spycops info Facebook group
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
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
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 the Queens Speech in December 2019 and cannot be trusted and is now attacking the right to protest through its Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill.
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 finish but has now been extended because of the 2nd lockdown. But it’s clear that the Tories are looking to end it asap.
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
18 TUC National Demonstration – 12noon Parliament Square, Westminster, London SW1P 3BD read more
2 NSSN Conference 2022 11am-4.30pm Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL Facebook event
9 Durham Miners’ Gala 2022 Facebook event
15-17 Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival 2022 read more
11 NSSN TUC Rally 1pm Brighton
PHONE 07952 283 558
EMAIL mailto:[email protected]
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
FACEBOOK NSSN GROUP or STOP The CUTS Likes page
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE