This Friday is the anniversary of N30…TUC name the date for a 24 hour general strike!
Yes…on Friday it will be 12 months ago to the day when over 2 million public sector workers went on strike to defend their pensions. It may have been just a year ago but how many have forgotten about that day? The biggest single day of strike action this country has seen for possibly 85 years, since the general strike of 1926. But we believe that when you close your eyes and remember how great a day that was or look at the photos you took or the videos on YouTube, you’ll realise that it really did happen and it IS possible for workers to take action in their millions. Because that’s what happened on N30 2011.
It wasn’t just a strike, it was a mobilisation of working people. The streets were full in London, Glasgow, Belfast and Cardiff but also Taunton, Brighton, Newcastle and almost every town and city throughout the country. We’ve no doubt that it was the sights and sounds of workers and their unions on the march again that has led to the countless disputes this year, including victories like the Sparks, London buses and the Sova recycling workers in Sheffield.
N30 should have been the beginning of a programme of co-ordinated action that could have defeated this government. But some of the union leaders settled and killed the momentum, despite the best efforts of those like PCS, POA, RMT, Unite, ISU, NIPSA and UCU who tried to salvage the dispute this May. But N30 showed that our demand that the TUC co-ordinate a 24-hour general strike against the billions of pounds of cuts we’ve had and the 80% to come isn’t a pipedream but necessary and possible. If a strike of the proportions of N30 was organised with the time for unions to prepare properly and co-ordinate ballots and live disputes, how many other workplaces would see it as the chance to raise their grievances against their employer – to strike together in maximum strength?
N30 2012 will be like most days are this year – a day of strikes and protests. PCS members in the Department of Transport will be on strike and all other PCS branches will holding protests and to build for their national strike ballot in the New Year on pay and to fight attacks on terms and conditions and union facility time. Low-paid cleaners in RMT will be on the 2nd day of a 48 hour strike for a decent wage.
We’ll be supporting these workers but imagine what we could achieve, if we went on strike together? The NSSN has called a lobby of the TUC General Council on Tuesday December 11th – now from 8.30am. It’s outside TUC HQ in Great Russell Street, London WC1B 3LS. We took up to a 1000 union activists to Brighton to lobby the TUC conference in September to successfully build support for the POA motion calling for the unions to “consider the practicalities of a general strike”. Come to the lobby on December 11th and let the union leaders know how “practical” and absolutely vital it is!
NSSN news – 2 successful meetings in Yorkshire and Northern Ireland
Congratulations to Yorkshire NSSN who held a brilliant conference last Saturday. About 14 individual unions were represented and about five trades councils. Striking NHS workers from Mid-Yorkshire spoke alongside the FBU, Sparks, POA, RMT, NUM and others in the opening session.
We were also delighted to support the successful public meeting of our sister organisation, the Network of Trade Union Activists in Belfast last Thursday. NSSN national chair Rob Williams spoke on the need for a 24-hour general strike.
Dave Smith and others were held by police after visiting parliament to hear the evidence of blacklister Ian Kerr. Dave writes
“Free at last – the police didn’t like our protest during the Select Committee hearing. Seized our handmade placards and had handcuffs waiting outside at the finish!”
“One revelation after another today as convicted blacklister Ian Kerr broke his silence today and gave nearly 4 hours’ worth of evidence to the Scottish Affairs Select Committee investigation into blacklisting.
Among the more jaw dropping evidence:
Kerr has been a full-time blacklister since 1969 – previously employed by the Economic League before he became the Chief Executive of the Consulting Association.
Cullum McAlpine – Director of several companies within the Sir Robert McAlpine group was the first Chairman of the Consulting Association after providing a £10,000 start-up loan following the demise of the Economic League.
Consulting Association meetings took place in the Sir Robert McAlpine London HQ
Sir Robert McAlpine paid Ian Kerr’s £5,000 fine, solicitors fees, and costs associated with closing the organisation including redundancy money for the 4 staff to the order of £25,0000 in order to keep McAlpine’s name out of the scandal.
Kerr was paid £50k per year + car + bonus + BUPA + life insurance
Kerr’s wife worked as the organisation’s book-keeper.
The main contact for each company was at Director level or similar.
Police held regular meetings with senior members of the blacklisting operation with information flowing both ways
Union officials provided information about their own members that ended up on the blacklist files. Ian Davidson MP described this as “the union putting the kybosh on someone’s employment”
Kerr and other blacklist spies were sent undercover into union meetings.
Widespread blacklisting took place on the Olympics construction project by McAlpine, Skanska and Balfour Beatty.
Crossrail – “An awful lot of discussion took place at Consulting Association meetings about the Crossrail Project”
200 Environmental activists were blacklisted (these files were not seized by the ICO)
All documents and computer records have now been burnt or destroyed
Other blacklisting operations were in existence including Caprim Limited which was set up by the former managing Director of the Economic League
Kerr refused to answer the question as to whether he was part of the official vetting operation for Irish workers on MoD projects – after a long pause he asked if he could answer that question in private
Safety Reps were blacklisted if they were too persistent and likely to delay a project.
The Consulting Association breaches at least two articles of the European Convention on Human Rights – Pamela Nash MP.”
Defend the Four victory
Unison has withdrawn further appeals against the union’s defeats in lower courts! After five and a half years of unjust allegations and smears, the Four have won! http://www.stopthewitchhunt.org.uk/ Reel News have produced a video: http://reelnews.co.uk/defend-the-4-victory/
NUJ and the Leveson Inquiry:
As we send out this bulletin, Lord Justice Leveson will be publishing the findings of his inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics in the press and his examination of the relationship of the press with the public, police and politicians. You can read the response of the NUJ here: http://www.nuj.org.uk/innerPagenuj.html?docid=2720
BBC Christmas strike threat grows as redeployment row escalates
Doncaster Stobart/Tesco Drivers to strike 6 December: http://www.unitetheunion.org/news__events/latest_news/doncaster_tesco_drivers_to_s-1.aspx
Arriva London North – 2,000 bus workers take strike action on 29 November: http://www.unitetheunion.org/news__events/latest_news/thousands_of_london_bus_worker.aspx
Bromley bin workers strike over sacking of colleagues: http://www.unitetheunion.org/news__events/latest_news/bosses_urged_to__see_sense__as.aspx
Dial-a-Ride closure means elderly and disabled could lose out in five London boroughs: http://www.unitetheunion.org/news__events/latest_news/dial-a-ride_closure_means_elde.aspx
Scottish paper bag workers told ‘No holiday’ between July and December: http://www.unitetheunion.org/news__events/latest_news/scottish_paper_bag_workers_tol.aspx
Palmers Green Dispute: Member wins appeal. Recent information from the union in DWP http://t.co/TLfz6U7a via @pcs_union
PCS DWP GEC voted unanimously for strike ballot opposing compulsory redundancies and fighting for extra staff. Ballot runs 12/12/12-10/01/13 http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/department_for_work_and_pensions_group/dwp-news.cfm/id/F23869B9-7BAE-4098-B253667B3B127703
PCS Work programme preventing people finding jobs figures reveal: The government’s flagship outsourced back: http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/news_and_events/news_centre/index.cfm/id/20A0C140-94BA-4E5E-B017D08503E302F2
Reports of Group action: http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/news_and_events/pcs_comment/index.cfm/id/CEFF757B-F850-407B-90226BB716BB4933
Scrooge bosses in DWP are restricting Christmas leave for PCS members in some sites. Members angry about this have agreed to ballot for strike action on New Year’s Eve as it’s completely unnecessary for management to demand there are 75% of staff in between Christmas and New Year to deal with lower volumes of work. So far Seaham and Swansea pension centres will be balloting for action.
“Absolutely solid” Connaught School strike against #academy plan http://t.co/CaFNaiwz
Schools face cuts to pay for £1bn academies overspend http://t.co/Lh13YP0S
Revealed: Fate of axed Remploy staff was sealed as part of secret deal
by private firm one year ago http://t.co/g6jJnFQm
Driver shortage affects 22 trains – http://t.co/qMJPWW3b
RMT BALLOT ON CROSS COUNTRY SERVICES FROM PENZANCE TO ABERDEEN http://www.rmt.org.uk/Templates/Internal.asp?NodeID=166200&int1stParentNodeID=89732
RMT slams “company provocation” as SERCO plans to cut staffing and maintenance to the bone on dangerous Northern Isles routes http://www.rmt.org.uk/Templates/Internal.asp?NodeID=166051&int1stParentNodeID=89732
RMT confirms co-ordinated strikes and national campaign by transport cleaners in fight for pay justice http://www.rmt.org.uk/Templates/Internal.asp?NodeID=166199&int1stParentNodeID=89732
LONDON TRANSPORT CLEANERS AND SECURITY STAFF TO PROTEST AT TFL AS RMT RAMPS UP NATIONAL FIGHT FOR PAY JUSTICE http://www.rmt.org.uk/Templates/Internal.asp?NodeID=166248&int1stParentNodeID=89732b
Cleaners hit northern cities in national fight for pay justice http://www.rmt.org.uk/Templates/Internal.asp?NodeID=166266&int1stParentNodeID=89732
Firefighters warn – emergency response to flooding threatened by cutbacks: Relentless cuts to frontline 999… London Fire Brigade station closures, 17 were identified last month but now the number could increase to 31 fire stations closing. http://t.co/rBFchH9S
Clerical staff at Mid-Yorkshire Hospitals take action against pay cuts and redundancies:
http://www.unison-yorks.org.uk/ Messages of support to: [email protected]
Ireland: Big demo against austerity http://www.socialistworld.net/doc/6060
Singapore: First strike in 25 years! http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/nov/28/chinese-bus-drivers-strike-singapore
Clydebank Trade Union Council Public Meeting. Free Tuition, Free Bus Passes, Free Prescriptions – Can We Afford Them? The Hub Community Centre, Kilbowie Road, Clydebank
London Hazards – AGM 6.30pm (prompt) Thursday 29th Nov @ Conway Hall http://www.lhc.org.uk/http:/www.lhc.org.uk/london-hazards-agm-6-30pm-prompt-thursday-29th-nov-conway-hall
PCS 15 minute protests http://www.pcs.org.uk/en/news_and_events/news_centre/index.cfm/id/F00939D7-4B97-4F65-A26F0EF4915D33BA
PCS Strike against DVLA office closures
Brighton activity: Head down to support the pickets at the top of Trafalgar Street, from 8:30am.
Then from 12:30-1:30 PCS are holding lunchtime protests outside the Job Centre on Edward Street over attacks on terms and conditions in the civil service
GMB to hold demo outside of doomed Remploy factory 11am – Manor Mill Lane, Millshaw, Leeds, LS11 8DF) Please support.
Oppose the South West Pay Cartel, March and Demo 11am College Green Bristol
Save Bolton NHS! Rally 12.30pm Cheadle Square Bolton http://www.saveboltonaccidentandemergency.org.uk/
Autumn Budget Statement Protests:
London: March from King’s College, the Strand to Downing Street.
Called by UCU London Region
Rally at Downing Street
5pm Birmingham High St, B4 7SL
Rally in defence of public services, the NHS and the Welfare State
Budget Day Protest! Austerity isn’t working!
5.45 pm Clock Tower Brighton
Speakers from NHS and Council Unions, and campaigners for public services
A day of action has also been called for students to organize local protests against attacks on education
Barnet’s ‘Easyjet’ Council is transferring over 500 workers to arch-exploiter of public services Capita. There is the threat of jobs being transferred out of borough. A lobby of Barnet council has been called for 6pm. Send messages of support to: [email protected]
LANAC conference Leicester Adult Education College, Leicester LE1 6HL http://classroomteachers.blogspot.co.uk/2012/11/come-to-lanac-conference-on-dec-8.html#!/2012/11/come-to-lanac-conference-on-dec-8.html
Manchester demo against cuts 12.30pm All Saints (Cavendish Rd/Oxford Rd) http://www.coalitionagainstcuts.org.uk/
NSSN lobby TUC to NAME THE DATE for a general strike. http://shopstewards.net/2012/11/nssn-to-lobby-tuc-general-council-on-december-11th/ Please note the lobby now starts at 8.30am
Facebook main group ‘National Shop Stewards Network’ & ‘Stop the cuts’
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 07952 283 558
Post: NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9D
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