NSSN 179 – BFAWU ‘Fast Food Rights’ DoA 15th February

The Bakers, Food and Allied Workers’ Union (BFAWU), Youth Fight for Jobs, National Shop Stewards Network, Unite the Resistance, DPAC and John McDonnell MP and other supporters of the new Fast Food Rights initiative are launching our campaign with a day of action on Saturday 15th February.

We’ve been inspired by the movement in the USA. Fast food workers there have taken wildcat strike action, in some instances, demanding a fourfold increase in their pay, to reflect the real cost of living – the ‘Fight 4 15’, a $15/hr minimum wage. This groundswell of support helped propel Socialist Alternative member Kshama Sawant to victory in Seattle.

More and more young people are forced into low-paying, super-exploitative jobs in the fast food industry – not just as stop-gaps, but permanently. When young workers realise that they’ll be stuck in these under-employed jobs for the foreseeable future, they’ll be pushed to fight back. A Unite the Union survey showed that 5.5m workers in Britain are on zero-hour contracts.

BFAWU have raised the sights of workers everywhere with their strike at the Hovis factory in Wigan, showing that zero-hour contracts can be beaten. Last year, Youth Fight for Jobs launched a new initiative, ‘Are you Sick of your Boss?’ to take up the growing issue of under-employment and respond to a sharp rise in the prevalence of zero-hour contracts. Armed with Sick of your Boss leaflets Youth Fight for Jobs have marched straight into shops and handed them to staff. Fast Food Rights will be doing the same on its day of action, this time handing recruitment forms for the BFAWU directly to fast food workers ready to join.

Across the country, on Saturday 15th February, Youth Fight for Jobs alongside BFAWU is organising protests through Fast Food Rights. In London, we’re meeting at the corner of Tottenham Court Road at 1pm, marching along Oxford Street, encouraging McDonalds, Burger King, and Costa staff to get organised, demonstrating to fight for our rights. Fat cat corporations like McDonalds are more than happy to leave there staff in the lurch, suffering on zero-hour contracts and Workfare, while McDonalds use these schemes to rake in billions of £ in profits.

With Fast Food Rights we’ve already done preparatory work, leafleted the staff in these stores on numerous occasions, to explain our protest is not against them. Youth Fight for Jobs is enthusiastically supporting Fast Food Rights because it represents a significant step forward. BFAWU as a trade union have taken it on themselves to organise the unorganised. Hopefully, through our struggle starting on Saturday, we’ll be able to further build BFAWU, and gain a momentum so other trade unions join the campaign alongside us.

Ian Pattison

Youth Fight for Jobs

Email – [email protected]

Website – www.youthfightforjobs.com/


For more details, click here to go to the related news story on Fast Food Rights website; email [email protected]   or on the web at www.fastfoodrights.wordpress.com   where there are links to Twitter and our Facebook page. BFAWU website www.bfawu.org/





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’, HSNC – sort code 40-06-41, account number 90143790. Our address is NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE. Affiliation letter here

And if you can, come to one of our regional Conferences. If there is not one in your area, get in touch to either assist in organising or have a speaker at one of your meetings or events. Contact Rob or Linda on [email protected]

The 8th Annual NSSN Conference will be on Saturday 5th July in Conway Hall – 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL – delegate/visitor fee £6 more here




Union News




RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said: “After two days of intensive and detailed discussions through the offices of ACAS we have now received proposals that halt the implementation of the job cuts set out in the HR1 document which gives us the opportunity to discuss all of the issues away from the pressure cooker.

“We now have a golden opportunity to look again in detail at all of the concerns we have raised about the impact of the cuts on our members and the services that they provide to Londoners. That is exactly what we have been calling for throughout this dispute.



Defend Mark Harding – drop the charges now, defend our right to picket

(From the facebook page)

Fantastic meeting in support of Mark tonight (10th Feb). Steve Hedley, RMT Asst Gen Sec kicked it off followed by Dave O’Hare, RMT rep on Mark’s line, the Hammersmith & City.
Mark himself was able to attend & speak following the victory by the union’s legal team today in overturning the bail conditions that banned him from all union activity.
Over the weekend hundreds of messages of support from trades unionists, TU branches, social justice activists and individuals (which we’ll try to collate) flooded in, supporting Mark.
Tonight not less than 150 people turned up to the meeting. It was by far the biggest meeting anyone could remember at the Exmouth, and at one point, when Steve Hedley was speaking, the meeting had to be stopped because folk simply couldn’t get in; they were queueing on the stairs and down in the street.



‘Baffling’ Babcock reject Acas talks fuelling pay injustice at Faslane & Coulport

Eight hundred workers at the Faslane and Coulport nuclear naval and armament bases will undertake mass meetings tomorrow (Tuesday 11 February) to discuss potential strike dates after Babcock Marine’s baffling refusal to enter conciliation talks.



Unite calls for independent inquiry, as Yorkshire ambulance staff prepare to strike twice

A call has been made for an independent inquiry by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) into the long-running Yorkshire ambulance dispute, as paramedics and ambulance staff prepare for two more strikes in the next week.




Brighton NHS Win For GMB

GMB Welcomes Recommendation To Keep Sexual Health Services In Brighton And Hove Part Of NHS



Ealing NHS Strike

GMB Members Employed By Compass Medirest At Ealing Hospital To Strike On 12 And 13th Feb Over Two Tier Workforce





Solway Members Vote to Strike

In a long running dispute with the company, members at Solway Foods, Corby, have voted overwhelmingly for industrial action. More details will follow. http://bit.ly/LRFP3Q



North Yorkshire firefighters to join demonstration against austerity

Firefighters from across North Yorkshire will take part in a regional demonstration against austerity next month.

The ‘Better Way’ demo has been organised by the Yorkshire and the Humber Trade Union Congress (TUC) and will be held on Saturday 8 March in York.

The march will assemble outside Clifford’s Tower at 11am, finishing nearby at 12.15pm, and organisers hope to highlight a better way to help the economy grow and “protect society”.



“To all London FBU branches

Further to our message below, we are disappointed to tell you that Ashley Brown’s appeal against his sacking was rejected on Friday by Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service.

The FBU is now providing assistance to Ashley in his preparation for an employment tribunal, and members in Hertfordshire are discussing the possibility of industrial action in support of him.

Meanwhile, donations to the relief fund established for Ashley and his family are still very much encouraged, as are messages of support (see details in email below).

Yours in unity




Let’s stand up for education!

The NUT has announced a national strike across England and Wales on Wednesday 26 March in pursuit of the disputes that Michael Gove has caused with the profession around pay, pensions and conditions. In the run up to the strike we will engage in all talks and encourage our members to leaflet parents and engage with politicians.




We are worth it say local government members

Public service workers across the UK gathered to protest against the state of local government pay and the disastrous impact of cuts to jobs and local services yesterday



Further strikes announced by Glasgow residential care workers

Glasgow residential care workers have voted to escalate their industrial action in their dispute over the council’s plans to impose new job roles, longer shift patterns and a £1,495 a year pay cut.

UNISON has announced that a 72 hour strike will start from 8am on Friday 14 February.

Please send messages of support to:

[email protected]

To make donations to the strike fund – make cheques payable to:

“Unison Glasgow City Branch”

UNISON Glasgow City Branch, 84 Bell Street, G1 1LQ



POA launch mass March, Rally and Lobby of Parliament on 19th March 2014

The National Executive Committee is to begin a detailed campaign strategy commencing on the 19th March 2014 at the Central Methodist Hall, Westminster, London.


The launch and theme of our campaign leading up to the General Election in 2015 will be as follows;


68 is too late Pension Campaign.

Violence in the Workplace.

Privatisation of Public Services and Prisons.



Within these four elements lots of issues will develop in relation to budget cuts, prison closures, terms and conditions of employment, personal protective equipment, overcrowding and mental health issues. We are sure there are many other areas that will be expanded upon during the launch and debates.


Our intent is to bring our issues into the public domain to gain the general public’s support and ensure politicians of all political parties understand they need to make commitments in the Election Manifestos to ensure workers in the Criminal Justice System from prisons to our Secure Psychiatric Hospitals and the Immigration Services are treated fairly.






Probation unions seek assistance from International Labour Organisation over TR

Napo, Unison and GMB have today referred the government to the International Labour Organisation an arm of the United Nations responsible for monitoring workers rights across the world. http://www.napo.org.uk/about/news/news.cfm/newsid/333



Other News

Bedroom Tax defeated in Scotland!! Today’s vote (Feb 5) in the Scottish parliament has confirmed that no tenant in Scotland will have to pay the Bedroom Tax from 1st April 2014. The Scottish government have at last, albeit almost a year after the introduction of the hated Tax, ensured the money will be available to cover every tenant’s Bedroom Tax in Scotland. This is a huge victory for the campaign read more




Tens of Thousands in North Carolina Vow ‘Not Now, Not Ever’

Tens of thousands of marchers took to the streets of Raleigh, North Carolina, Saturday to show their opposition to the extreme right-wing agenda that has gripped the state since the Tea Party gained control of the legislature and governor’s office. – See more at: http://www.labornotes.org/2014/02/tens-thousands-north-carolina-vow-not-now-not-ever#sthash.Bw5n0DQz.dpuf


Cambodia: Unions Threaten Nationwide Strike if 21 Prisoners Not Released

Sixteen unions threatened Monday to organize a nationwide strike if the 21 activists and protesters jailed following garment industry protests on January 2 and 3 are not released on bail Tuesday.

The unions also called for charges against the 21 prisoners, 16 of whom began a hunger strike in prison on Sunday, and two other prisoners released on bail Saturday, to be dropped.



Bangladesh: 16 garment factories sack union leaders

The labour ministry has completed its investigation against the 16 garment factories that have allegedly fired their trade union leaders in recent weeks, violating labour laws.
The development comes a few weeks before the labour secretary along with commerce and foreign secretaries are due to meet with diplomats from the US, the EU, the Netherlands, the UK and Germany on February 13 to brief on progress made in labour rights in the country under the Sustainability Compact signed last year.



Turkish Unionists: ‘We Are Not Terrorists’

I was in Istanbul last week to observe the court hearing for 29 Turkish public sector unionists charged with membership in, propaganda for, and leadership of an illegal terrorist organization. After nearly a year in prison, the hearing was an opportunity to finally have their say. – See more at: http://www.labornotes.org/blogs/2014/02/turkish-unionists-we-are-not-terrorists#sthash.mD2i64r3.dpuf



Diary (see & use false economy)


18 Swansea Trades Council lobby of Swansea Council against £26million cuts budget – Guildhall, 4:30pm https://www.facebook.com/events/620762581323256/


24 Lobby Greater Manchester West Mental Health Trust – from 9am, Trust HQ, Prestwich Hospital, Bury New Rd, Prestwich M25 3BL


25: 4th Rail Package – Demonstration in Strasbourg

RMT is joining forces with the ETF, along with the TSSA and ASLEF to protest outside the European Parliament in the French city of Strasbourg against dangerous EU rules demanding ‘open access’ for private rail companies. http://www.rmt.org.uk/news/events/2014/02/25/


27 Stop the Bloodbath Budget 3.30 – 6.30pm Cardiff City Hall





1 Miners’ Strike Commemoration will be held in Wakefield at the Red Shed, 18 Vicarage Street, Wakefield WF1 1QX. The Commemoration is to be held by the Wakefield Socialist History Group and takes place 30 years to the day since the NCB announced the closure of Cortonwood and the year-long dispute began.

Speakers include Granville Williams (from Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign), Ken Rowley (who was a NUM official at Selby during the strike and who served on the National Executive Committee of the NUM), Ken Capstick (previously Vice President of the NUM), Sally Kincaid (Divisional Secretary of Wakefield National Union of Teachers) and Christopher Emms (Chair, UNITE, Leeds Community Branch).

There will be sketches from the Red Shed Players, live music, a choir (“Free Range”).  A free light buffet will be provided

29 Uniform Day


2 Visteon/Ford pensioners 5th anniversary march – 10.45 Assemble outside Unite House, Theobalds Road, Holborn, 11.00 Speeches, 11.30 March to Parliament Square, 12.30 Speeches and meet MP’s


5 8th Annual NSSN Conference – Conway Hall – 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL



PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]


TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts


ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, LondonE10 9DE