This week’s NSSN bulletin comes out just days before one of the most crucial general elections for generations.
The National Shop Stewards Network is primarily a rank and file network for trade unionists and anti-cuts campaigners and we are not affiliated to any political party. But in this election, there is a clear choice.
Jeremy Corbyn is standing on a programme that if elected to be Prime Minister, would be a massive blow against 7 years of Tory austerity and attacks on jobs and living standards. It is estimated that on average workers’ incomes could be lower in 2021 than before the Credit Crunch in 2007!
His ‘Workers Charter’ commits Labour to policies against precarious and casualised working and cuts in living standards such as banning zero hours contracts, raising the minimum wage to £10 and ending the public sector pay cap.
It also looks to protect and extend trade union and workers’ rights by repealing the Trade Union Act and rolling out sectoral collective bargaining alongside abolishing employment tribunal fees and holding a public inquiry into blacklisting.
This Charter, stands with policies to abolish tuition fees, bring the railways and Royal Mail back into public ownership and extend it again into the water and energy sectors and stopping the NHS and Schools cuts that the Tories aim to roll out.
It’s clear to us – a Jeremy Corbyn led Labour Government on June 9th would be a huge gain for working people and their families
The NSSN supports Jeremy Corbyn’s ‘Workers Charter’ – We have produced a bulletin which we encourage our supporters to take into their workplaces. Email us on [email protected] to get some
Watch NSSN video on Jeremy’s ‘Workers Charter’
The 11th annual NSSN Conference will be on Saturday July 1st 2017 from 11am in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL. It is open to all trade union and anti-cuts campaigners Facebook event. Speakers include: Len McCluskey Unite General Secretary (invited), Ronnie Draper BFAWU General Secretary, Steve Gillan POA General Secretary, Chris Baugh PCS Assistant General Secretary, Sean Hoyle RMT President, Linda Taaffe NSSN National Secretary, Rob Williams NSSN National Chair, Xaquín García Sinde Ganemos CCOO in Spain and Stephen Nugent from the Bus Eireann Irish strike. Attendance fee is £6 each. Register in advance by emailing [email protected] or on the day.
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. Affiliation letter is below
Download the ‘Join the NSSN’ leaflet here
And if you can, come to one of our regional Conferences. If there is not one in your area, get in touch to either assist in organising or have a speaker at one of your meetings or events. Contact Rob or Linda on [email protected]
Support BECTU reps suspended before last weekend’s Picturehouse Cinema strikes – BECTU Members were on strike again last weekend at Central (Piccadilly), Crouch End, Hackney and Ritzy but six union officials at the Ritzy in Brixton and one at Hackney Picturehouse have been suspended, a move that the union BECTU has called “appalling” read more in Guardian
Picturehouse Staff BECTU members have been asking for the London Living Wage, recognition of our chosen trade union, adequate sick pay and maternity and paternity pay. Company management continue to refuse negotiations on these issues, despite an approach from the Acas conciliation service. Instead Picturehouse and owners Cineworld have focused their attention on employing expensive lawyers to threaten both us and our union. Cineworld made £93 million profit in 2016, while the CEO’s total pay package was worth over £2.5 million. They can afford to pay their staff properly. Because of the company’s refusal to even meet with us to discuss these matters we have been left with no option but to withdraw our labour. Six cinemas have now voted to strike for these demands. The movement is growing but the company is determined to keep cinemas open during strikes. Keep supporting the Picturehouse workers: read the latest on Brixton Ritzy Facebook Page and those of Hackney, Crouch End, Central, Duke of York Brighton and Dulwich East Support the Picturehouse Strike Fund – donate now
NSSN sends our sympathy and solidarity to all those affected by the attack in London on Saturday night. We salute the incredible selfless efforts of emergency and transport workers and the many ordinary people who offered food, shelter and transport. We support the call by many unions for unity rather than division in communities and workplaces
NUJ sends best wishes to Geoff Ho, injured during the weekend’s terrorist attack (5 June) – The National Union of Journalists has sent best wishes to Sunday Express business editor Geoff Ho who was seriously injured during Saturday’s attack at London Bridge. Geoff Ho, a member of the Express chapel of the NUJ, was stabbed in the throat after he intervened in a bid to protect a member of the security staff in the doorway of the Southwark Tavern, in Southwark Street during the knife attack read more
DWP Sheffield Eastern Avenue: Striking to defend our public services (2 Jun) – PCS members at the DWP Sheffield Eastern Avenue jobcentre have taken strike action today over the proposed closure of the office which provides vital services to the community. In January, the government announced plans to close 78 of 714 jobcentres in England, Scotland and Wales, with work and staff transferring to the nearest office. The plans also included the closure of one fifth of the DWP’s 150 non-frontline offices, including benefit processing sites and call centres. The Eastern Avenue jobcentre in Sheffield was amongst those targeted for closure and since then a campaign has been launched to save it. Today members took a day’s strike action and will take another five days starting on Monday 12 June read more
Ken Loach sends support to EHRC strikers, this week in Manchester (5 Jun) – PCS members in Manchester starting a week-long strike over budget cuts, redundancies and sackings at the Equality and Human Rights Commission were given resounding support by renowned film director Ken Loach. The maker of films including I, Daniel Blake, Cathy Come Home and Raining Stones, sent an email to the strikers at the equality watchdog to give them his message of solidarity as they began their action, the fourth week in a rolling programme of walkouts that began in Glasgow on 15 May and will continues in Manchester this week (5–9 June) read more. How you can help:-
Attend a picket line in Manchester this week
Tweet to @savetheehrc and use #reinstatethe8 and #sackedbyemail
Send a message of support to [email protected]
Make a donation to our Fighting Fund which is used to support our members who take strike action and come to the fundraising social from 7pm on Friday 16 June at the Bread & Roses pub 68 Clapham Manor St, Clapham, London SW4 6DZ
RMT calls for urgent security summit as union warns that rail staff cuts and introduction of driver only trains increase terror risks (2 June) – The UK’s largest rail union, RMT, has today called for an urgent security summit as it warns that rail staff cuts and the introduction of driver only trains will increase the terror risks faced by passengers. The warning came as the union revealed that train guards were being issued with instructions from rail bosses advising that read more
Defend the London Bridge Three – In light of the deplorable treatment of our three members including Brother Cornell’s dismissal after 10 years’ service via an utter miscarriage of justice, your union has taken the decision to escalate this dispute and ballot ALL Stations Grades and Revenue Control Inspector members for strike action and industrial action short of a strike. Vote Yes X For Strike Action & Actions Short of a Strike. The ballot papers closing date is Tuesday 13th June 2017. *Please ensure you vote as the new Anti-Trade Union Laws brought in by the government this March 2017 WILL MEAN THE BALLOT MAY FAIL IF YOU DON’T!!! read more
RMT steps up fight over ticket office closures across Greater Anglia Franchise (31 March) – Rail union RMT confirmed today that it is to step up a campaign to fight a planned programme of ticket offices closures the length and breadth of the Greater Anglia franchise and has given the company a deadline of Monday 19th June to confirm that all ticket office jobs and windows will be kept open for the length of the current franchise or the union will declare a formal dispute over the issue. RMT is also seeking further confirmations from Greater Anglia over the retention of the current two-person train despatch procedures and the safety competencies of platform staff read more
Support Sierra Windows strike – NSSN supporters visited the picket lines at Sierra Glass in Paignton again on May 31st. Workers are on strike again tomorrow June 7th and Wednesday and there will be further 48 hours strikes scheduled for 15, 22 and 29 June and then 5, 12, 19 and 26 July “Workers were particularly pleased we had highlighted that there had been no pay raise for them since 2008 as this is not being mentioned elsewhere. To reinforce the point I was introduced to a striker who had been on the job for 30 years and was still on the minimum wage. The mood on the line is still good, especially as workers at a sister company, DB Glass, in nearby Newton Abbot are now also joining the strike. We believe it is essential that direct links are made by the strikers at both plants and have offered to help. Both Sierra and DB Windows are out of the EPWIN Group which is a big employer with its headquarters and main works in Telford. It also has a permanent stall at The Building Centre 26 Store St, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 7BT. Strikers have asked if we can raise the profile of the dispute by leafletting EPWINS workforce and customers around the country
Hospitality bosses told to ‘smell the coffee’ on low pay by Unite (5 June) – Bosses in the hospitality and tourism industry will be told to ‘wake up and smell the coffee’ in relation to the low pay and exploitative practices in their sectors. Low paid hospitality workers, members of Britain’s biggest, Unite, will take their message direct to key industry leaders attending Tuesday’s British Hospitality Association’s (BHA) annual hospitality and tourism summit at the Grand Connaught rooms in London read more
British Airways’ punishment policy prompts cabin crew to call more strikes (2 June) – Cabin crew working for British Airways at Heathrow have today (Friday June 2) announced that they will take further stoppage action this month as frustrations mount over the airline’s determination to punish previous strikers. The mixed fleet crew, members of Unite the union, have said they will strike from 00.01 hours on Friday 16 June until 23:59 hours on Monday 19 June in their continuing effort to secure a pay rise for the low paid workforce read more
Unite begins strike ballot for Bank of England staff in pay dispute (1 June) – staff at the Bank of England will from today start voting in an industrial action ballot as Unite, the union representing staff at the bank calls on their employer to give them a decent pay deal read more
Joint campaign secures protections for school workers (5 June) – joint campaign by education unions has secured “important protections” for staff at a 33-school multi academy trust which planned to cut nearly £1m from school budgets, meaning that up to 40 staff faced losing their jobs
Watch film made by Glasgow Unison branch celebrating this week’s equal pay victory in Glasgow, not every argument has been won, an important step forward in achieving pay equality in Glasgow read more
Support the Kinsley School cleaners in Wakefield on indefinite strike since September 6th – Facebook Group. Donate to strike fund – send to Wakefield Unison, 18 Gills Yard, Wakefield WF1 3BZ
Reinstate Kumaran Bose – sacked by Samworths! The NSSN is supporting the BFAWU’s campaign in support of Kumaran Bose who was dismissed for speaking out and for organising a union in his workplace read more Facebook group BFAWU Statement On Samworth Brothers’ Sacking Of Kumaran Bose
Manchester Metropolitan University staff to strike over jobs row – UCU has announced today that its members at Manchester Metropolitan University on both the Manchester and Crewe campuses will walk out on strike for two days on Tuesday 20 and Wednesday 21 June read more
Sign petition: reinstate Indro Sen immediately – Indro Sen, a maths lecturer and trade union branch officer at the College of North West London (CNWL) has been dismissed for actions in assisting a former colleague at an employment tribunal case. He was voted by students as the most popular teacher, 2014-15. We demand that the College Governors and Senior Management Team reinstate Sen immediately sign here
Support the reinstatement of London Met union reps: Mark Campbell and David Hardman https://uculondonmet.wordpress.com/
Support the NUT London school strikes against cuts at Forest Hill Forest Hill in Lewisham and Plumstead Manor in Greenwich – Watch video of march & rally for Forest Hill School in Lewisham on April 22
Essex firefighters set the record straight (2 June) – On Friday, the Basildon Echo’s front page led with the story ‘Corbyn in town for the many not the few…. but he is not talking to the local press or any ‘real’ Basildon people as he leaves venue by backdoor’. Local firefighters who attended the event say that this is manifestly untrue. During his visit Jeremy Corbyn met with 12 Essex firefighters, the majority of whom serve at Basildon fire station in the centre of town. Following the speech at Pitsea leisure centre Jeremy Corbyn invited the firefighters to meet with him so he could discuss their concerns and highlight Labour’s manifesto commitment to secure the future of the fire service nationally read more
GMB Slams BA Over Outsourcing IT Jobs (June 1) – Disastrous computer failure could have been avoided, says union. GMB, the union for aviation workers, has slammed British Airways (BA) over a disastrous computer failure that has led the company to cancel all flights. BA’s disastrous computer systems failure is another example of the shortcomings of BA IT systems since they made a number of staff redundant, and outsourced their work to India in 2016, the union warned read more
NUJ joins boycott of Project Diamond (2 June) – The National Union of Journalists has confirmed that the union will boycott the broadcasters’ Project Diamond diversity initiative if they persist in shrouding key statistics on workplace participation in a veil of secrecy. The union is joining sister unions Bectu and the Writers’ Guild of Great Britain following consultation with the union’s Black Members’ Council, Equality Council, Disabled Members’ Council and 60+ Council read more
United Voices of the World union
The cleaners at the LSE, all of whom are migrants and BAME workers, have been back out on strike since 1st June. All they are asking for is dignity and equality and despite waiting 8 months the LSE has still refused to concede either. Instead, they have offered derisory concessions, the latest amounting to:
-less than half the sick pay allowance of in-house staff;
-less than 2 weeks annual leave than in-house staff;
-less than 20% of maternity pay of in-hosue staff.
-no offer on pensions.
Despite the LSE’s lies, spin and disrespect the cleaners have remained more than patient and have repeatedly tried to amicably settle this dispute. However, they are clear that they will not be strung along with empty gestures from the LSE’s highly-paid managers and directors. Therefore these strikes will continue until victory Please consider making a donation to LSE cleaners’ strike fund – http://www.uvwunion.org.uk/justiceforlsecleaners/
Cleaners and Allied Independent Workers Union – CAIWU
HSBC cleaners to strike from 8am, Canada Square on June 6th – there will also be a public demonstration on the same day. See more on the CAIWU Facebook page www.facebook.com/caiwuunion
Postroom staff join Cordant dispute! (June 2) – Now the Postroom staff have joined the dispute against Cordant, calling for the company to honour promises to maintain pay differentials. On behalf of the affected staff, IWGB has given Cordant a deadline of Tuesday 6 June to respond positively and open negotiations read more
Support the Irish anti-water charge protestors who are facing trial for a protest in Jobstown
Please send messages of protest: https://sites.google.com/view/jobstownnotguilty/ https://www.facebook.com/Jobstown-Not-Guilty-1056889327677242/
SERTUC Public Service Committee welcomes Dr Peter Latham Book Signing: WHO STOLE THE TOWN HALL? – Tuesday 13 June 2017 – 1.30pm TUC Congress House, 23-28 Great Russell Street, London. Free admission details
Action Mesothelioma Day Friday 7th July – London event:-
Blacklisting & Victimisation
Buy the book ‘Blacklisted: The Secret War between Big Business and Union Activists’ Author: Dave Smith and Phil Chamberlain. Blacklisted tells the controversial story of the illegal strategies that transnational construction companies used to keep union activists away from work.
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)
Blacklist Support Group – Vote for a public inquiry into blacklisting and workers’ rights
- The Labour Manifesto pledges to hold a full public inquiry into blacklisting whereas Theresa May has repeatedly refused to set up a public inquiry when she was Home Secretary. The polls indicate that the General Election is now a 2 horse race between Labour and the Tories, therefore the Blacklist Support Group is encouraging its supporters to vote for a public inquiry on June 9th and where possible to volunteer in the campaign.
BSG set up a video shoot with other rank & file union activists outside parliament and the Conservative Party HQ last week.
This is the outcome:
Share this video to support the campaign. The pop-up gig by Steve White & The protest family on the steps on Tory Party Central office has also started a Guerrilla Gig Challenge amongst musicians – if you know any band that has performed a political slot in the street or outside a hustings, post a video on social media using the hashtag #GE2017GuerrillaGigChallenge
While at the gig outside Tory Party Central Office, the Reel News photographer Guy Smallman managed to take photos of Steve Back leaving the Tory HQ, the photojournalist whose pictures have been used to smear Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell. See here: https://www.facebook.com/ReelNews/posts/10155375652174605?pnref=story
- Our giant Corbyn banner has become a ‘thing’ in the campaign – after it appeared on the Kop and at Goodison, working class voters are flocking to be associated with the campaigns on it – Blacklisting – Hillsborough – Orgeave – Shrewsbury (plus Corbyn & McDonnell). Videos & photos are appearing all over social media The iconic image is now available as a t-shirt with all proceeds going to food banks across Merseyside – great work by Roy Bentham who have been on Radio Merseyside and the Liverpool Echo.
Associated media coverage:
- The fascist English Defence League were chased out of Liverpool at the weekend by over 1000 scousers and the Blacklist Support Group banner was proud to be in the middle of it.
- Shrewsbury Pickets Protest – 12 noon Wed 7th June
Criminal cases Review Commission
5 St Philip’s Place
This is because of the CCRC reluctance to give a decision on whether of the not the case of the Shrewsbury Pickets is to go to the court of appeal. Campaigners have been told time and time again that a decision is imminent. The case of the Shrewsbury Pickets is 45 yrs old. There can be no place in our society for miscarriages of justice to go unchallenged.
New judge to take over at the undercover police inquiry due to the ill-health of Lord Justice Pitchford.
Scottish police were seconded to work in the disgraced NPOIU undercover policing unit – little wonder campaigners complain about the police investigating themselves again – Full public inquiry needed in Scotland.
- Solidarity videos form the heroic Reel News
LSE cleaners – fighting for equal rights: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0VJ2RXYLK2c
NHS protests: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCbHEd2O6bQ
‘Liar Liar’ by Captain Ska – the song banned by the BBC has become the soundtrack to the general election and is number 4 in the charts – enjoy:
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Donate to ReelNews – http://reelnews.co.uk/donationssubscriptions/
Workers at Asahi Australia need permanent jobs, not casual work read more
24 Tamil Solidarity: Solidarity Day 10.30am – 17.30pm. At Unite the Union, 128 Theobalds Rd, Holborn, London WC1X 8TN http://www.tamilsolidarity.org/solidarity-day-2/
1 11th annual NSSN Conference 11am in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL
8 Durham Miners Gala www.durhamminers.org
14-17 Tolpuddle Martyrs Festival www.tolpuddlemartyrs.org.uk/festival
10 NSSN rally at TUC Congress
PHONE 07952 283 558
EMAIL mailto:[email protected]
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE