368: Leicester NHS campaigners save children’s heart unit!


The NSSN welcomes the victory of the Leicester Glenfield campaign, in which our supporters have played a key role:-

‘One of the main campaign organisers Steve Score said, “Celebrations were taking place in Leicester city centre on the 30th November following an outstanding victory for the campaign to save congenital heart surgery at Glenfield Hospital. A mood of relief and of jubilation spread from campaigners to people across the region.

Glenfield demo February 2017
Glenfield demo February 2017

We hope this victory encourages campaigners across the country who are fighting to save the NHS.

Congenital heart surgery at The Royal Brompton and Harefield trust in London, which had its own campaign, has also been saved.

Glenfield’s closure would have left the East Midlands as the only region in England without such a highly specialised centre. Campaigners warned that the result would be devastating for families whose children’s lives are saved by Glenfield.

This affected me personally as my son had open heart surgery there two years ago. The campaign has involved thousands in a large number of demonstrations and meetings, the biggest march having over 2,000 on it. 130,000 people signed a petition. We helped 7,500 people to engage in a very tricky and complex ‘consultation’. This is all despite the difficulty of congenital heart patients being a small minority in a very widespread population.”

The staff have stood firm and worked hard to build the case for keeping the centre. We have had support from a wide range of people including trade unionists, health campaigners and local people generally. Above all it shows that if we unite and fight, we can overturn unjust attacks on our services and jobs.”’




Charlton Park Academy victory – Greenwich NEU (NUT): “After months of action including 6 days of strikes Charlton Park Academy GMB and NEU have gained a well-deserved victory. Burgundy and Green book conditions have been won for all staff beginning on 1 December”


Blacklisting Day of Action – Wednesday 6th December

Unite to lobby Parliament as part of blacklisting day of action

Protests are planned across the UK plus a lobby of MPs at Westminster.

LFC Carillion

Blacklist Support Group urge all our supporters to publicize the events and where possible to attend. Bring your banners and wear your ‘Blacklisted’ t-shirts with pride.

Blacklist Demo and lobby of Parliament – 12pm Wednesday December 6th Old Palace Yard Westminster SW1P 3JY Facebook event with speakers from Unite including Gail Cartmail, assistant general secretary

1pm – Photo call with MPs

2pm – Meeting with MPs in the Boothroyd room – please note, this is in Portcullis House not the Palace of Westminster

4pm finish & pre-Xmas drinks

  • Full public inquiry into blacklisting
  • Make blacklisting a criminal offence
  • No public contracts for companies involved in blacklisting

More info for other events around the country:


9:30 – Meet at Unite Edinburgh Office

10:00 – Protest at St James Centre

12:00 – Lobby the Scottish Parliament


08:00 – 10:00 City Square, Leeds, LS1 2, United Kingdom


10am – Balfour Beatty, Sussex University, Brighton, BN1 9RH


12.00 – McAlpine site Exchange Square, Urban Village Site, Gate 4, Dale End, B4 7LN


17:00 – McAlpine site, Durham city centre (Milburngate shopping centre).

Unite to bring leading blacklisters to court (4 Dec) – Unite, the UK’s construction union, has issued high court proceedings to bring the ‘controlling minds’ behind the systematic blacklisting of workers to justice and force them to give evidence in court for the first time. The high court case for unlawful conspiracy is against David Cochrane, Cullum McAlpine, Danny O’Sullivan and Stephen Quant. All four of whom undertook the role of chairman of the Consulting Association. Mr McAlpine and Mr Cochrane were the first and last chairmen of the Consulting Association both of whom were employed by Sir Robert McAlpine Ltd. Mr O’Sullivan was employed by Kier Ltd and Mr Quant was an employee of Skanska UK PLC. The action against the four leading blacklisters is part of a wider case being brought by Unite on behalf of over 70 construction workers who were blacklisted by the Consulting Association. These cases are for breach of privacy, defamation and for Data Protection Act offences read more

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

Book http://newint.org/books/politics/blacklisted-secret-war/

Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JlCa8yQmZ70

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/groups/blacklistSG/

Donate to ReelNews – http://reelnews.co.uk/donationssubscriptions/



NSSN news

Advanced notice: the 2018 National Shop Stewards Network Annual Conference will be from 11am-4.30pm on Saturday June 30th in Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, Holborn, London. It is open to all trade union and anti-cuts campaigners

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]

You can receive this bulletin via email. Click here to subscribe 

Follow us on twitter via @NSSN_AntiCuts and Facebook


Union News

More Unite

Hackney schools face ‘dirty loos’ in cleaners’ holiday pay row (5 Dec) – The ‘outrageous’ failure to pay proper holiday rates has prompted a strike ballot by 42 school cleaners in Hackney that could leave six schools in the borough dirty and  with rubbish piling up in the new year. The cleaners, members of Unite, the country’s largest union, are currently being balloted for strike action, following the refusal of their employer OCS Group Ltd to pay holiday pay in line with its legal obligations, which state that holiday pay should reflect normal remuneration. The cleaners are also angry over OCS’ failure to discuss the five per cent pay claim for April 2018 and the imposition of term-time only contracts. The ballot closes on Monday 18 December read more

New Forest workers face losing their homes in rent row, says Unite (4 Dec) – Workers in the New Forest face the prospect of losing their homes if the Forestry Commission goes ahead with ‘draconian’ rent rises of 80 per cent over the next two years. About 25 workers, who earn about £21,000-a-year, will be hit if the commission increases the rents by 40 per cent in January 2018 and by the same amount in January 2019. Unite which represents a number of the workers, is due to have another meeting with the Forestry Commission surveyors on Friday (8 December) to put forward the case for ‘a sensible and compassionate approach’ to rent rises read more

Medway hospital operations face cancellation, if theatre staff vote to strike over recruitment crisis (29 Nov) – The crisis in theatre staffing at the Medway Maritime Hospital in Gillingham could lead to cancelled and delayed operations in the new year, should theatre staff vote for industrial action. Theatre staff have been warning the bosses at the Medway NHS Foundation Trust for more than a year about the threat to patient safety, as the Kent hospital faces a ‘recruitment and retention’ crisis in the operating theatres. Unite is balloting its 74 anaesthetic practitioner, staff nurse, obstetric and theatre recovery members for strike action and industrial action short of a strike. The ballot opens on 4 December and closes on 21 December read more

Support North West bus strikes at First Manchester and Arriva North West Send messages of support and donations via Neil Clarke, [email protected] c/o Unite, Jack Jones House, 2 Churchill Way, Liverpool  L3 8EF

Support Manchester Mears housing workers – on 49 days of strike action: Send messages of support to Unite rep Colin Pitt: [email protected] and Unite regional officer [email protected] and post donations to: Unite House, Merchants Quay, Salford Quays, Salford M50 3SG



Latest CWU bulletin on Royal Mail dispute

CWU RM logo

BT Pension Review – Reject all the Proposals



Driving examiners out in force on first day of strike (4 Dec) – Driving tests across the country were cancelled as PCS members working for DVSA walked out today (4 December). The two-day strike follows action short of strike since 23 November, where members only worked their contracted hours and to the exact wording of their employment contracts.  The dispute is over an increase to working hours and safety concerns about the new driving test, introduced today read more

PCS Assistant General Secretary Chris Baugh on Morden picket line
PCS Assistant General Secretary Chris Baugh on Morden picket line

Show your support:-

Tweet your support using #DVSAdispute

Download and use our photo opp card and email your solidarity photos to [email protected] and share them on social media

Add a ‘DVSA stop your attacks’ frame to your Facebook profile

Donate to our fighting fund to support members taking industrial action

Support DWP strikes:

  • Send messages of support to [email protected]
  • Send donations to the strike fund to PCS DWP Group, 3rd Floor, Town Centre House, Merrion Centre, Leeds, LS2 8LY

HMRC announces security privatisation plans (1 Dec) – HMRC has announced that it will seek a ‘specialist supplier’ to provide security, as it moves to a mixture of regional centres, specialist and transitional sites under the controversial Building our Future programme. PCS has argued that the security work should be covered by the tried and tested in-house workforce, which is ideally placed to continue to provide a secure and effective service. Instead HMRC seems intent on using a supplier that is likely to put its profit margin ahead of the safety and security of our members and the public read more



RMT ballot opens this week on Virgin East Coast over attempt to impose two-tier workforce as Government plan multi-million pound company bail-out (5 Dec) – RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that balloting of members for both strike action and action short of a strike on Virgin East Coast will begin this week after the company decided to impose a pay offer that had previously been rejected by the workforce. The news of the ballot comes just a week after it emerged that Virgin East Coast are being lined up for a massive taxpayer bail-out running to hundreds of millions of pounds on a franchise that has been riddled with problems since the public sector operation was scrapped and Virgin/Stagecoach were handed the keys. The offer sought to impose inferior conditions under further productivity and efficiency savings and unilateral changes to working conditions including sick pay arrangements, despite an ongoing reorganisation that has already given the business many savings for this and future years read more

RMT members striking today at Surrey bus company for basic workplace rights (4 Dec) – RMT members are standing solid and united on the picket line today at a Surrey-based bus company‎ in a dispute over the basic workplace right to be represented by the union of their choice read more

RMT announces strike action on Virgin West Coast in fight over pay justice (29 Nov) – RAIL UNION RMT announced today that members on Virgin West Coast services will be taking strike action in a dispute over pay justice. At the heart of the dispute is the RMT demand for a suitable equal offer for its Virgin West Coast members to that received by drivers read more

RMT pledges to fight break up and privatisation of Network Rail under Grayling “Rail Plan” (29 Nov) – General Secretary Mick Cash said “The government’s answer to the fragmented, privatised chaos on rail services is another dose of fragmentation and privatisation, this time targeting Network Rail and the tracks and infrastructure the trains run on read more

Support the 48-hour RMT strike this weekend by train managers and senior conductors on Arriva Cross Country in a dispute over abuse of rostering and Sunday working read more

National dispute fund (DOO disputes) – If you would like to donate to the RMT National Dispute Fund which makes payments to support their striking members taking part in National DOO disputes then you can donate via PayPal using the donate button below or make a cheque payable to RMT National Dispute Fund and send it to the address below. Alternatively, you can ring their Freephone helpline on 0800 376 3706 who will be happy to process a credit card payment for you, or, if you would like to pay via internet banking, please email [email protected] for further details. Vicky Thompson, Finance Manager RMT, 39 Chalton Street, London NW1 1JD. Tel: 020-7529-8843

RMT to ballot for action on Crossrail project (22 Nov) – RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that it is to begin the process of balloting a group of staff for industrial action on the Crossrail project. RMT Works Train Controller members (engineering staff) working for VGC and based at Plumstead Depot on the Crossrail Project recently submitted a collective grievance and held discussions with VGC management regarding their rate of pay, which they have learned is approximately half that of other grades. Despite this grievance, the rate of pay has not been uplifted to a level which represents the role and is in line with our members’ colleagues read more

Strike action goes ahead on Arriva Cross Country –

  • 00.01 hours on Saturday 9th December 2017 and 23.59 hours on Sunday 10th December 2017
  • 00.01 hours and 23.59 hours on Sunday 24th December 2017
  • 00.01 hours and 23.59 hours on Sunday 31st December 2017 read more



TSSA announce strike action dates for Virgin Trains West Coast (1 Dec) – TSSA members in Virgin West Coast, TSSA have announced six 24 hour strike dates in December and January, starting on Friday 15 December. We have also informed the company we reserve the right to take further days if necessary. The action will be taken by members of ticket office, platform and supervisory staff along the West Coast Mainline from Glasgow to Euston. It follows a ballot of members who voted overwhelmingly for strike action in a dispute about disparity of wage rises read more



POA Rally and Lobby of Parliament – 2.30pm Tuesday 5th December POA website

NSSN supporting POA December 5th lobby of Parliament
NSSN supporting POA December 5th lobby of Parliament



Thousands of GMB Sellafield and ancillary staff walk out in two separate disputes (28 Nov) – All our members want is a pay offer which at least keeps up with inflation – so they can afford to put food on their families’ tables as inflation and the cost of living go up and up. GMB, the union for nuclear workers, has said thousands of Sellafield staff and ancillary staff employed by Mitie will walk out today in two separate strikes. 3,000 members directly employed by Sellafield Ltd will walk out again for 24 hours from 6.01am on Wednesday, November 29 until 5.59am on Thursday, November 30 read more



Overhaul of university pensions could leave staff £200,000 worse off in retirement (30 Nov) – Staff in some of the UK’s most elite universities will see the value of their retirement income drop by as much as £200,000 if hardline proposals from universities are brought in.   Analysis by independent experts First Actuarial [1Mb] shows that a lecturer starting work today could be £208,000 worse off over the course of their retirement under the new proposals for the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS)…The revelations about how much staff can expect to lose come UCU members start to receive ballot papers asking them to back a sustained campaign of strikes and other forms of industrial action. The union has warned of “chaos on campuses” in the New Year if the dispute cannot be resolved. The postal ballot opened on Wednesday and will close on Friday 19 January read more


University of Bath vice-chancellor to leave post (29 Nov) – Commenting on the resignation of Dame Glynis Breakwell, the University and College Union (UCU) said her position had become untenable and the announcement had to herald a marked change in the transparency of senior pay in universities. UCU general secretary Sally Hunt said: ‘The vice-chancellor’s position had become untenable. This whole episode has shone an important light on the murky world of senior pay in our universities and it would be wrong to think a change at the top of one institution solves that problem read more


Support UCU Strike Brighton University action – Members of the UCU at the University of Brighton walked out on strike in November in a dispute about compulsory redundancies. They began a work-to-contract last Monday. Further strike action is planned for this month. The action follows a ballot which returned majorities in favour of action of more than 85%.

If you can head down to any of the Uni sites from 8pm on Friday to show support on the picket lines please do.

Please send messages of support to [email protected]



Job cuts and fire engine downgrades putting lives at risk, warns firefighters’ union (28 Nov) – Lives will be put at risk if proposals to axe firefighter posts and downgrade fire engines are given the go-ahead across Cheshire, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has said read more



The workers of 5 London Picturehouse cinemas are going on strike 4pm-7pm on Thursday 14th December, the opening of Star Wars. All the workers will be demonstrating outside Hackney Picturehouse, come support us please! Bring your banners, placards, music and most importantly…support! Workers in Picturehouse cinemas have been on strike for over a year for a living wage, Sick pay, Maternity pay and Union recognition!

Donate to the Picturehouse Cinema strike fund: https://www.crowdpac.co.uk/campaigns/250/picturehousestrike

Keep supporting the Picturehouse workers: read the latest on Brixton Ritzy Facebook Page and those of Hackney, Crouch End, Central, Dulwich East and Duke of York Brighton



Newsquest Christmas cuts & redundancy as boss pockets £1m-plus (1 Dec) – Newsquest’s chief executive Henry Faure Walker’s pay and perks have passed the £1m mark, but scores of journalists face being made redundant just in time for Christmas. Others have been told their meagre overtime and anti-social hours’ payments will be pared down read more



McDonald’s set for more strikes as action spreads across Britain – Concerns over low wages, zero-hours contracts and mishandling of sexual assault claims are at root of unrest. Strike action at McDonald’s is to spread to outlets across the country in the coming months, following the lead of workers at two restaurants in the south of England. Dossiers on claims made by staff, ranging from the company’s alleged failure to provide protective equipment for workers using grills to allegations about management mishandling sexual assault claims, are being compiled by trade unionists. The September strikes were the first at McDonald’s since it opened in the UK in the 1970s read more from the Observer. Keep sending solidarity to the BFAWU, donate to the strike fund and also help the fund by buying a #McStrike t-shirt. More info on the Fast Food Rights/Hungry for Justice website

The Dark Depths of Amazon’s Warehouses: How the Baker’s Union are Organising the Fightback read more



Fair pay now Protest Day 8 December 2017 – Fair pay now for council and school workers! The local government employers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland are meeting on 13 December to decide how much they will offer in response to National Joint Council unions’ pay claim. UNISON is asking all branches, activists and members covered by the claim to build up local pressure beforehand, and make some noise to support the claim before the employers meet. The union is asking branches and workplaces to organise a day of protest on Friday 8 December for Fair Pay Now in local government and schools –  every branch can use the day to highlight the dire state of NJC pay read more

Support the Royal Devon and Exeter porters by donating to their hardship fund. Send a cheque to the branch at: UNISON Office, Baker House
, Royal Devon & Exeter NHS Trust, Barrack Road, Exeter EX2 5DW. Or make a direct donation to the branch account

Account Name: UNISON Royal Devon and Exeter Health 10296 Branch

Account Number: 20323929 Sort Code: 60-83-01


United Voices of the World union

Cleaners set to strike for a living wage, dignity and equality at the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) (1 Dec) – The brave and inspiring cleaners – members of UVW and all of whom are migrants – who work at the MoJ’s headquarters at 102 Petty France in Westminster – are set to be balloted to strike if their demands for a living wage, and equality of sick pay and annual leave allowance with civil servants are not met. If the strike goes ahead it will mark the first strike of any group of workers at the MoJ and will also mark another dispute for higher wages and better terms and conditions led by migrant workers read more on UVW Facebook page   www.uvwunion.org.uk



Other news

Attila the Stockbroker: Fundraiser for Doncaster Women’s Aid – 7pm Sunday December 10th, Masons Arms, 22 Market Place, DN1 1ND Doncaster Facebook event

Workload Survey – but I haven’t go time! – Could I get 5 minutes of your precious time to input into this workload survey? I’m trying find out the scale and impact of the increasing workload in the housing sector, and what solutions we can develop or amplify in Unite. Though am interested and learning about safe staffing levels and challenges to workload across many sectors. Whilst workers do more, bosses profits/surpluses are up and our collective H&S plummets to extreme levels.  Recently German unions proposed a 28 hour week…!

So far over 70% who have inputted have said that workload is has increased, impacting on health, capabilities and service standards.

Nationally companies take £33billion pounds off us across industry. Whilst large parts of the housing sector are seeing increased surpluses and disgusting pay for CEO’s as staffing decreases. Please hit the link below and add your voice. (If you’ve filled it in, thank you. Can I ask you to ask 2-3 fellow reps?)


And if you’ve done all that or want something to listen to whilst you input, try:

‘MORE TIME’  Linton Kwesi Johnson

Thank you and I’ll update with a short report of your ideas/suggestions before the end of the year. (The research survey has been set up by Unite, so I get the summary data).

Arti Dillon – Unite Housing Workers LE1111 P/T organiser ([email protected])

Doing this for my research project for the TUC Organising Academy diploma and more!


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.





Turkey: Sign the statement for Peace & Democracy, Solidarity with HDP! – Selahattin Demirtas and Figen Yuksekdag were arrested in November 2016 during a series of night time raids across Turkey where democratically elected MPs were taken from their homes in a pre-planned operation. Many of them have been held in prison for more than a year on trumped-up charges of terrorism as President Erdogan’s increasingly authoritarian rule shuts down democracy in the country. On December 6 and 7 democracy goes on trial in Turkey. Opposition politicians Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ will appear in court on unsubstantiated charges of terrorism, with prosecutors seeking lengthy jail sentences…We the undersigned condemn the imprisonment of democratically elected MP’s by the Turkish state. We demand an immediate end to the State of Emergency which has been used as a tool to attack many sections of society. Furthermore we send a message of solidarity to Figen Yüksekdağ and Selahattin Demirtaş and demand their immediate and unconditional release from prison. Sign here






30 National Shop Stewards Network 2018 Annual Conference 11am-4.30pm Conway Hall, Red Lion Square, Holborn, London



PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]


TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts


ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE