NSSN 387: IWMD, May Day #McStrike, Bromley victory & 2 years fighting DOO


This week’s bulletin falls just before two important dates in the calendar for trade unionists and workers – International Workers Memorial Day (IWMD) on Saturday April 28th and May Day International Workers Day on Tuesday May 1st. There will be events all round the country over the next week or so to mark both of these days. But there are also strikes and protests that bring out the meaning of both IWMD and May Day.

Tomorrow Wednesday April 25th, three days before IWMD, the RMT rail union will be marking two years of their struggle against Driver Only Operations, which has seen their members take strike action in five companies to keep the trains safe by maintaining guards on board.

We celebrate the fantastic victory of Unite members in Bromley libraries, who were outsourced by the Tory council. And next Tuesday on May Day itself, BFAWU bakers union members will be going on strike in McDonalds for the second time after their historic first walkout last September.

Please take part in the events, strikes and protests. Remember the dead and injured. Mark the struggles of the past. But also support the current fights and celebrate the victories!


Celebrate International Workers Memorial Day April 28th and May Day International Workers Day on and around May 1st. Click on the links for IWMD and May Day to find events in your area

IWMD London – There will be a rally with speeches commencing at 10:30am at the Building Worker Statue, Tower Hill, London, EC3. Organised by Unite construction sector with a speaker – all welcome. Straight after the event at Tower Hill (around 12:45pm) there will be a silent vigil at Grenfell Tower – outside Notting Hill Methodist Church, 240 Lancaster Road, W11 4AH

TUC demonstration ‘A new deal for working people’: Saturday May 12th – assemble 11am at Victoria Embankment between Hungerford Bridge and Blackfriars Bridge. For details, including transport to the demonstration – https://www.tuc.org.uk/events/new-deal-working-people-tuc-march-rally

TUC demo snip

Come to the ‘A new deal for working people’ TUC march and rally in London on Saturday May 12th. It is an opportunity to mobilise hundreds of thousands of trade unionists, their families, friends and service users who are angry at the attacks of the employers and their Tory Government.



McStrike: McDonald’s Workers call for McSolidarity on International Workers’ Day (18 Apr) – Striking McDonald’s workers are calling for McSolidarity on International Workers Day – May Day. Announcing the times and locations of their pickets, McDonald’s workers from five striking stores have called for the public to show McSolidarity in person and online to support the McStrike.


00:01 Midnight Picket – Manchester

07-08:00 Manchester Morning Picket.

12:-13:30 Watford Demonstration

Pickets will take place at the other stores striking Cambridge 8-9, Crayford, 8-9 read more

McStrike logo

Keep sending solidarity to the BFAWU, post cheques to BFAWU, Stanborough House, Great North Road, Welwyn Garden City, Herts AL8 7TA and donate to the strike fund. Also help the fund by buying a #McStrike t-shirt. More info on the Fast Food Rights/Hungry for Justice website



Bromley library workers win strike campaign (22 Apr) – Bromley library workers have won a huge victory. This follows all out, indefinite strike action which began on 28th March. A mass meeting on 18th April agreed to accept proposals recommended by union reps who attended negotiations with the employer the previous day. The campaign has won concessions from the employer on all the main items in dispute. This includes the immediate filling of 17 vacant posts, protection for pay and conditions that goes beyond the legal protection provided by ‘TUPE’ (workers were transferred out from the council to Greenwich Leisure Limited – GLL – in November 2017), a pay increase from this April, implementation of the London Living Wage and paid trade union facility time. This is a hugely significant trade union victory. GLL took over the service promising to make “efficiencies” – code for cuts. Inevitably, this was going to be in the area of staffing and they certainly wasted no time. GLL attempted to run libraries with significant numbers of posts kept deliberately vacant. This led to the service being stretched to the point of collapse and was the final straw leading to the walk out read more

Bromley library April 2018

Email congratulations to Bromley Unite branch secretary Kathy Smith [email protected]



National RMT protest over rail safety on Wednesday will mark second anniversary of Britain’s longest running industrial dispute (23 Apr) – RAIL UNION RMT will be holding a national protest against Driver Only Operation outside Parliament this Wednesday, 25th April, at 11.30 at Old Palace Yard, London, SW1P 3JY (Opposite the Palace of Westminster and in front of the George V statue). The rally coincides with the 2nd anniversary of the start of RMT strike action on Southern Rail -Britain’s longest running industrial dispute – against Driver Only Operation and in defence of keeping the guard on the train. Since the initial dispute began on Southern, RMT members on Northern, Merseyrail, Greater Anglia and South Western Railways have also taken strike action in opposition to the assault on jobs, safety, security and accessibility. After the protest a meeting will be held in Houses of Parliament with a number of guest speakers read more


RMT confirms further action on Greater Anglia in fight over rail safety and the role of the guard (18 Apr) – RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that members will strike for a further 24 hours on Saturday 5th May in a long running dispute over rail safety and the role of the guard 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



NSSN news

NSSN Conference moved to Saturday July 7th – support the June 30th NHS 70th anniversary events

The NSSN steering committee has decided to put our annual conference back a week to avoid a clash of dates with a national day of action to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the NHS on June 30th. We will do all we can to build these protests against continuing Tory health cuts.

The 2018 National Shop Stewards Network Annual Conference will be from 11am-4.30pm on Saturday July 7th in Conway Hall – 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL. The attendance fee is £6 and it is open to all trade union and anti-cuts campaigners. Affiliation letter and conference appeal letter is here


We also want to give advanced notice that once again we will be organising a rally at TUC Congress. This year it will be in Manchester on Sunday September 9th.

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

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]

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Follow us on twitter via @NSSN_AntiCuts and Facebook




Union News

More RMT

RMT confirms industrial action at Paisley and Dunfermline over CCTV safety threat (24 Apr) – Rail union RMT confirmed today that members will be taking strike action at Paisley and Dunfermline in a dispute over staff reductions and an attack on working patterns that the union says would seriously compromise public safety. Scotrail have been determined to axe core CCTV staff at both locations with 17 staff posts identified for the chop with remaining staff then expected to tear apart their work-life balance and domestic arrangements at the whim of the company through agreeing to major changes to working practices including enforced night shifts. The attack on CCTV services comes at a time of a surge in anti-social behaviour, assaults on staff and passengers and a heightened security risk across the transport network. Following an overwhelming vote for action, and a failure by the company to listen to their staff, RMT has confirmed that members at Paisley and Dunfermline will take strike action by refusing to book on for shifts that commence between 00.01 hours and 23.59 hours on Saturday 5th May and 06.00 hours on Monday 11th June and 05.59 hours on Tuesday 12th June read more

RMT suspends strike action on Docklands Light Railway after significant progress in ACAS talks with the company (19 Apr) – RAIL UNION RMT has confirmed that scheduled strike action on Keolis Amey Docklands, due to start tomorrow and stretch across the weekend, has been suspended after significant progress has been made in talks with the company hosted by ACAS. The union remains in dispute read more



TSSA Strike dates in ScotRail CCTV affect Bank Holiday and Scottish Cup Final (20 Apr) – TSSA announce strikes on 5th May (Bank Holiday Saturday), 19th May, (Scottish Cup Final Day), and Monday 11th June. The dispute centres on ScotRail’s decision to cut 20% of its CCTV staff last Summer, leaving the remaining staff overstretched and stressed out. ScotRail have increased problems by attempting to enforce a compulsory night shift on staff, which will mean even fewer “eyes on the cameras” during the hours when passengers are travelling read more

More unrest from TSSA at ScotRail as pay offer is rejected (19 Apr) – Pay talks in ScotRail today (Thurs 19) ended with TSSA representatives warning the company to make a better offer at the next meeting or face the possibility of strike action. Representatives from TSSA rejected Abellio’s below inflation offer of 3.6% as a real terms pay cut after ScotRail opted not to use January’s Retail Price Index (RPI) to set the pay increase for the first time read more


More Unite

Luton Airport passengers face flights chaos as strike ballots announced (20 Apr) – Passengers using Luton Airport this summer could experience significant disruption as Unite announced a series of strike ballots over pay and zero hours’ contracts. Unite is balloting members directly employed by London Luton Airport in several different roles including firefighters and security guards. The strike ballot is in response to the company’s paltry pay offer, despite sky high pay increases for the bosses and record passenger numbers. Despite months of negotiations the company has offered to increase workers’ pay by just 2.15 per cent at a time when the Retail Price Index (RPI) is 3.3 per cent. In a consultative ballot workers solidly rejected the company’s offer and backed an industrial action ballot. Unite is also balloting its members at Menzies Aviation which undertakes baggage handling at the airport. The dispute concerns the company’s failure to honour a commitment to revisit pay rates due to inflation levels, breaches of the recognition agreement, poor working conditions and a lack of communication. Unite’s members employed by Clece Care Service Ltd, which provide assistance at the airport to passengers with reduced mobility will also be balloted in a dispute concerning the use of zero hours contracts, the failure to pay at least the real living wage, and bullying by the station manager. Finally, Unite members at Luton Airport’s branches of International Currency Exchange will be balloted over a dispute over the failure to pay a premium/unsocial hours payment for staff working before 06:00 read more. All of the separate ballots will open next week and will close on Friday 11 May 2018. If members vote in favour of industrial action strikes could begin by the end of next month read more

TGI Fridays hit with first ever strike ballots over tips and minimum wage abuses – The first strikes in a UK casual dining chain in decades have moved a step closer today (Wednesday 11 April), after Unite notified TGI Fridays that it will be balloting workers in two branches for strike action, in what will be the first in a series of strike ballots over the coming months. Waiting staff at the American dining chain’s Milton Keynes and Covent Garden restaurants are being balloted from Wednesday 18 April over breaches of the company’s tip and tronc policy and minimum wage abuses. The ballots close on Tuesday 1 May. TGI Fridays which has 83 branches across the UK is now facing a wave of rolling strike ballots as the union prepares to ballot workers in two restaurants a week from Friday 13 April read more

Support Ian Allinson: Protesters accuse Fujitsu of victimising whistleblowers read more. Keep up to date with Unite: Our union in Fujitsu website. Protest outside Japanese Embassy 12noon Thursday April 5th – 101-104 Piccadilly, Mayfair, London W1J 7JT Facebook event



Support Acas conciliators taking action (23 Apr) – Show support for PCS members who work as conciliators at Acas taking industrial action in a long-running dispute over the imposition of detrimental changes made by conciliation service management. Our members are due to begin action short of strike from Wednesday (25 April) which will include no obligation to undertake any reactive or proactive work on fast-track early conciliation cases or employment tribunal cases read more

Vigil calls time on justice cuts (20 Apr) – Workers from across the justice sector joined together to call time on justice cuts at a vigil for justice. The Ministry of Justice has been the hardest hit department by spending cuts with its budget stripped from £9.3 billion in current prices in 2010/11 to £5.6bn by 2019/20, with £1.5bn owed to the Treasury. More than 5,000 MoJ jobs have been cut with over 220 courts closed since 2010. The event in London on Wednesday (18) evening was organised by the Justice Alliance and Speak Up For Justice, supported by many Community Law Centres, PCS, Napo, Unite the Union, the TUC, the Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers and DPAC read more

30 April join the Big PCS Pay Petition Day – PCS is urging all members to get involved in our Big Pay Petition Day on 30 April to continue to put pressure on the government as we await its response to our pay claim. 30 April is our Big Pay Petition Day when members will sign A4 petitions, which should then be pasted to a single large placard and used in photo opportunities with the maximum number of members taking part. You can download and print a petition and ask your colleagues to sign it or ask your workplace rep for a copy to sign. Once everyone has signed your workplace petition take a group photo outside your workplace and email it to [email protected]. PCS communications will then publish your photos on our social media channels. We then want you to keep your petition and bring it to PCS annual delegate conference in Brighton next month read more

Campaign for ex-Carillion staff to be brought in-house at the British Museum Sign our online petition



Plans for strikes over low pay at five East Sussex schools (20 Apr) – TEACHERS at five schools across East Sussex are set to go on strike over being “denied recommended national rates” of pay. The National Education Union (NEU) has called for strikes at Priory School in Lewes, Uckfield Community Technology College, St Catherine’s College in Eastbourne, Peacehaven Community School and Seaford Head School to take place on Tuesday and on May 3. Teaching staff at Seaford Primary School were also meant to join them but have now called off the strike after management at the school agreed to meet the their pay requests read more on The Argus website

Support the London teachers’ strikes: Organising action, winning for education – Over the last few months, some tremendous campaigns – and some important victories – have been organised across the London Region by the National Education Union. Some campaigns can be won just by organisation and good arguments – but it sometimes needs the threat of collective industrial action to make sure those arguments are heard! Here are a few examples    Campaign against Newham academies boosted by victories

Next London strikes – Newham: Avenue out on April 24-26 and May 1-3; Cumberland April 24-26 and May 1-3

Weekend of action – The National Weekend of Action on 21st & 22nd April was a huge success, with thousands turning out to fight school cuts read more



Staff call for resignation of Hull College Group chief executive (19 Apr) – Staff at the Hull College Group have backed a vote of no confidence in chief executive officer Michelle Swithenbank. UCU members in the Hull branch (which covers the Hull and Goole campuses) overwhelmingly backed the motion which calls for her immediate resignation. UCU members in Harrogate and Unison members had already backed the motion. The vote comes just a day after UCU members at all three sites overwhelmingly voted for strike action to defend jobs. The college wants to axe around a third of the workforce through restructure proposals which would see the loss of 231 posts. The union said it expects to announce strike dates in the next few days read more   Hull College Group UCU members overwhelmingly back strike action over job cuts   Messages of support to Dave Langcaster via email [email protected]

Staff protest at Coventry University over ‘sham union’ dirty tricks (17 Apr) – Staff at the Coventry University Group took part in a rally on Wednesday over the use of a ‘sham union’ to deny employees proper trade union representation read more

Sign this petition to stop the anti-union dirty tricks in the Coventry University Group – We the undersigned condemn the management of the CU Group, a subsidiary company of Coventry University, who have sought to block UCU from applying for recognition by setting up a company union and recognising it



FE Lecturers’ Pay Claim: Failure to Agree (19 Apr) – At the National Joint Negotiation Committee (NJNC) on 19 April 2018, the fifth dispute meeting was held regarding the lecturer pay claim. Both sides were unable to reach agreement and following a final offer from the employers, a failure to agree was recorded. Both sides will now consult with their respective members. Despite this failure to agree, work will continue to progress on other matters under negotiation read more



Court of Appeal pay victory for Nottingham City Council employees (20 Apr) – Nottingham City Council was wrong to deny several hundred of its employees the right to incremental pay increases with effect from April 2011, says a judgment handed down at the Court of Appeal. The local authority workers, backed by their union UNISON, successfully challenged the Council’s 2011 decision to stop them receiving pay rises as they moved up salary scales linked to their jobs read more

HE unions and employers to meet again in May to talk about pay (17 Apr) – Meeting follows offer of 1.7%, or £325 a year, made in talks on 13 April read more

Hull recycling workers strike for sick pay – Branch appeals for donations to hardship fund as workers start two weeks on the picket line for sick pay from international company worth hundreds of millions. Recycling workers working for FCC Environment in Hull have started two weeks of strike action for decent pay sick pay, and are asking for donations to their hardship fund. Please send messages of solidarity and financial support to the Wilmington Strikers c/o Adrian Kennett Hull City UNISON 39, Alfred Gelder Street, Hull HU1 2AG. Please make cheques payable to UNISON Hull City Branch read more

Sign petition: Support sacked NHS Midwife Jane Greaves

Sign petition: End victimisation of trade unionists at Belle Vue Buses in Manchester

Support the Birmingham Homecare Workers read more on Birmingham Unison website Facebook page



Prison officers take legal action over pensions – The POA has started the process of initiating Employment Tribunal proceedings which will challenge the introduction of a new pension scheme for Prison Officers in 2015. It is anticipated that more than 3,500 POA members will join in the proceedings read more



Sign petition: Stop West Midlands Firefighters being taken away from the frontline! #FiredUp



Support the Picturehouse workers and sacked reps – Read the latest on Brixton Ritzy Facebook Page and those of Hackney, Crouch End, Central, Dulwich East and Duke of York Brighton

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



USDAW members at Tesco Dagenham urge the company to improve their pay offer following an overwhelming vote for industrial action – USDAW members working at Tesco Dagenham have voted by 70.1%, on a turnout of 62.6%, to take industrial action after the company failed to make an acceptable pay offer. The most recent offer, which has been rejected by USDAW members was worth less than 3% over 12 months. USDAW hopes that the company will now return to the negotiating table with a significantly improved offer so that industrial action can be avoided. The Tesco Dagenham distribution centre specialises in distributing to Tesco convenience stores within the Greater London area read more



University cleaners announce biggest ever outsourced workers strike in UK higher education – University of London workers organised by the Independent Workers Union of Great Britain (IWGB) are to hold the biggest-ever strike of outsourced workers in UK higher education history. Over 100 cleaners, porters, security officers, receptionists, gardeners, postroom staff and audiovisual staff are expected to walk out on 25 and 26 April after a near unanimous vote in favour of industrial action. The workers, who are employed by a number of outsourcing companies that have contracts with the University of London central administration, are demanding to be made direct employees of the university, and for equal terms and conditions with those that are directly employed read more   Donate to strike fund. Strike solidarity protest 4pm Wednesday April 25th Facebook event

BREAKING NEWS🚨🚨 THURSDAY’S PROTEST at ERNST & YOUNG’S CANCELLED!! – ISS World cancels plans to make cleaners redundant at Ernst & Young’s three London offices following IWGB campaign. Company has confirmed that all 65 cleaners will keep their jobs and not face any cuts in their hours. We have defeated two multi-billionaire corporations! Power to the cleaners!!! IWGB website


United Voices of the World

BREAKING: Cleaners set to strike for a living wage at the Ministry of Justice (MoJ)! – Talks have broken down between the cleaner’s union UVW and OCS, the cleaning contractor at the MoJ. Consequently, UVW will now ballot the cleaners for strike action which could commence as early as June 2018! We understand this will be the first cleaners strike at the MoJ, and perhaps even the first ever strike of any group of workers at the MoJ. The cleaners – who have shown great patience in the process so far – had hoped to reach a negotiated settlement to this dispute over the MoJ’s failure to pay them the London Living Wage or provide them with equality of sick pay and annual leave allowances with other MoJ staff. However, 4 months have now passed since first tabling their demands, and although there have been discussions, and their claim is still being considered, now by Richard Heaton, the Permanent Undersecretary of the MoJ, neither OCS nor the MoJ have committed to responding within an agreed timeframe. Everyday that goes past is another day the cleaners’ are forced to survive on the poverty wages they are paid at the MoJ, their wages being only £7.83 per hour, only around £1 higher per hour than they were 10 years ago. That’s why the cleaners find it wholly unreasonable and unacceptable to be expected to have wait for an answer indefinitely, hence why they have asked to be balloted for strike action. Stay tuned for strike dates! www.facebook.com/uvwunion



Other news

99th Anniversary of the Limerick Soviet – 5.30 pm till 8.00 pm, Friday 27th April at Marchmont Community Centre, 62 Marchmont Street, London, WC1N 1AB. The nearest tube station is Russell Square on the Piccadilly line

Watch the play about the 1970s Grunwick Strike ‘We Are The Lions, Mr Manager!’ (hosted by Coventry TUC) – 7.30pm Friday 4th May Belgrade Theatre, Belgrade Square, CV1 1GS Coventry Facebook event




Blacklisting & Victimisation

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: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eNcgrNs6pB8

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

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog





International union support for independent unions in Belarus read more







28 International Workers Memorial Day



1 May Day – International Workers Day

12 TUC demonstration ‘A new deal for working people’ https://www.tuc.org.uk/events/new-deal-working-people-tuc-march-rally



30 NHS 70th anniversary rally



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



9 NSSN TUC Rally in Manchester



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ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE