The second 48 hour strike at Prysmian Cables & Systems in Eastleigh, Hampshire will go ahead tomorrow and Thursday, November 7-8 over a derisory pay offer below inflation. These are on top of the five days of strike action already taken since 26 September
This is a report from last week’s first two day stoppage by Declan Clune, Secretary of Southampton & South West Hampshire Trades Union Council and a NSSN supporter:-
It was a ‘spooky’ affair outside Prysmian Cables this very cold morning with workers joining the picket line dressed appropriately for Halloween. One worker said jokingly, “We’re trying to scare the management back to the table”. One outfit was very fitting with a worker dressed as a ghost alongside a mocked up headstone with ‘RIP Fair Pay’ written on it.
This is now the 6th week that these Unite members have been in dispute with the company over a derisory pay offer below inflation and on the back of previous years of falling wages through similar derisory pay offers. Steve Phillips, one of the branch activists and organisers said that there has still be no contact from management although it has now been said that ACAS will be brought in to facilitate talks. Details and confirmation of this have not yet been received.
Speaking to workers on the picket line it is immediately obvious that there is a determined mood and some defiance now in regards to the management’s approach of ignoring the strike. It is now known that the strike, as well as overtime bans and work to rule currently in place inside the factory, have had a significant impact on output from the factory having significant financial implications on the company. One source stated that production has fallen by as much as half of that from before the dispute.
The majority of workers told me that morale inside the factory is at an all-time low, but morale for the strike and ongoing dispute is high and growing. Something I’m sure the management will not want to hear! Some described how a woman manager had passed the picket line the last time they were outside and had ‘stuck her middle finger up’ towards them as she entered the factory! This act has added further anger and resolve the pickets and one had what he called the perfect response to the manager, his Halloween outfit consisted of a large foam head covering in the shape of a hand held into a fist with the hat being a large middle finger raised in the air.
As we witnessed previously on this strike, many deliveries and logistics to the site were stopped by other workers arriving on site and refusing to cross the picket line. They were cheered and clapped as they left the factory with some tooting horns in support of the dispute long with other passing vehicles not linked to the factory.
A rather surprising development took place on the picket line this morning when the plant manager was seen coming to the security gate at the front of the factory where he stood for a while watching the picket. While there, he spoke to some of the Unite activists and said that the he and the company are happy to talk but this could only happen with the precondition that the strike is called off. He was advised clearly and categorically that this is not something they would do but restated their commitment to talk and resolve the issue fairly. This is clear evidence that the pressure is starting to tell!
Email messages of support and solidarity to [email protected]
BREAKING NEWS!! Unite: ‘WE WON AT TGI FRIDAYS’ – NSSN sends congratulations and solidarity to the TGI Fridays workers and Unite
From Unite London & Eastern: Workers at TGI Fridays won their well publicised dispute after taking highly effective industrial action and embarrassing the company into concessions.
The victory has meant:
* Reinstatement of staff meals
* Payment for unpaid trials
* Payment for unpaid online training
* Re-establishment of the Tronc Committee.
* 60%/40% split of tips changes to 65% / 35% in Feb preventing move to 50%/50%
(Making sure staff are paid correctly and on-time is critical for any organisation, but in the hospitality sector it can be particularly challenging – not just because of seasonal and irregular working hours, but also ensuring that tips and service distribution are correct and fair.
A common method for tip and service charge distribution is the tronc (derived from the French phrase ‘tronc des pauvres’ or ‘poor box’, which were used to collect donations). A tronc committee identifies the rules of the tronc – usually using ‘tronc points’ which employees are awarded based on their job role or length of service. Using this system, combined with the hours that the employee works over the predetermined ‘tronc period’, the share of the fund is calculated and then paid to the employee through payroll.)
Video of NSSN TUC Rally on September 9th: ‘General Election to get Tories out!’
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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RAIL UNION RMT is holding a series of public meetings across the North starting tonight in Leeds in support of striking train guards (6 Nov) read more
The meetings have been organised to put across the union’s case for the guard guarantee and to build public and political support for RMT members continuing the fight for safe, secure and accessible rail services for all.
The meetings will be addressed by RMT officials, local MPs, and others. Additionally, local representatives from Transport for the North and rail campaigners have been invited.
The forthcoming meetings are:
Tuesday 6 November 6.00pm Park Plaza, City Square, Boar Lane, Leeds, LS1 5NS
Speakers include: Mick Cash RMT General Secretary, Richard Burgon MP, Joanne Thomas (Yorks & Humber TUC)
Thurs 8 November 6.00pm Newcastle Royal Station Hotel, Neville Street, Newcastle, NE1 5DH
Speakers include: Mick Cash RMT General Secretary, Ian Mearns MP & Ian Lavery MP, Beth Farhat (Northern TUC)
Thurs 8 November 6.00pm Sheffield Showroom Cinema & Workstation, 15 Paternoster Row, Sheffield, S1 2BX
Speakers include: Steve Hedley RMT Senior Assistant General Secretary, Louise Haigh MP, Bob Jeffrey (Yorks & Humber TUC)
Thurs 15th November 6.00pm The Mechanics Centre, 103 Princess Street, Manchester, M1 6DD
Speakers include: Mick Cash RMT General Secretary, Rebecca Long-Bailey MP, Mayor Andy Burnham, Peter Middleman (North West TUC)
Thurs 29 November 6.00pm Liverpool Adelphi Hotel, Ranelagh St, Liverpool, L3 5UL
Speakers include: Steve Hedley, RMT Assistant General Secretary, Dan Carden MP, Lynn Collins, (North West TUC), Metro Mayor Steve Rotherham
RMT protest at Parliament today demanding repeal of rail privatisation act 25 years on (5 Nov) – Rail union RMT will be holding a protest at Parliament today (Monday 5th November) demanding the repeal of the Act ushering in the privatisation of Britain’s railways exactly 25 years after it passed through the Commons. With November 5th marking the twenty fifth anniversary of the passing of the Railways Act, which condemned lifeline transport services in Britain to a generation of fragmentation and exploitation, RMT will be launching a fresh drive to end the privatised rip off which has left passengers paying the highest fares in Europe to travel on overcrowded, unreliable services. That means repeal of the 1993 Act to pave the way for the return of the entire railway to public ownership read more
RMT to go ahead with ballot of Paddington depot members over victimised rail guard (2 Nov) – RAIL UNION RMT will ballot all guards and drivers at Paddington Depot for strike action and action short of a strike over the victimisation and decision to sack Great Western Railway (GWR) rail guard and union activist Ben Frederick. Frederick has been sacked following a disciplinary hearing this week after he was assaulted at Evesham Station by a member of the public while working his train as a guard (train manager) on Saturday 11 August 2018 read more
Support RMT Northern and South Western Railway strikes – General Secretary Mick Cash said; “RMT members are standing solid, determined and united again this morning on both Northern and South Western Railway in the long-running fight for safety, security and access on our trains while the private train companies gamble with their passengers well-being.
Guards and Train Drivers on South Western Railway are instructed to not to book on for any shifts that commence between:-
- 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 17th November 2018
- 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 24th November 2018
All RMT Arriva Rail North Conductor, Conductor Instructor and Train Driver members are instructed to not to book on are for any shifts that commence between:-
- 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 3rd November 2018
- 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Saturday 10th November 2018 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 read more
RMT announces 24 hours of strike action on Central Line over breakdown in industrial relations and abuse of procedures – Tube union RMT today confirmed 24 hours of strike action on London Underground’s Central Line over a comprehensive breakdown in industrial relations, a failure to employ enough drivers, a wholesale abuse of agreed procedures and the victimisation of a trade union member. As a result of a total management failure to address the issues RMT has announced the following drivers’ action:
Not to book on for any shifts that commence between:-
- 00:01 hours and 23:59 hours on Wednesday 7th November 2018 read more
DB Cargo – Control members Vote YES to Industrial Action (5 Nov) – TSSA Control members have voted in favour to take industrial action over the Company’s failure to make a satisfactory and reasonable offer in respect of their pay and T&C read more
Cloud-cuckoo proposals to break up Cal Mac could lead to strikes (2 Nov) – TSSA leader, Manuel Cortes, has revealed his fears that Transport Minister Michael Matheson is on the verge of breaking up Cal Mac ferries. Cortes is raising the alarm after reading a recommendation to do just that from the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee (RECC).And he predicts industrial action on the lifeline ferry services should Matheson heed that advice read more
Royal Bolton Hospital: Another victory against NHS privatisation (7 Nov) – A dispute involving Unison health union members employed as cleaners, caterers, porters and other ancillary workers at the Royal Bolton Hospital has won. The workers took 48 hours of solid strike action in October against their employer and were gearing up for a further three days on strike read more
Bradford University staff strike against job cuts (31 Nov) – “Today is the day we say enough. Together we can’t be defeated.” Thus opened the strike rally on the first day of 4 days of strikes by unison members at Bradford University. Bradford University is trying to cut 165 jobs (down from the original 250) in is latest in a series of ‘re-structuring’. Garbed in Halloween costumes, around 50 unison members were on picket lines at both the main university campus and a satellite campus. Angry is high amongst staff. One striker Stephen said “I’ve only been working here ten months and already I’ve been through 2 restructures.” Unison, UCU and Bradford Students Union all have passed motions of no confidence in the universities Vice-Chancellor, Unison’s having 98% of members demanding he resign. Messages of support can be sent to [email protected] read more
Support the Glasgow Equal Pay strikers – More than 8,000 union members – overwhelmingly low paid women – took strike action two weeks ago, with 10,000 marching to a rally outside the city hall on the first day of the strike read more
Strike fund donations to:
Sort code 60 83 01 A/c Number 20275789
Drew Rigden Treasurer UNISON Glasgow City Branch
84 Bell Street, Glasgow, G1 1LQTel: 0141-552-7069
Support the striking Birmingham homecare workers – Please send messages of support and donations to Unison Birmingham branch, 46 The Priory Queensway Birmingham B4 7LR. Email [email protected] Facebook group – https://www.facebook.com/birminghamunison/
Grimethorpe primary school dinner ladies go on permanent strike – Dinner ladies have gone on permanent strike in a dispute over plans to axe their jobs. Ladywood Primary School, in Grimethorpe, South Yorkshire, has proposed that teaching assistants would supervise meals to save cash. It wants to make all nine school meals supervisory assistant roles redundant which has resulted in six days of strikes by Unison union members read more
Support Camden NSL workers – Camden UNISON members working for private company NSL as traffic wardens recently took 5 days of strike action as part of their fight for decent pay. They are asking for £11.15 an hour, an amount that Camden UNISON believes is very reasonable particularly when the top director at NSL gets over £320 an hour. For updates about the dispute and to send messages of support, contact [email protected] read more on Camden Unison website
Veolia drivers in Cheshire to ballot for strike action in row over unpaid shifts (2 Nov) – Unite members, employed by the UK’s leading waste management provider, Veolia Environmental Services UK Ltd, at the Ditton Road site in Widnes, Cheshire are set to ballot for strike action following a long running dispute over unpaid shifts. Workers at the Widnes site are employed on a contract of any five shifts from seven. However, drivers are not being paid if they work a sixth shift in a seven day period. Following numerous meetings between Veolia management and Unite, the company has failed to offer a suitable payment to reflect the amount of hours being worked by Unite members.Unite has made every attempt to resolve this dispute including meetings under the auspices of the conciliation service Acas, but has grown frustrated with a refusal by company bosses to seriously address workers’ concerns over unpaid shifts. The strike ballot, over the requirement of workers to work a sixth day in a seven day period, opens on Thursday 8 November and closes on Monday 19 November read more
Workers, who assist 670,000 passengers at Gatwick Airport, to strike in pay row (1 Nov) – Gatwick Airport workers, who look after an estimated 670,000 passengers annually, many with disabilities, will strike for six days in the next two months in a row over a ‘massive inequality’ in pay. Thousands of passengers who need assistance will be affected when more than 250 workers stage three 48 hour stoppages from 05.00 on 20 November, ending at 05.00 on 22 November. The strike action will be repeated at the same times on 26/28 November and on 21/23 December read more
Twelve days of strikes start at Derbyshire crane firm in pay dispute – The first industrial action at a leading Derbyshire crane manufacturer Street Crane for 20 years has started as the company has been unwilling to engage in constructive pay talks…The first of the 24 hour stoppages was on Monday 15 October and followed by strikes on 22 and 29 October and 5 November. If the dispute is not settled by then, four 48 hour stoppages will go ahead on 12, 19 and 26 November and 3 December, all commencing at 00:01 read more Watch as workers at High Peak factory take strike action in pay dispute (from Buxton Advertiser)
GMB & Unite
Support the fight to save Appledore shipyard: GMB Demands Answers Over Appledore Closure (Nov 2) – Why did the Government’s offer to Babcock come in so late – was it just to cover Ministers’ own backs, asks GMB Union? GMB, the shipbuilding union, is demanding answers over the decision to close Appledore shipyard. The union ensured the matter was raised in the House of Commons within hours of the announcement – and has now written to Babcock seeking clarification read more
Offshore workers vote for industrial action (5 Nov) – Union meeting contractors association tomorrow for crunch talks expecting improved offer to avert action. GMB, the union for offshore workers, has confirmed that most of its members covered by the Offshore Contractors Association (OCA) agreement have voted for industrial action. The union said offshore workers backed action in the vote on a row over pay. It follows the rejection of the OCA pay offer in July. The relevant trade unions are now set to meet the OCA tomorrow for crunch talks in an attempt to avoid the dispute from escalating. GMB members have been seeking a 4% uplift in basic pay and associated allowances read more
Big win for GMB foster carers as government extends child bereavement leave (Nov 2) – It’s right that foster carers, special guardians and kinship carers are entitled to time to grieve for children they have cared for says GMB Union. GMB, the union for foster carers, are celebrating a big win after the Government today announced they would be included under new bereavement leave laws read more
Further NASUWT Strikes To Defend Pay And Pensions (Oct 310 – Our members voted on a large turn out, almost unanimously, to strike as all other avenues have been met with deaf ears says GMB Union. GMB Members working for teachers’ union NASUWT will take further strike action to defend their pensions and pay on November 5 and 9 read more
Littlegreen School academy conversion row: Staff balloted over strike action (5 Nov) – Staff at the Littlegreen School in Compton are being balloted for strike action over the threat to jobs and terms and conditions read more at Chichester Observer
Enough is Enough: March for Education – Tuesday November 20th. Assemble 5.30pm Westminster Cathedral, Ashley Place, SW1P 1LT London Facebook event
Vote to reject the final pay offer from COSLA and the Scottish Government read more
Peterloo film should inspire people to make voice heard (31 Oct) – Director Mike Leigh’s film about the Peterloo Massacre opens on Friday (2), in a Q&A with PCS, producer Georgina Lowe tells us she hopes the film encourages people to use their voices to make their opinions heard in these challenging times. On 16 August, 1819, a peaceful pro-democracy rally at St Peter’s Field in Manchester turned into one of the bloodiest and most notorious episodes in British history when cavalry charged into a crowd of 60,000–80,000, who had gathered to demand the reform of parliamentary representation, resulting in 15 deaths and over more than 600 injuries. The film’s producer Georgina Lowe explains why now is the right time for a film about the massacre read more
NUJ holds candle-lit vigils for Jamal Khashoggi (1 Nov) – A silent, candle-lit vigil was held by the NUJ outside the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, London, on the eve of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists read more
Donate to the Picturehouse Cinema strike fund: https://www.crowdpac.co.uk/campaigns/250/picturehousestrike
Worldwide walkout at Google against sexual harassment read more
Fighting Austerity in Leeds – Conference organised by Leeds TUC
10am-4pm, Saturday 24th November
Swarthmore Education Centre
2-7 Woodhouse Square, Leeds, LS3 1AD 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
Poland: Workers at LOT Polish Airlines (PLL LOT) win victory. They were on strike since 18 October over the intimidation and sacking of trade unionists, unacceptable and dangerous working conditions, and the violation of the Labour Code. We can report the reinstatement of 67 strikers who were illegally sacked since the strike began
17 National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism and Racism Central London
PHONE 07952 283 558
EMAIL mailto:[email protected]
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE