413: Teaching unions start indicative ballot on pay & funding

This week, we headline with the consultative ballot by teaching unions. This is from the NEU:-

Hands up because enough is enough!

Recently, we set the Government six tests for school funding before the Chancellor’s autumn Budget. This was the Government’s opportunity to change course and properly fund the schools our children deserve. Instead, the Government has failed children once again.

Our schools are at a breaking point and asking them to use their funds to meet a proportion of the latest teacher’s pay award is the final straw. A one-off payment for ‘little extras’ will do nothing to address the cuts faced by schools or the growing teacher recruitment and retention crisis.

Following the Government’s failure to address the school and college funding crisis in the recent Budget, the National Education Union (NEU), along with NAHT and ASCL, are taking the unprecedented step of simultaneously consulting with their respective members on what steps to take next read more

Newham demo Feb 26
Newham anti-academies demonstration February 2018

Enough is Enough: March for Education – Tuesday November 20th. Assemble 5.30pm Westminster Cathedral, Ashley Place, SW1P 1LT London Facebook event

Save John Roan! Lobby Greenwich Council Cabinet 6pm Wednesday 14 November Woolwich Town Hall – The Cabinet intend to start the conversion process to make John Roan an academy. This would be a disaster for the school and our children. The UST is not fit to run our school and its an outrage that it could be given our community school for 125 years! We want everyone who cares about the future of The Roan to attend the cabinet meeting and make our voices heard! Facebook event



March against the far-right – 12pm Saturday November 17th in Central London

The NSSN is supporting this Saturday’s National Unity demonstration against fascism and racism read more from the TUC website. The NSSN has supported counter-protests against the Democratic Football Lads Alliance and other far-right organisations. Trade unions are beginning to mobilise, including the RMT and Unite. RMT members were attacked after the demonstration by the DFLA on July 14th in London. These included the union’s assistant general secretary Steve Hedley. This shows the true anti-union character of this far-right organisation. The NSSN will work with unions and anti-racist organisations against racist division that only benefits the employers and the Establishment. We believe that the unions have to play the leading role in building the mass campaign that is necessary

NSSN on Oct 13 anti-DFLA counter-protest with PCS assistant general secretary Chris Baugh
NSSN on Oct 13 anti-DFLA counter-protest with PCS assistant general secretary Chris Baugh



NSSN news

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Union News


Support RMT Northern and South Western Railway‎ strikes – 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:-

  • 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 17th November 2018
  • 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 24th November 2018
  • 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 1st December 2018
  • 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 8th December 2018
  • 00.01 Hours and 23.59 Hours on Saturday 15th December 2018 read more

RMT Northern members standing up for rail safety on 35th day of strike action in guards’ dispute

RMT public meetings to support Northern Rail guards:

November 15 – 6pm Mechanics Centre, 103 Princess Street, Manchester, M1 6DD

November 29 – 6pm Adelphi Hotel, Ranelagh Street, Liverpool, L3 5UL

RMT SWR Waterloo picket Aug 18
RMT SWR Waterloo picket Aug 18

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

Metropolitan South group to be balloted over management bullying (8 Nov) – We note the report from the Lead Officer, and that despite the Stations & Revenue Functional Council Reps best efforts in raising these matters with the company they have remained belligerent and:

  • Refused to re-instate Bro Mahoney and drop the misplaced charges against him.
  • Continue to victimise our Rep Bro Rollinger and Bro Glasstone.

In light of the continuing and entrenched bullying by management we instruct the General Secretary to urgently ballot all CSM 1, CSS 1, CSA 1 & CSA 2’s at the Baker Street area of the Metropolitan Line South Cover Group read more

Central Line strike solid (7 Nov) – RMT members rock solid in strike action on Central Line over breakdown in industrial relations and abuse of procedures. Tube union RMT confirmed that members are standing rock solid this morning at the start of 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. Today’s action has gone ahead after LU management refused to lift a finger to make serious progress in talks aimed at resolving the dispute. As a result of that total management failure to address the issues the drivers’ have had no option but to take action exactly as ‎planned with the disruption to services wholly down to the tube bosses intransigence read more



Bill Ronksley (6 Nov) – It is with great sadness that ASLEF this morning has to announce the death of Bill Ronksley, a legend of the labour movement. Mick Whelan, general secretary, said: ‘We are sad to have to announce that Bill, one of ASLEF’s greatest presidents, a great trade unionist, and an inspiration to so many of us in the labour movement, passed away peacefully in the night. We know our sorrow will be shared by all those who knew and loved him.’ Tosh McDonald, president, said: ‘Bill, who I met when I joined the railway, was the full-time officer in District 4 then. He took me under his wing and for that I will always be grateful. He was a giant of ASLEF and did so much for this trade union.’ Bill, 94, was a member of ASLEF for 76 years. He was still living in Sheffield, where he was always keen to see and talk to old comrades. Tosh and Ray Jackson, chair of ASLEF’s RMS committee, visited him regularly read more



Campaign to save nurseries goes national (12 Nov) – A group campaigning to save five council-run nurseries in Salford has joined up with campaigners from across the country at a rally in Salford. The five nurseries in Salford are all rated outstanding by Ofsted, but were threatened with closure earlier this year when government cuts removed their funding. UNISON members, staff, and parents have all been campaigning to keep them open. In response to the campaign, Salford mayor Paul Dennett agreed to find a further £1.5m to keep them open until at least August 2019. However, there are no guarantees of their future beyond that date read more

Scotland’s local government members reject pay offer (9 Nov) – Consultative ballot sees 79% vote against 3% offer and 67% vote in in favour of moving to industrial action. Scottish council workers have rejected the employers’ latest pay offer – 3% for those earning less than £80,000 a year – in a consultative ballot of UNISON members. UNISON and the other Scottish local government joint unions meet today to discuss the results of all the unions’ consultations with members. Unite and GMB members have also rejected the offer. The UNISON consultative ballot saw 79% of those taking part vote to reject the offer from employers’ body CoSLA while 67% voted in favour of industrial action to pursue the joint union pay claim. UNISON Scotland will now start to take steps towards an industrial action ballot and discuss plans for that with branches and activists, including at the union’s Scotland local government conference on 30 November read more

UNISON declares victory in Bradford redundancy row (8 Nov) – University of Bradford climbs down on redundancy numbers the week after four-day strike. UNISON has declared victory in a dispute with the University of Bradford over its plans for 250 redundancies, following four days of strike action last week. The university announced that 250 jobs were “at risk” of redundancy in June, sparking the industrial action process which culminated in last week’s strike 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

read more from Glasgow City Unison Facebook page

Glasgow equal pay strike Oct 23

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



Cammell Laird workers vote to strike over ‘unnecessary’ job cuts (9 Nov) – Unite members at Cammell Laird have overwhelmingly voted to take strike action over plans by bosses to slash the workforce by 40 per cent, raising the prospect of industrial action hitting operations at the Birkenhead shipyard in the run-up to Christmas. A total of 78.9 per cent backed strike action and 84 per cent industrial action short of a strike in the ballot on a turnout of 75.4 per cent read more

Unite vows to fight Schaeffler ‘body blow’ closures (6 Nov) – Plans announced today (Tuesday 6 November) by Schaeffler to close its factories in Llanelli and Plymouth were described as yet another ‘body blow’ for UK automotive workers, by Unite the union, which vowed to fight for every job as it sought to avert the closures 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)

Support the Hampshire Prysmian Cables & Systems strike – Email messages of support and solidarity to [email protected] read more


GMB & Unite

Support the fight to save Appledore shipyard: GMB Demands Answers Over Appledore Closure – 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

Unite: Appledore shipyard closure ‘a hammer blow’ for the workers and Devon economy



Post Office – 1st December Day of Action – Join us! (Nov 9) – Saturday December 1st will see protests in cities and towns all over the UK, as the CWU leads a nationwide Day of Action in defence of the UK’s Post Office network. Speaking at a lively central London launch yesterday, general secretary Dave Ward pointed out that the Post Office bosses’ announcement of the the ‘franchising’ of 74 Crown offices to retailer WH Smith, impacting on some 7-800 jobs, marked a change in their strategy from “managed decline to terminal decline. “And that’s what we’re facing unless we can force a change of direction,” he told the audience of CWU branch and regional officers, explaining two key reasons for the root causes of this crisis. Firstly, he sharply criticised “the wrong decision to separate the Post Office from Royal Mail” and reminded people that “no other government in the world has done this.” And then he turned his fire on the individuals running the company, slamming “senior managers, who get paid large amounts of money and, rather than improve things, they smash them up.” In the forthcoming campaign, “we need the whole union to get behind this campaign, win as much political support as possible and get out and about among local communities too – fighting as hard as we can to stop as many of these franchises and closures as we can,” Dave urged. But as well as waging this defensive battle, our general secretary added that the union must also be at the spearhead of fighting for a positive future for our post office network, waging and winning the battle of ideas and setting out our own vision read more



PCS to consult members on plan to win on pay in 2019 (9 Nov) – The PCS national executive committee met on Wednesday (7 November) and made important decisions about our national public sector pay campaign. The meeting followed a 6-week consultation period with branches, and the NEC decided that the information will be used to develop an outline campaign strategy for pay in 2019. The NEC will agree the strategy at its December meeting. The campaign plan will include the size of the pay claim we want to submit to government, how we’re going to campaign politically and through negotiations to pressure the government to treat our members more fairly. And we will consider the timing and nature of any industrial action ballot, around March next year, if it’s required to ensure we can force the government to think again. Watch general secretary Mark Serwotka’s latest pay video, filmed outside the Treasury yesterday read more



Firefighters warn of unsafe cuts in Tyne and Wear (8 Nov) – Firefighters expressed both shock and anger at the announcement from Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Authority (TWFRA) that due to government cuts to the tune of £3.6m they intend to make further cuts to an already dangerously depleted service. At a fire authority meeting this week they agreed to a public consultation on three proposals that would significantly change the current operational response model read more



NIPSA Opposed to Two-Tier Health Service (9 Nov) – Responding to the news that Belfast City Council has given the green light for first phase of £100m King’s Hall healthcare facility plan, a NIPSA spokesperson has reacted strongly read more



Vote to reject the final pay offer from COSLA and the Scottish Government read more



Overwhelming vote of no confidence in City College Plymouth principal (9 Nov) – UCU says time has come for ministers to step in and ‘deal with debacle’. Staff at City College Plymouth (CCP) have delivered damning votes of no confidence* in their principal, board of governors and management of the college’s finances. All bar one of the 350 staff polled (99.7%) said they did not have confidence in Phillips as head of the college. All (100%) said they had no confidence in the appointment of Martin Smith to manage the college’s finances. The board of governors also received overwhelming criticism as just three people said they had confidence in the governors to make sound appointments – 99% said they did not read more

Pay dispute resolved at Lewisham and Southwark colleges (9 Nov) – Staff working at Lewisham and Southwark colleges – part of the NCG group – will receive a pay rise of £350 (pro rata for part-time staff) and NCG has agreed to change the way it calculates strike pay deductions in the future. UCU members took a total of four days’ strike action in May and September this year. NCG originally deducted 1/260th of members’ annual salary, but has now agreed to take just 1/365th in future and repay the difference on previous deductions read more



Journalists vote for action at Newsquest Carlisle (12 Nov) – The NUJ Carlisle chapel of Newsquest Cumbria (formerly Cumbrian Newspapers, CN Group) have voted for strike action and action short of a strike, with a 87.5 per cent yes vote for both types of industrial action. The chapel will be meeting on Wednesday to decide the next steps following today’s result read more



Plymouth Theatre Royal pay negotiations continue (8 Nov) – Negotiations for staff at the Theatre Royal Plymouth to be paid the Real Living Wage continue to take place against the backdrop of #talkBECTU union week read more

Read the latest about the Picturehouse dispute 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



Highlands and Islands controllers prepared to take industrial action over pay. HIAL air traffic controllers make call in ongoing dispute (12 Nov) – Prospect Air Traffic Controllers in Highlands and Islands Airport Limited have voted near unanimously that they are prepared to take industrial action in an ongoing dispute over pay. Air Traffic Members rejected a 2% pay offer earlier in the year as it fails to close the substantial gap between HIAL and the rest of the air traffic industry in the UK and across Europe. Prospect balloted controllers holding an operational licence. Every member voted and there was near unanimous support for action. HIAL have agreed to emergency talks later this week to resolve the dispute. Both Prospect and HIAL are entering into the talks to try and seek a resolution read more



Fast food shut down FFS410 report back – from War on Want website:

On 4th October 2018 there was an historic co-ordinated strike of hospitality workers. It was named “Fast Food Shutdown 4-10” (#FFS410). Workers in hospitality and food couriers in the gig economy took action across the UK to demand an end to poverty wages and for their right to a union to be respected.

Initially, two unions – the Bakers Food and Allied Workers Union (BFAWU) and Unite – called co-ordinated strikes of workers at Wetherspoons, McDonald’s and TGI Fridays. Following the announcement, the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) Couriers Network called a strike of Uber Eats and Deliveroo couriers in Brighton, Bristol, Cardiff, Glasgow, London, Newcastle, Plymouth and Southampton. This call out was then supported by IWGB (Independent Workers of Great Britain) and GMB read more



Protest: University of London Foundation Day 5pm – Tuesday 20 November is the University of London’s Foundation Day, when honorary degrees approved by the Collegiate Council are presented by University Chancellor Princess Anne. This will take place in an evening ceremony in Senate House amidst a level of luxury, lavishness and magnificence only made possible by the hard work of the currently outsourced staff of University of London. To give Princess Anne a warm welcome on behalf of all the exploited workers of UoL join us and demonstrate outside Senate House on Malet St to demand the University of London end discrimination, take direct responsibility for the employment and working conditions of outsourced workers and bring them in-house now! Facebook event


United Voices of the World union

Protest David Gauke, Minister of Justice’s private drinks: 6.15pm Monday 19 November – We would like to invite you all to a peaceful and lively protest outside David Gauke’s private drinks reception Monday 19th November at 6.15pm. The event will be held 5 minutes from St. Jame’s tube station. https://www.tickettailor.com/events/twocitiesconservatives/205857/

David Gauke is the current Minister of Justice, but sadly fails to live up to that title. Workers in his ministry – security and cleaners – continue to receive a poverty wage of between £7.83 and £9 and hour despite fighting for an increase to the London Living Wage of £10.55 per hour for nearly a year. Plus, as outsourced workers they are treated as a second class workforce and are only entitled to the statutory minimum Terms and Conditions Facebook event




Other news

Reel News film night – 8pm November 20 Effra Social, 89 Effra Road, Brixton SW2 1DF: ‘American Climate Rebels – Transforming Communities from Below Facebook event

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

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





Turkey: Trade union leader assassinated in Turkey – IndustriALL Global Union is horrified to hear that Brother Abdullah Karacan, general president of our Turkish affiliate DİSK/Lastik-İş (Rubber and Chemical Workers’ Union) was assassinated today, 13 November, while visiting union members at a Goodyear factory in the city of Adapazarı read more on IndustriALL Global Union website

Turkey: We support the TARIS workers! – Seven workers at the TARIS Factory in Izmir (Turkey), which produces olives and olive oil, were dismissed from their jobs for joining the trade union. When their colleagues protested the dismissal of the seven workers outside the factory, the factory owner called the riot police and 65 workers were arrested. Following solidarity campaigns and pressure, the workers were released from custody however the seven workers have not been reinstated. Despite trade union rights being a constitutional right in Turkey, workers are being dismissed for exercising this basic right.

The dismissal of the seven workers is illegal, however the factory owner committing this illegality is supported by a state which sent its own forces and attacked workers seeking to protect their rights.

The workers need our solidarity. We, the progresive forces and trade unions in the UK, call on the rights of the TARIS workers to be respected and for those who have been dismissed from their jobs to be reinstated.

TARIS workers are not alone.

In solidarity,

SPOT (Solidarity with the people of Turkey)

Spanish state: General student strike on 14 November! Sexism out of our schools! Read more

USA: From Unite website – National Grid told: End the £1 million-a-day lock-out (8 Nov) – Unions react to National Grid half-year results, calling for end to £1 million-a-day lock-out. According to National Grid figures released today, its lock-out of 1,200 Massachusetts gas workers has cost £1 million a day for each of the 97 lock-out days accounted for in the half-year results (the lockout began on 25 June 2018 with National Grid results covering the period to 30 September 2018). The company confirmed that it had incurred additional costs of £97 million to end September associated with the lockout of two of its gas unions in Massachusetts over employment terms and conditions which have been classified as exceptional. The costs to date include the employment of contract workers to replace those locked-out, increased supervision to ensure safe operation by less experienced workers, and the establishment of temporary work sites. Unite the Union and United Steelworkers, under their international structure Workers Uniting, reacted to this morning results, calling for UK headquarter intervention to end local National Grid intransigence read more







17 National Unity Demonstration Against Fascism and Racism Central London




6 2019 NSSN Conference Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL



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