NSSN 218: Defend PCS: Stop HMRC anti-union plot

November 13, 2014 in Bulletins

Senior HMRC officials hatch anti-union plot

(Statement from PCS website)

The most senior civil servants in HM Revenue and Customs have hatched a “deeply disturbing” politicised plot to destabilise our union, it has been revealed.

A leaked memo, written for HMRC’s executive committee, outlines a plan to “marginalise” us because of our continuing opposition to cuts and closures.

Our general secretary Mark Serwotka has written to HMRC chief executive Lin Homer to say we believe it signals a “major and damaging change in industrial relations” and to call on her to publicly disown it… continued here

Letter from Mark Serwotka

 

NSSN News

 

The famous pink NSSN £10 minimum wage t-shirts are still available. Email us to order – £8 each. We have the following sizes: women – small, medium, large, XL and men – small, medium, large, XL, XXL

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 here

Yorkshire NSSN Conference – Saturday November 22nd Cosmopolitan Hotel Lower Briggate, Leeds, Yorkshire LS1 4AE

Midlands NSSN Conference – Saturday March 14th 2015 Unite Offices, Birmingham download leaflet

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 info@shopstewards.net

 

 

Union News

NHS strikes November 24th Eleven trade unions representing NHS workers including nurses, midwives, cleaners, pharmacists, scientists, porters, secretaries, paramedics, occupational therapists, radiographers, dieticians, healthcare assistants, kitchen and maintenance staff will stage a four-hour stoppage in the morning on Monday 24 November 2014. There will also be action short of strike around this date. See the following websites: Unison   Unite    GMB    Royal College of Midwives    Society of Radiographers    UCATT     British Association of Occupational Therapists     British Dietetic Association      Hospital Consultants and Specialists Association The POA and MiP are also on strike

From GMB website: Nov 20th Parliament Vigil for NHS – Vigil outside Parliament at 7pm on 20 November on Eve of Debate on New Draft Legislation to Rescue NHS from Competition Quagmire read more

 

UCATT

Crane drivers tell HTC “It’s time to pay up!” (Nov 7) – Hundreds of crane drivers from the UCATT construction union picketed building sites in London and around the country this morning in a dispute over pay with HTC Plant Limited. Workers had voted 94% in favour of strike action and 94.6% in favour of industrial action short of strike action. The turnout was in excess of 80%. There was a mass picket outside the Nova Square site in Victoria which saw concrete drivers refusing to cross picket line read more from NSSN website    read more on UCATT website

STOP PRESS!  HTC crane drivers call off second strike day (Nov 12) – Crane drivers have called off a second day of planned strike action this Friday to consider a new pay offer. Hirer HTC Plant has tabled a new pay package proposal after a day of talks with construction union UCATT officials on Tuesday read more from Construction Enquirer website

 

Unite

Jaguar Land Rover in industrial action warning as pay offer is overwhelmingly rejected
Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) was urged to get back around the negotiating table or face an industrial action ballot today (Thursday 13 November), after members of Britain’s largest union, Unite overwhelmingly rejected the carmaker’s pay offer and pension changes in a consultative ballot… more

 

Leicester component makers take industrial action over pay ‘betrayal’ (Nov 12) – Workers in Leicester at the specialist component maker, Trelleborg Industrial AVS began a programme of industrial action today (Wednesday 12 November) over what they have branded a ‘pay betrayal’. Over 160 members of Britain’s largest union, Unite, are taking part in a series of stoppages, as well as working to rule and refusing to work overtime following the imposition of below inflation pay offer by management at the Swedish owned firm. Members have worked hard to support the company, which has just won a lucrative contract with Bombardier, and accepted a pay freeze to get it back on track last year. Yet, despite a record year, members have grown increasingly frustrated by the company’s refusal to engage in meaningful talks and address their concerns over pay. In addition to action short of a strike, production at the factory will be hit with each shift walking out for one hour today and on Friday 14 November and for two hours on Monday 17 November. A picket line outside the factory is also being organised for Friday 14 November between 10:30 and 13:30

St Mungo’s Broadway strike called off after management climb down (5 Nov) – Staff at the homeless charity St Mungo’s Broadway (SMB) have called off a 10-day strike after a climb down by management during talks at the conciliation service ACAS, their union Unite announced today see Reel News video of victory rally

Unite LE1111 housing workers branch website www.housingworkers.org.uk

 

BECTU

West End theatre: members’ vote starts this week (Nov 10) – BECTU members will start voting this week on a pay proposal affecting the 40-plus commercial theatres covered by the union’s agreement with the Society of London Theatre (SOLT). Technical, front of house and show staff working on the musicals, straight plays and other entertainment which make West End theatre such a huge and profitable attraction, will consider proposals hammered out over more than 12 hours at ACAS last week read more

Living Wage campaign continues across Picturehouse (Nov 6) – The campaign to persuade Picturehouse cinemas to adopt the Living Wage at all its venues continues. Today, backed by the TUC, BECTU has launched a petition appealing to all of the group’s customers to support payment of the Living Wage to the majority of the company’s staff who are paid much less than the Living Wage read more   sign petition here

 

GMB

See Blacklisting section for ‘Crocodile Tears’ Tour and GMB website

Humber Refinery workers walk out for a third day in safety row (Nov 12) – Workers have walked out of an oil refinery in North Lincolnshire for a third day. Some 450 contract employees have stopped working at the Humber Refinery in South Killingholme claiming concerns over “safety issues”. The industrial action follows a gas leak last week in which two people were taken to hospital read more from BBC website

Anglian Water strike ballot over pay (Nov 12) – GMB CEC gives authority for official ballot for strike action at Anglian Water in pay dispute. There was a pay freeze last year and this year the company imposed a 2.5% increase after it had been rejected by members says GMB. The GMB Central Executive Council (CEC) has given authority for an official ballot for strike action for members Anglian Water in a dispute over pay. Unite will also ballot members read more

Dispute Looms at Jacobs Liverpool (Nov 10) – “No crackers for Christmas” as dispute looms at Jacobs Liverpool over imposed changes to terms and conditions of employment. Senior management have now issued a letter to all employees at Aintree unilaterally suspending company sick pay with immediate effect says GMB. 800 GMB members at Jacobs Biscuits factory in Aintree Liverpool voted, in an official strike ballot that closed on Thursday 30th October, by 84% in favour of action in a dispute over sick pay read more

Sheffield recycling strike continues – “We’re going to stay on strike until we see Martine (Laffan-Butler, the owner of The Green Company) walking out of those gates.” So say the Sheffield re-cycling workers on indefinite strike since 1st November. Thirty GMB union members are taking the action for premium pay rates, welfare facilities, against management bullying and about the way the privatised and sub-contracted council service contract is being run. They want Laffan-Butler out because of serious concerns about the mis-use of public money and the sacking or forced resignation of the former senior management team who questioned this.

The strikers lobbied the City council meeting last week to pressure Labour to pull the contract from Green Company. In the Town Hall chamber they questioned Jack Scott, the Labour cabinet member responsible for environmental services. His reply was just flannel which brought the retort from the public gallery of “What a load of bollocks!” Two of the five recycling sites are closed by the strike. The strikers picket the other three tips to try to disrupt commercial waste operations whilst gathering signatures of support from the public. GMB officials have a meeting with the Council leader and chief executive on 11th November at which it is hoped for a breakthrough but the strikers insist that they will not go back until Laffan-Butler goes.

Send messages of support and donations to:

GMB Sheffield Office, Thorne House, 188/190 Norfolk Street, Sheffield S1 1SY  email:-  sheffield.office@gmb.org.uk

Sheffield Council Bosses Urged to Intervene in Waste Recycling Strike (Nov 10) read more from GMB Yorkshire & Derbyshire website

 

RMT

RMT to ballot Interserve cleaners across London Underground (12 Nov) – RMT confirmed today that it is to ballot Interserve staff across London Underground for both strike action and action short of a strike over a complete refusal by the company to treat the staff with dignity in the workplace and over a mismanagement of wages which leaves staff struggling to make ends meet. The union is also angry at a repeated refusal by Interserve to deal directly with the union over the staff grievances which has led to a breakdown in trust and normal industrial relations. The issues on London Underground are a direct mirror of the catalogue of complaints by staff working for Interserve at London Waterloo, one of the busiest railway stations in the world, which forced a similar ballot for action and which has culminated in a strike taking place on Monday at the station and a protest during the evening rush hour read more

RMT to lobby Minister and rail boss over Northern rail cuts (Nov 12) – RAIL UNION RMT is to lobby rail minister Claire Perry over the threatened carve up of rail services across the North when she arrives in York next week, with Northern Rail boss Alex Hynes in tow, for a presentation at the National Rail Museum in the City. The event at the National Rail Museum is scheduled to start at 6pm next Wednesday (19th November) with RMT promising a lively demonstration outside, assembling from 5.30pm, as part of the union’s on-going campaign against the threat to jobs, services and safety bound up in the Government and Rail North’s proposals for both the new Northern and TPE franchises read more

Staff at Waterloo Station to strike over victimisation (Nov 10) – Following a massive vote for action, cleaners employed by Interserve, looking after the busy and internationally famous Waterloo Station in London, are to take strike action over a comprehensive breakdown in industrial relations relating to a whole range of fundamental issues read more

New protest to support victimised RMT Sodexo rep Petrit Mihaj on November 14th meet 11am outside Sodexo HQ, One Southampton Row opposite Holborn tube station. Then there will a short march to 12noon the protest called by the National Union of Miners/Orgreave Truth & Justice Campaign outside the IPCC inquiry into Orgreave at 90 High Holborn WC1V 6BH

 

Unison

Welsh NHS strike suspended after new proposals put forward (Nov 6) – UNISON Cymru/Wales has today decided to suspend the industrial action in the NHS planned for Monday 10 November and consult members on new proposals put forward by the Welsh government. UNISON members working in the NHS in Wales were planning a half-day stoppage, followed by a week of action short of strike action, between Tuesday 12 and Friday 14 November read more

Care UK workers call for funds – Care UK strikers in Doncaster have launched a new appeal for solidarity funds. The workers – who were transferred from the NHS to private company Care UK – will have been on strike for a total of 90 days. Messages of support or donations should be sent to: Yvonne Butcher, branch secretary Doncaster District and Bassetlaw Health Branch, 20511 UNISON Office – Jenkinson House, White Rose Way, Doncaster DN4 5GJ. Make cheques out to ‘Doncaster, District and Bassetlaw Health Branch’.

 

UCU

University of Liverpool UCU vote to strike over pay threat (Nov 11) – Union members at the University of Liverpool have voted to strike in response to the management’s decision to dock 100 per cent of the salary of employees participating in a marking boycott read more from the TES

University of Aberdeen criticises pension changes as assessment boycott hits home (7 Nov) – The University of Aberdeen has joined a growing list of UK universities to criticise damaging plans put forward by the employers’ organisation, Universities UK, to change the pension scheme for academic and related staff at nine Scottish universities read more

Universities warned of further sanctions if they dock staff pay in assessment boycott (6 Nov) – As an assessment and marking boycott affecting over 1.2 million students starts today, UCU has written to the 69 affected universities* and warned of even greater sanctions if they dock full pay from the staff involved read more

UCU Left emergency meeting on USS pensions dispute this Saturday 2pm November 15th at Unite the Resistance conference Bloomsbury Central Baptist Church, 235 Shaftesbury Avenue, London WC2H 8EP

 

FBU

Firefighters lost around £600 of pay due to the recent 4-day strike. The National Shop Stewards Network appeals for hardship collections to be taken to local fire stations in support of the dispute. The national FBU hardship fund bank account details are: Sort code 08-60-01 Account number 20034726 FBU solidarity & financial appeal Sign FBU pension petition

FBU lobby of Parliament on Nov 6 – Firefighters and members of the National Pensioners Convention joined together yesterday when having met outside the House of Lords where the many pensioners had gathered to protest before their lobby of parliament later in the day.  The firefighters were assured of the absolute support from pensioners in their struggle for fair pensions, the public showed their support by listening to the chants and taking numerous photographs,  we would defend any firefighter who might be claiming unfair dismissal in today’s climate of possible victimisation.   Mary Cooke.  Peterborough    from FBU website: Lobby your MP on firefighter pensions

 

NUT

November National Executive Report: Workload (Nov 6) – This afternoon, as agreed at the last Special Meeting of the NUT Executive, the Executive finalised the Union’s Workload Action Programme. Inevitably, on such a wide-ranging issue, there had been many suggestions put forward, and some contributors might still prefer this or that addition to the final version. However, overall, I was pleased that National Officers made a number of updates to the original draft and the Executive were unanimous in agreeing the revised Programme. Now we have to publicise it and fight to win it and make sure that politicians turn fine words into concrete action read more on the blog of NUT NEC member Martin Powell Davies

 

BFAWU / Fast Food Rights

November 21st – BFAWU lobby of Parliament to support private members bill by Ian Mearns MP on zero-hour contracts: assemble 12noon Old Palace Yard opposite House of Commons download leaflet

US fast food strikers coming to the UK 13-15 Nov: Come and hear their story! read more

BFAWU’s Foodworker magazine read here

Reports of Fast Food Rights protests on Youth Fight for Jobs website   and Fast Food Rights website

Please send details of any local actions to fastfoodrights@mail.com / ian.hodson@bfawu.org   see BFAWU video

 

 

Other news

Orgreave Truth and Justice Campaign: IPCC demo in London 14 November – 2nd anniversary of the South Yorkshire Police ‘s self-referral to the IPCC is 14/11 and we plan to have a 50 seater coach to take us to their head office in High Holborn, London , Friday 14/11 , picking up at the White Bear, Barnsley, 7.30 am and then the Showroom 8am, getting to London mid-day

 

South Yorkshire Freedom Riders Campaign To win Back Free Train Travel – The campaign to win back free train travel for older people in South Yorkshire is now well into its 9th month. In all that time we have sustained weekly activities at a bare minimum. Older and disabled people lost their rights to free train travel when the South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive axed them as aresult of Tory spending cuts.

Our campaign has been successful in winning back free train travel for disabled people and half fares for older people. We fight on to win back free travel. As Graham Kyte, chair of Barnsley Central Constituency Labour Party says, (and a former SDYPTE member), “The reason you have won some concessions is because you have campaigned.”

The last Freedom Ride we organised was on June 23rd which finished with pensioners and disabled people being kettled on Sheffield sstation and two of our number being arretsed. Since then we have concentrated on lobbying councillors.

The 2 Freedom Riders who were arrested at Sheffield Station on June 23rd appear in Sheffield Magistrates Court on Mon. Dec. 8th and Barnsley Trades Council has called a mass protest outside.from 8.45am onwards. (The trial is scheduled to last all week). UNITE the Union is paying for coaches to bring demonstrators through from Barnsley.

We hope to turn this into a large trade union solidarity demonstration which can show how popular the idea of free train travel for older people is in the wider movement, and how shocked people have been by seeing the clips of the arrests on Youtube.

We call on your union body/you as an individual to support our campaign and demonstration. Please bring your union banners.

Please forward this email as widely as possible. If you would like flyers please get in touch by email or phoning 07594857960.

See you on the 8th!

Dave Gibson (Barnsley Trades Council chair)

 

Blacklisting & Victimisation

Blacklist Support Group update – November 7th

  1. Crocodile Tears at CIPD conference

The GMB Crocodile Tears tour targeting the actual senior managers who were personally responsible for blacklisting continued this week:

Attached pix from the protest against Sheila Knight (EMCOR) in Reading and at the national conference of the CIPD (professional body for HR) in Manchester. Colin Trousdale, George Tapp and Art Against Blacklisting along with many others were representing.

 

Protest To Shame Blacklister Sandy Palmer

GMB held a protest demonstration in Ellesmere, in Shropshire on Monday 10th November to shame Sandy Palmer former General Manager of Carillion, who was named in Parliament, for his links to directly blacklisting 36 construction workers. Sandy Palmer is member of Ellesmere Rural Parish Council which met in Ellesmere Town Hall at 7pm read more

For more info contact: blacklisted@gmb.org.uk or http://www.gmb.org.uk/campaigns/blacklisting

 

  1. Police involvement in blacklisting

 

“The force can neither confirm nor deny it holds any information in relation to the activities of the Blacklist Support Group. To do so would undermine any current investigation by alerting those who maybe suspected of criminal activity, but it may also thwart any such investigation which is being managed as a covert operation. This in itself would disclose tactical options, undermining future operations, but also in this case potentially disclose personal data of individuals.”

Quote from Essex Police in response to FOI request by investigative journalist

Phil Chamberlain

 

 

Wed 12th Nov 6-8pm

Undercover police spies and blacklisting – public meeting

London Metropolitan University, Henry Thomas Lecture Theatre, 166-220 Holloway Road, N7 8DB

Speakers: Helen Steel, Merrick Badger, Dave Smith

all 3 spied on by undercover police – all 3 on the construction industry blacklist

http://campaignopposingpolicesurveillance.com/2014/10/25/cops-public-meeting/

 

Sat 15th Nov 11am start

Defend the Right to Protest Conference

Session on: Undercover cops and the secret state

speakers: Helen Steel, Rob Evans (Guardian), Jenny Jones (GLA), Merrick Badger & Dave Smith

SOAS, Thornhaugh Street, WC1H 0XG London

http://www.defendtherighttoprotest.org/national-conference/

 

 

  1. Blacklist Support Group on tour:

Thurs 13th Nov 7:30pm

Reel News night in London:

new videos on Blacklisting plus

Veterans for Peace in Northern Ireland

Ryans Bar

181 Stoke Newington Church Street

London N16 0UI

https://www.facebook.com/events/781480288564328/

 

Sat 15th Nov 1-4pm

Construction Rank & File national meeting

BSG speakers include: Frank Morris, Steve Kelly, Steve Acheson

Newcastle Labour Club, Newcastle Upon Tyne, NE14

https://www.facebook.com/events/741533262577799/

(all construction workers welcome)

 

  1. Atlanco Rimec

Atlanco Rimec is an employment agency accused of current anti-union blacklisting across Europe in the building industry and NHS.

This is an update on the story from RT (section starts at 13:30) http://www.rte.ie/player/gb/show/10341885/

 

  1. Solidarity:

UCATT crane drivers strike at HTC took place Friday 7th November

Pix attached

http://www.ucatt.org.uk/htc-crane-strike

 

 

Defend Petrit Mihaj

RMT rep was sacked by Sodexo who have refused to reinstate him despite him winning his Employment Tribunal.

11am Friday 14th Nov

Sodexo HQ

1 Southampton Way opposite Holborn Tube

Background info – http://m.rmtlondoncalling.org.uk/taxonomy/term/364

 

  1. Holiday Pay victory

Well done to Unite for their ground breaking holiday pay legal victory against the blacklisting firm AMEC

http://www.unitetheunion.org/news/unite-secures-ground-breaking-tribunal-victory-over-holiday-pay/

 

  1. John McDonnell MP has named Detective Chief Inspector Gordon Mills from the police spying unit NETCU as the senior officer who attended the illegal and secret Consulting Association blacklist meetings in 2008. The Observer newspaper are running a major story with several articles tomorrow (Sunday 9th Nov).

 

Blacklist Support Group have put in a complaint to the IPCC about police collusion with blacklisting of union activists via Imran Khan & Partners solicitors. The police have repeatedly denied any involvement. This is finally absolute proof and a major breakthrough for the campaign.

 

BSG demand a full public inquiry – stop the cover-up

 

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/nov/08/police-colluded-blacklist-construction-workers-consulting-association-union-activists

 

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

Blog: www.hazards.org/blacklistblog

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

 

 

International (also see Labourstart)

Turkey: Deva sacks workers for joining a union read more

 

Diary (see & use false economy)

November

15 National construction rank and file meeting – at Newcastle Labour Club

Unite the Resistance conference

11 Leazes Park Road, Newcastle.  NE1 4PF 1.00pm until 4.00pm

19 National student demonstration for free education and against austerity – assemble at Malet Street, London WC1E 7HZ 12noon

21 BFAWU lobby of Parliament

22 Yorkshire NSSN Conference – Cosmopolitan Hotel Lower Briggate, Leeds, LS1 4AE

 

December

1 Trade Unions Against TTIP – A Campaign for Trade Union Freedom meeting mobilising trade unionists for the campaign against TTIP, CETA, TISA and the new generation of “trade” treaties. 6pm Diskus Suite, Unite House, 128 Theobalds Road, London, WC1X 8TN https://www.facebook.com/events/728967470486256/?ref_dashboard_filter=upcoming

3 Leeds Youth Fight for Jobs branch meeting

 

 

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EMAIL mailto:info@shopstewards.net

 

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