October 5, 2016 in Bulletins
NSSN NHS bulletin
The NSSN has produced at short notice a NHS bulletin. We hope that our supporters will find it useful in campaigning against the threatened £20billion health cuts. We call on the TUC and the health unions to organise an emergency national demonstration to defend the NHS, which can give confidence for co-ordinated industrial action.
We’d like to thanks Unite Notts NHS EM/NG32 branch for donating towards the production of the bulletin. Email us via email@example.com to get copies
In an attempt to drive spending on the NHS back to pre-2000 spending levels (which would see one of the lowest spending levels in Europe) the Tory government’s latest plan has been to set up 44 footprint areas, in which commissioners and providers of services are expected to come together and draw up drastic cuts plans to balance the books of each local health economy by 2020.
These so-called Sustainability and Transformation Plans will take the gap in funding projected to develop by 2020 if there were no cuts and changes made and make this the target for savings. Many of these claimed gaps will run in to hundreds of millions and in some cases over a billion pounds.
This is despite the fact that there are literally billions held in reserves by Trusts and central government which at the end of the year simply go back into the treasury coffers.
44 leaders will be appointed by the CEO of NHS England (Simon Stevens – a former Blair advisor) who will have powers to ride roughshod over local people and health organisations wishes.
Whilst the full scale of the plans are yet to be revealed we already know there are plans to close or downsize many hospitals and A&E departments, a massive cut in hospital beds, restricting the rights of access to healthcare services and cuts in staffing.
There is clearly a mood to fight back against the attacks on the NHS. Already we have seen some mass local community campaigns develop in the likes of Huddersfield, Chorley and Grantham There are plans to try and bring these campaigns together.
Given the threat to jobs and services the trade unions can and must play a key role in the defence of the NHS and their members’ jobs.
This branch calls on the union’s national executive and national health committees to draw up an immediate campaign to fight STPs, up to and including industrial action where necessary.
Given the national scale of this threat, this branch calls on the union to initiate a national demonstration as soon as is practical, working with other unions and community health campaigns
Unison – Support the Teaching Assistants in Durham and Derby
Teaching Assistants (TAs) in Derby and Durham are in dispute over massive cuts to their wages. Derby TAs are continuing their action with a strike this Thursday, while in Durham, the majority have rejected the council’s offer and will now be balloted for industrial action. This is from the NSSN in the North East:
2015 witnessed Tory industrial treachery at its worst. Junior doctors of the BMA battled Jeremy Hunt’s plans to impose a contract which would significantly erode terms and conditions. To be expected from a Tory government. What few expected in 2016 was a Labour council co-opting Tory tactics.
Yet, on Thursday, the 9th of June, a group of predominantly women teaching assistants sat in the historic Redhills Miner’s Lodge (NSSN delivers message of solidarity at 13:30 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=twcR9cwhMyM), about to deliver their response to a Labour council seeking to sack and re-engage them, imposing a contract to slash earnings by 23%.
A floor vote called by the meeting’s chair, the late, great Davey Hopper, delivered a unanimous result: complete rejection of the Council’s attempted imposition.
The TAs are members of UNISON, Unite, ATL, and GMB. Despite this, no UNISON or GMB officials attended the Redhills meeting. Following the meeting, grassroots, member-led social media campaigning would result in an irreversible tide of publicity however, propelling the dispute to national prominence.
In the best traditions of industrial militancy, TAs agitated councillors, their unions and Labour officials. The campaign gained the attention of Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn. Attending the Durham miners’ gala, he delivered crucial backing to the TAs. Labour conference was dominated by coverage of the TAs. The TAs’ committee states they were in such demand that they had to hold court for media and supporters alike! The pressure has worked.
Members of UNISON (which has 60% of the 2700 TAs) and ATL have voted to reject the new contract. Unfortunately, members of GMB and Unite have accepted. UNISON’s results were as follows: of 1686 members, 1213 participated (72% turnout), with 946 voting to REJECT (78%), and 263 to ACCEPT (21.6%).
To contribute to the heroic Durham TAs’ fund, please visit: https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/CountyDurhamTeachingAssistants?utm_id=108&utm_term=9Q4zdDrP7
Durham TAs Facebook page
Derby Unison branch Facebook page
Trade union motions in support of Durham and Derby TAs, similar to those ratified by NSSN activists in North East Unite and GMB branches, should be sent to: firstname.lastname@example.org
NSSN urges all trade unionists in struggle to link and coordinate their strikes, for optimal impact, and maximum solidarity.
Sign petition to support the Kinsley School cleaners in Wakefield on indefinite strike since September 6th sign here
Southern Rail has been willing to spend big on two-page adverts in the press attacking the RMT as their members prepare for further action. They are threatening to sack and re-engage any guards who don’t accept the new terms. We call on all our supporters and affiliates to support the RMT
Southern Rail strikes re-start on October 11th – from 00.01 on Tuesday 11th October and 23.59 on Thursday 13th October and 00.01 on Tuesday 18th October and 23.59 on Thursday 20st October
RMT to ballot London Underground staff for action over jobs (3 Oct) – Underground is facing renewed industrial action on its stations, tube union RMT confirmed today. Station staff members of the Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers Unions (RMT) will be balloted for strike action and action short of strike action in an on-going battle over job numbers, the critical safety role of control rooms, forced displacement of staff, grading and a crisis resulting from London Undergrounds closure of ticket offices read more
Virgin East Coast strike solid this morning as management mount biggest scabbing operation in recent rail history (Oct 3) read more
Justice for cleaners: RMT day of action 13 October – DEMONSTRATE: Thursday, 13 October, 2016 -10am, City Hall (The Queen’s Walk, SE1 2AA, London Bridge Tube), and 3pm, Interserve HQ (1-3 College Hill, EC4R 2RA, Cannon Street Tube). Bring flags, banners, and noisemakers. Every day, more than 3,000 cleaning workers clean stations, depots, trains, and other facilities to ensure London Underground can run read more
This is a video of the NSSN TUC Congress Rally – Tories Out! Keep Corbyn!
Get your trade union branch or trades council to affiliate to the NSSN – it only costs £50. Already affiliated? Please think about renewing it. Also, many of our supporters pay a few pounds a month. You can set up a similar standing order to ‘National Shop Stewards Network’, HSBC – sort code 40-06-41, account number 90143790. Our address is NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE. Affiliation letter is below
Download the ‘Join the NSSN’ leaflet here
And if you can, come to one of our regional Conferences. If there is not one in your area, get in touch to either assist in organising or have a speaker at one of your meetings or events. Contact Rob or Linda on email@example.com
Dublin Bus Strike Suspended (27 Sept) – Responding to news that the Ireland’s Workplace Relations Committee have told Dublin Bus Company to come up with a new pay deal for the company’s bus workers read more Facebook Group
Sign the petition to end privatisation at the Imperial War Museums sign here
Unite targets William Hill in day of action over attack on workers’ pay (5 Oct) – Unite will be protesting outside bookmaker William Hill’s shops in London, Birkenhead, Liverpool, Manchester, Leeds, Sheffield, Birmingham, Gloucester and Southampton on Friday 7 October, as part of a nationwide day of action against the gambling giant’s plans to slash shop managers’ pay by £6,000 a year on average read more
Johnson Matthey chemical workers to work-to-rule in dispute over imposed changes to working conditions (4 Oct) – Unite members working for Johnson Matthey in Clitheroe, Lancashire, an international leading speciality chemicals company, are to take industrial action in a dispute over imposed changes to their terms and conditions of employment read more
Ipswich bus drivers to strike in low pay dispute on 10 October (3 Oct) – About 140 Ipswich bus drivers will be striking for 24-hours next Monday (10 October) in a low pay dispute. Unite, the country’s largest union, said that the strike centred on raising the pay for the lower paid third of the drivers working for borough council-owned Ipswich Buses. The strike will start at 04.55 on 10 October read more
Double blow for Bromley council over library sell-off plans (3 Oct) – council has been dealt a double blow to its plans to sell-off the borough’s treasured libraries. Bexley council has informed Bromley council that it will no longer be looking to privatise its libraries in the joint tendering process with Bromley and will instead “take the library forward through continued in-house management.” Earlier this month Bromley Community Link the preferred bidder for the volunteer library contract decided to withdraw from the tender process read more
Menzies newspaper delivery dispute settled as staff vote to accept improved offer (30 Sept) – pay dispute at Menzies Distribution, which had threatened deliveries to newsagents across the UK, has been settled after workers voted to accept an improved offer read more
GMB Ballots Cheshire Firefighters Over Job Losses And Terms And Conditions (Oct 4) – GMB Ballots Cheshire Firefighters Over Job Losses And Terms And Conditions. Using the threat of redundancy to lower the terms and conditions for diligent workers like these is dishonest, unfair and shows complete contempt for workforce says GMB. It has commenced a ballot of members working for Babcock fire and critical services over job losses and cuts to terms and conditions closing on Monday 17 October read more
Sheffield bin workers 24-hour strike action over pay dispute read more
Read the latest issue of The Teacher magazine here
Solving the workload crisis: winning an enforceable limit on teachers’ weekly working hours (2 Oct) – There are many threats to teachers and education that need to be urgently combated – not least funding cuts and the educational damage being done by SATs, selection and academisation. However, if there’s one issue that most concerns teachers whenever I speak at school or Division meetings, it’s teacher workload read more
Reinstate Kumaran Bose – sacked by Samworths! The NSSN is supporting the BFAWU’s campaign in support of Kumaran Bose who was dismissed for speaking out and for organising a union in his workplace read more Facebook group
Fire service in Greater Manchester withdraws proposals to sack its entire workforce (27 Sept) – The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has welcomed Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service’s (GMFRS) announcement today that it is not now planning to sack its 1250 strong firefighter workforce. The service withdrew its plans to issue Section 188 notices that would have terminated the firefighters’ contracts of employment – only those who agreed to the new 12 hour shift patterns would have been re-employed read more
Staff vote for strike action at Hull College (30 Sept) – Members of UCU at Hull College have voted in support of strike action over planned redundancies. More than eight in ten members (86%) who voted backed strike action, while 96% voted in favour of action short of a strike. The branch will meet on Monday (3 October) to discuss next steps read more
London Met strike photos from September 29th read more about the dispute against victimisation and cuts
Reinstate Clive Walder – Clive Walder, a longstanding leading rep in the CWU was sacked last November after 38 years of service with British Telecom. Clive is chair of the CWU Birmingham, Black Country & Worcester branch. Last week, his Employment Tribunal was dismissed on a technicality after a claim by BT, denying Clive the right of a fair hearing. This is outrageous.
Clive worked in a BT call centre and was dismissed after an aggressive customer reported him to management just 33 seconds into a phone call. The decision was made without taking stress into account despite the local CWU branch reporting that 7% of staff at the call centre leave their jobs each month, some walking out mid shift. Management took the decision without consulting any medical advice or taking into account any mitigation.
Clive is a NSSN steering committee member and we will be supporting the campaign protesting the sacking and campaigning for his reinstatement.
Contact Clive to send messages of support and invite him to your union branch, shop stewards committee, trades council etc – firstname.lastname@example.org 07771931185
Nationalise Tata – support the Steelworkers
For latest developments, follow Facebook group
Brixton Ritzy workers to strike on Friday 7 October from 1pm – This Friday we are on strike again, and we’re heading to Central London! Join us in Leicester Square at 5pm, where we’ll be rallying at the BFI London Film Festival. We’re calling on the BFI to break ties with Picturehouse until they pay us enough to live on: the London Living Wage! We will be walking out at 1pm in Brixton, and visiting a number of LFF events – see here for a full schedule of the day. Join for any or all of them! https://www.facebook.com/RitzyLivingWage/
Newsquest south strike stalls for talks (4 Oct) – A 14-day strike by journalists working on newspapers owned by Newsquest in south London has been postponed as management agreed to talks with ACAS, the arbitration service. The chapel had voted to take action from Thursday 8 October following company plans to put nearly all the newsroom staff at risk of redundancy. This would leave 12 reporters, one content editor and three sub-editors to produce 11 newspapers and eight associated websites read more
Protest at Crossrail (29 Sept) – UCATT held a demonstration outside the Crossrail tunnel entrance this morning (Thursday 29th September). The protest is part of a deeper industrial dispute concerning the treatment of the 1,000 strong workforce on the site. Worker report that severe failures of the finger print recognition system is frequently resulting in them not being paid correctly with pay for entire shifts not being processed. The welfare facilities on this flagship 21st century project are also appalling. Workers have to walk up to two miles to use a toilet and there is also a severe lack of canteen space. Further problems are also emerging on the project. UCATT have been attempting to reoslve the issues with the contractors ATC but have been barred from accessing the site read more
BMA Junior Doctors
BURSARY OR BUST: Continuing the fight to save NHS bursaries https://www.facebook.com/NHSbursarycutsforum/
Foster Carers vote to Unionise! Read more
United Voices of the World
John Lewis Protest: bring the Cleaners into the partnership! – SAVE THE DATE: 5 NOVEMBER 2-5pm (John Lewis, Oxford Street) https://www.facebook.com/events/1765354393752143/
Butterfields Won’t Budge – Butterfields tenants in Waltham Forest in East London have been fighting eviction since January 2016. They have put up spirited resistance. But now the new landlords are bringing possession summonses. The courts are stacked against tenants in every way. Tenants have already raised funds with a comedy night, donations from various organisations, trade unions and individuals, and through crowdfunding. But the courts are another matter. The families urgently need your help to raise £15,000.
If we can’t raise money then their campaign will move straight to facing bailiffs. Can you and your organisation make a donation towards our legal challenge?
To send a message of support please contact the TRA secretary – email@example.com
To donate contact the TRA treasurer – firstname.lastname@example.org
Also contact Waltham Forest Trade Union Council via email@example.com or ring 07952 283 558
Get the latest information on the Facebook page – Butterfields Won’t Budge
Axe the Housing Act – Build the Housing Summit
Saturday 22 October 2016 11.30am @ NUT HQ, Hamilton House
Workshops, Discussions and planning of future actions to resist the vicious, destructive Housing and Planning act!
The Act attacks existing tenants and will push more into private renting without rights or rent controls. It will not come into full force until after April 2017 and this allows us a little time to build on nation wide consensus against it. A big and growing grassroots movement is determined to resist and defeat it. Trade unions and councils have a key part to play to stop this Act
Blacklisting & Victimisation
Buy the book ‘Blacklisted: The Secret War between Big Business and Union Activists’ Author: Dave Smith and Phil Chamberlain. Blacklisted tells the controversial story of the illegal strategies that transnational construction companies used to keep union activists away from work. See the official trailer from ReelNews
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)
Donate to ReelNews – http://reelnews.co.uk/donationssubscriptions/
Spain: The strike called by the Sindicato de Estudiantes (SE) in Spain on 26th of October has now won important support and it is set to be a big protest. All of the teaching and education unions in Madrid will now be joining the strike and in Andalucía the largest teachers union is also joining the strike. Others are likely to join it as well. Please send messages of support as soon as possible as the SE want to use them prior to the strike.
The strike is called in opposition to a change in the education system proposed by the PP government. A new extra examination system is being introduced – called “revalidations”. This is a new layer of exams which it is compulsory to take after the normal exams have been sat. Even if the first set of exams are passed if the second is failed then the student is expelled from the education system. It is aimed at limiting access to higher education. It is modelled on the exam system which existed under the Franco dictatorship and is clearly seen at attacking access to higher education by working class youth.
The strike is also called against the PP government cuts in education and it’s attacks on the provision of education in Catalán in Catalonia.
Please send all solidarity messages, resolutions, videos and reports of pickets to the following e/mail addresses:
Ana García, General Secretary of the SE at firstname.lastname@example.org
And secretaria de Organización del SE at email@example.com
Turkey: Sign petition – Hayatin Sesi TV has been blacked out… we won’t be silenced or toe the line! Sign here
Turkey: Watch an interview with Asli Erdogan, a renowned novelist, columnist, and human rights activist in Turkey. Erdogan was detained on August 17 under the absurd pretext of advocating terrorism and remains imprisoned today watch here
PepsiCo responds to formation of new union in Pakistan by attacking rights read more
Leading fast food chain in Indonesia escalates repression against workers demanding basic rights read more
USA: Support Minnesota nurses strike – Almost 5,000 members of the Minnesota Nurses Association (MNA) who are registered nurses at Allina Health in Minnesota, USA have been on strike since September 5th, fighting for better working conditions, including more staff, security, and better violence prevention training as it is all too common for nurses to be assaulted by patients and visitors. Finally the employer’s main goal is to take away our good insurance benefits, leaving us with worse options, which save the employer (who is doing well financially) a lot of money. In some cases decreasing the value of a nurse’s total compensation package (wages + benefits) by as much as 25%.
While Allina Health is formally a “not-for-profit” operation its highly paid management are behaving in the same threatening way that private sector employers do, and takes over smaller hospitals and attempts to grow its market share in a similar way as a for-profit hospital company. As of the beginning of October, striking nurses lost their health insurance coverage, as it is only a benefit offered by some employers in the US. After another three long days of negotiations at the end of September, on October 3rd the nurses voted on another offer from Allina, which they again overwhelmingly rejected and decided to continue to stay out on strike and fight for a better offer.
Diary (see & use false economy)
9 Battle of Cable St 80th anniversary 12noon-5pm Location: Altab Ali Park, London E1 read more
5 National libraries, museums and galleries demonstration https://www.facebook.com/events/282708008768589/
19 NUS/UCU United for Education national demonstration in London read more
PHONE 07952 283 558
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE