March 28, 2017 in Bulletins
The PCS is organising protests around the country this Friday March 31st on the last payday before the new financial year begins.
“The payday protests, which are happening ahead of the publication of the Treasury’s pay guidance for 2017, are your chance to drive home our message that our pay has been eroded for far too long and it’s time to drop the 1% cap and negotiate increases in our pay.
Our payday protests will send a powerful message to government that we need and deserve a decent pay rise and will back up our national pay claim to the Cabinet Office minister Ben Gummer and the head of the civil service Jeremy Heywood.
Take-home pay for PCS members in the civil service and related bodies has been driven down by the 1% pay cap, by changes to the pension scheme and by increases to National Insurance contributions, causing real hardship. We say, it’s time to put this right and negotiate a real pay increase. You can also keep up the pressure by emailing Treasury minister David Gauke.”
All workers have seen their wages cut in real terms since the financial crisis hit 10 years ago. In some areas public sector workers are now in the ninth year of a pay freeze. While the rich have got richer, it has been a lost decade for workers and their families. As one PCS member has said: “There is too much month left at the end of the money”.
At last September’s TUC Congress, the PCS motion calling for co-ordinated action on pay was passed. These protests are an ideal opportunity to the lay the basis for it. Find out where the PCS protests are and join them. Bring along your union and trades council banners and flags. Fight together for a pay rise!
There is a protest at 1pm outside the Treasury. Details of this and the other events are here.
More PCS news
Welfare impact concerns over DWP office closures ahead of today’s lobby of Parliament – Ahead of PCS’ lobby of parliament on Tuesday (28 March) opposing DWP office closures, MPs, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and others have been highlighting the negative impact that these closures will have on staff, users and the local community. Find out how you can join the lobby. PCS has arranged the speaker meeting and lobby as part of our campaign to oppose office closures to over 100 DWP offices, including 74 jobcentres, representing more than 10% of the total. This will lead to at least 750 job losses. DWP plans to replace staff they make redundant with new staff, at further cost to the taxpayer. The lobby will start with a speaker meeting in parliament at 1pm followed by a lobby from 2-4 pm in committee room 10, Houses of Parliament (St Stephen’s Gate Entrance) Westminster, London, SW1A 0AA read more
Trade Union Act came into force on March 1st – TUC call a special conference
The Tories have confirmed that their anti-union laws, incorporated in the Trade Union Act, including new undemocratic industrial action ballot thresholds will come into force on March 1st. The NSSN calls on the TUC to implement the policy passed at last September’s TUC Congress which was moved by the RMT which includes:
“Congress believes the General Council needs to convene an urgent conference of affiliates to provide a practical forum, including workshops, as to how to best coordinate our legal and industrial response to the Act in line with policy already set by Congress.”
and an amendment from the FBU:
“Congress should discuss all options for challenging the new legislation. This should include stepping up the campaign to scrap the Act and other anti-union legislation as well as the practical steps to be taken to support any unions and groups of workers threatened by this anti-worker legislation.”
Early notice – the 11th annual NSSN Conference will be on Saturday July 1st 2017 from 11am in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL. It is open to all trade union and anti-cuts campaigners Facebook event
This is a video of the NSSN TUC Congress Rally on 11 September – 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 firstname.lastname@example.org
RMT on South West Trains franchise announcement (27 March) – General Secretary Mick Cash said; “Once again the Government have refused to consider the public sector option for a major rail franchise and instead it’s a foreign state operator, in this case the Chinese state, which is set to make a killing at the British taxpayers expense. “The nonsense is that with the Government triggering Article 50 this week they would be free to ignore EU rail directives that slam a block on public ownership…” read more
Demo to defend the London Bridge 3: April 3rd 0800 London Bridge Station – London Underground senior managers are seeking to lie and mislead the public over the events surrounding the punitive disciplinary sanctions handed down to the London Bridge 3. Their colleague, who was pregnant, was assaulted by a fare evader on November 16 read more
Take Magnox nuclear plants’ ‘clean up’ back into public control, says Unite (27 March) – The ‘cleaning up’ of Britain’s 12 Magnox nuclear reactors should be taken back into public control, following today’s (Monday 27 March) announcement of the termination of the contract with Cavendish Fluor Partnership (CFP) to carry out this work. The call came from Unite, the country’s largest union, as the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) said it was ending its 14-year contract with CFP, awarded in 2014, to decommission the 12 redundant Magnox sites read more
Campaign to save Bromley’s libraries from privatisation ramps up with week-long strike by library staff – The Bromley public has been asked ‘to rise up and make their voice heard’, otherwise the borough’s 14 libraries will be privatised, with expected severe cutbacks in services. The call to rollback the tide of local government privatisation has come from Unite which is battling to keep Bromley’s libraries, serving a 300,000-strong population, being run by the council. So far, Unite’s campaign has seen construction firm Carillion and a scheme run by volunteers withdraw from the bidding process, leaving only one private bidder with its hat in the ring. Unite understands that is Greenwich Leisure Limited. To give the campaign added impetus, Unite’s library members, who number about 60, will be striking for a week from 00.01 on Saturday 1 April until 23.59 on Saturday 8 April. The union is also organising a petition to collect the more than 500 signatures needed to force the council to debate the issue read more
Support Fujitsu workers after 4th day of national strike – Unite members working for the IT giant Fujitsu at sites across the UK are on strike today (Monday 27 March) over plans to axe one in five jobs and cuts to pensions as they battle to gain union recognition. Today sees the fourth day of strike action involving workers at sites in Basingstoke, Belfast, Birmingham, Bracknell, Crewe, Edinburgh, London, Manchester, Stevenage, Wakefield and Warrington. Accusing Fujitsu of keeping workers in the dark, Unite called on the company to enter meaningful negotiations and share its business case for axing and offshoring 1,800 jobs. Unite also urged the firm to drop an investigation into employee representatives for setting up a job pairing scheme aimed at reducing the number of compulsory redundancies read more Send a message of support to email@example.com or Unite the Union, Fujitsu MAN34, Central Park, Northampton Road, Manchester, M40 5BP
Donations payable to “Manchester IT Workers Group” can be sent c/o John Wood, 50 Brooklyn Street, Crewe, CW2 7JF. Or transfer online to Account: 00980539, Sort Code: 30-91-48 and email firstname.lastname@example.org with details. Follow and promote the campaign on social media using #FujitsuFightback. www.facebook.com/uniteatfujitsu www.twitter.com/unitefujitsu picket line details
Construction chaos looms after crane drivers reject pay offer (24 March) – Unite, the main construction union, is warning that a summer of chaos on construction sites is looming after tower crane drivers for HTC Wolffkran unanimously rejected a pay offer. Over 50 crane drivers with the company, which is the largest tower crane operator in the UK, unanimously rejected a ‘derisory’ three per cent pay offer at a mass meeting on Wednesday 21 March. Unite will now conduct a consultative ballot of their entire membership and then expect to begin a full industrial action ballot in early summer, unless the company significantly improves its pay offer read more
Mixed Fleet cabin crew re-ballot: keep supporting the workers! – Send messages of support and donations (make cheques out to Unite the Union and write ‘Mixed Fleet Hardship Fund’ on the back) to: Unite the Union, Ron Todd House, 33-37 Moreland Street, London EC1V 8BB. Tweet support to @MFUnite
Derby Teaching Assistants have suspended their indefinite strike against 23% pay cuts to consider a new offer from the council. Their colleagues in Durham who have also been taking action against similar attacks marched last Saturday
Donate to Derby hardship fund here
Derby Unison branch Facebook page here
Donate to the Durham TAs’ fund here
Durham TAs Facebook page here
Support the Kinsley School cleaners in Wakefield on indefinite strike since September 6th – Facebook Group. Donate to strike fund – send to Wakefield Unison, 18 Gills Yard, Wakefield WF1 3BZ
As all out strike at Bus Eireann enters its third day where is Ireland’s Transport Minister? (27 March) – TSSA staff members at Bus Eireann are on picket lines across Ireland this morning as the all-out strike ar Bus Eireann enters its third day read more
FBU proud of its members who responded to the ‘disgusting’ Westminster attack (23 March) – The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) is very proud of the firefighters who turned out yesterday to aid the rescue of victims of the Westminster terrorist attack. More than 25 London firefighters were at the scene yesterday following the 2.40pm attack, having been called to two ‘road traffic accidents’ at 2.45. Firefighters rescued a person from the Thames and brought them to Tower Pier, and were still helping victims at 6pm read more
GMB call on East Kent Hospital Trust to ensure that the lowest paid staff receive the agreed pay rise (22 Mar) – GMB, the union for all NHS Healthcare Professional and Auxiliary staff, call on East Kent Hospital University NHS foundation Trust CEO Matthew Kershaw to ensure that the private profiteer SERCO honour the promise to implement the latest NHS pay award for the lowest paid staff, cease outsourcing facilities and remove SERCO from the contract read more
Doncaster postal workers walk out (24 March) – “Yesterday we were under their spell, today they’re under ours. We’ve taken the power back”. That’s how James, one of the Doncaster CWU union reps, described the effect of the unofficial walk-out by 300 postal workers from the Doncaster Royal Mail Delivery Centre today. The unofficial strike (so much for the Tories’ new anti-union laws) was against management bullying which has got even worse recently. The final straw was when a colleague with 28 years’ service, who is off work sick with stress, was sacked over the phone: “Have you got a pen and paper ready because I’m finishing you and letting you know how much you’ll get under ill health retirement. This is your last day of service”. 240 postal delivery staff walked out this morning and were joined later by up to 70 distribution and collection staff. More than one worker said that they had seen grown men cry as a result of management bullying and this was the third unwarranted dismissal recently read more
The Fast Food Rights campaign are calling for ‘Fight for £10 – May Day Pay Day’ marches this May Day – contact Gareth Lane Gareth.Lane@BFAWU.org for info
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 BFAWU Statement On Samworth Brothers’ Sacking Of Kumaran Bose
Support the reinstatement of London Met union reps: Mark Campbell and David Hardman https://uculondonmet.wordpress.com/
EIS Opens FE Strike Ballot And Urges Colleges To Honour Pay Agreement (24 March) – The EIS has issued statutory industrial action ballot papers to members of its Further Education Lecturers’ Association (EIS-FELA) in the latest step of an ongoing dispute with colleges over the non-delivery of a 2016 agreement on lecturers’ pay and conditions read more
Forest Hill School in Lewisham to strike again Wednesday and Thursday this week against cuts read more and watch strike protest video and photos video interview with parent
This Friday 31 March members at the Ritzy, Hackney Picturehouse and Picturehouse Central will all stage a further strike
Creatives back call for Picturehouse living wage boycott (23 Mar) – Low paid workers fighting for the Living Wage at Picturehouse cinemas have received a great boost to their campaign. Their call for a boycott of the Picturehouse circuit, owned by Cineworld, has won the backing of leading creatives at home and abroad. US actor and activist, Susan Sarandon and actor and theatre director Sir Mark Rylance, are just two stellar names on a list of influential, respected and much loved creators calling on Cineworld to pay their staff the Living Wage. Last Saturday (18 March 2017) BECTU members at the Duke of York’s in Brighton staged their first ever strike in support of the campaign. Staff at five venues – the Brixton Ritzy, and Picturehouses in Hackney, Central London, Crouch End and Brighton – are now party to a campaign of industrial action, determined to rouse Cineworld management from their stupor, as the strikes continue and the company’s own customers post on social media pledging not to renew their memberships until there is agreement to pay the Living Wage read more
United Voices of the World union (UVW)
Support the LSE cleaners who went on strike on March 15-16 for equality and dignity – UVW members who are cleaners at the London School of Economics (LSE) went on strike last week after a 100% yes vote for strike action read more. Support LSE academic Lisa McKenzie – On 15th March 2017 as Justice for LSE Cleaners supporters were leaving the foyer to the offices of Noonan and LSE directors at 1 Kingsway after a successful protest in support of striking LSE cleaners, the police assaulted and arrested LSE academic Lisa McKenzie, on alleged grounds of assault and bundled her into a waiting police van. No protesters saw any evidence of assault by McKenzie watch video of protest and Lisa’s arrest here
Please consider making a donation to LSE cleaners’ strike fund – http://www.uvwunion.org.uk/justiceforlsecleaners/
Come and #RideWithUs in Brighton on April 1st! It’s a spontaneous celebration of Deliveroo’s low wages and poor conditions, riding around Brighton to the most popular restaurants.
Brighton Deliveroo riders demand:
1) A freeze in recruitment
2) £5 per drop
3) No victimisation
4) A guarantee of the living wage per hour
Critical Mass Brighton April 1st – Deliveroo RideWithUs Facebook Event
International Workers Memorial Day (April 28) and May Day are coming up over the next weeks – send us your event and we’ll publicise it. Here are events in London, South and East of England (SERTUC)
Support the Irish anti-water charge protestors who are facing trial for a protest in Jobstown. Join the protest outside the Irish Embassy in London on the first day of the trial on Monday April 24th at 2pm – 7 Grosvenor Pl, Belgravia SW1X 7HR
Please send messages of protest: https://sites.google.com/view/jobstownnotguilty/ https://www.facebook.com/Jobstown-Not-Guilty-1056889327677242/
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.
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)
Demonstration at Spycops Inquiry Hearing – 9am-10am April 5th Royal Courts of Justice, Strand London, WC2A 2LL
It is over six years since the undercover policing scandal broke, creating shock that the police could commit such abuses against social, animal, and environmental justice campaigners in our country. Public outrage at the scandals around undercover policing led to the Public Inquiry into Undercover Policing. Two years in, it is still in its preliminary stages, beset by police delaying tactics, and applications for secrecy. The police have so far avoided giving any information about their abusive activities. People who have had their lives turned upside down by infiltration are no nearer to knowing the truth. We are no nearer to knowing the extent of the ongoing abuse of our democracy. The police have asked for yet more delays and the Inquiry are having a hearing to take opinions and make a ruling. It is a crunch time for the Inquiry – will it acquiesce to the police’s dodging of accountability or will it at last prise open the lid and reveal the truth? Everything we know about Spycops has come from the activists, journalists and whistleblowers, the state has given us nothing read more
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Indonesia: Coca-Cola’s bottler determined to stifle independent unions read more
Djibouti: Free jailed teacher trade union leaders read more
1 11th annual NSSN Conference 11am in Conway Hall, 25 Red Lion Square, London WC1R 4RL
PHONE 07952 283 558
TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts
ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE