NSSN 533: Workers fight back against the bosses’ offensive

May 6, 2021 in Bulletins

As the polls open on election day, we continue to report on the increasing number of disputes.  Workers are fighting back against the offensive of the Tories and employers such as their pay freezes and brutal ‘fire and rehire’ attacks. Also, union reps are being targeted, as usual so that the bosses can look to weaken the union to then try and attack the whole workforce.

Unite Goodlord strike

Unite Goodlord strike

But the fight back against these attacks and in many cases victories, show that if workers are organised and unions give a lead, the bosses can be forced back.

Read the reports in our weekly bulletin and send solidarity and support.

Unite Go North West strike

Unite Go North West strike (photo courtesy of Unite North West)

 

Come to NSSN Conference 2021: 11am Sunday 20th June online via Zoom Facebook event

 

Stop victimisation of union reps

Donate to the reinstatement campaign of Declan Clune RMT bus driver in Southampton (on behalf of Declan Clune and all RMT Southampton District Bus and Coach Branch members). Email message of support: [email protected]

RMT to ballot for action over victimisation and sacking of leading bus activist (25 Mar)

Support Gary Carney RMT rep on London Underground  read more

Defend Adrian Mitchell RMT driver on London Underground

Donate to solidarity campaign of Moe Muhsin Manir Unite bus rep   Email messages of support to Moe: [email protected]

Support Kirstie Paton Greenwich NEU

Sign petition: Overturn Final written warning for John Boken (NEU Representative at Shrewsbury Colleges Group)

Stop victimisation of NEU rep Louise Lewiswatch Reel News video: Huddersfield teachers strike to defend Louise Lewis

Support Leaways School strike in Hackney – reinstate sacked NEU rep (see NEU below) 

Solidarity with NEU reps Tracy McGuire and Keiran Mahon

Woolwich Ferry workers overwhelmingly vote to strike over victimised rep (30 Apr) – Workers operating the Woolwich Ferry, now run by Transport for London (TfL), will strike for eight days in May and June over the victimisation of a union rep, Unite the union announced today (Friday 30 April). Unite’s 57 members have voted by an overwhelming 97 per cent for strike action which will take place on 14, 24, 28 May and 1, 4, 7, 11, 21 June. The ferry has been so dogged by poor employment relations in recent years – leading to TfL taking over its operation from the discredited Briggs Marine Contractors Ltd – that the latest episode has been dubbed the ‘Groundhog Day’ dispute read more

St Mungos management escalate dispute by suspending Unite rep

Watch Reel News video: Victimised union reps: Act like it’s you and fight back

 

Fight Tory 1% NHS Pay Insult

For more information: Nurses and Midwives say NO! to Public Sector pay inequality, Keep Our NHS Public, Health Campaigns Together (read April’s HCT bulletin)

Watch Reel News video – NEU: Solidarity with NHS pay campaign

 

 

The Sparks force bosses back de-skilling at Hinkley Point but struggle continues

Rank and file construction electricians have launched a struggle against what they see as multi-skilling by bosses at the massive site Hinkley Point to build the nuclear power station, estimated to cost £22.5 billion.

It is reported that an agreement to employ about 500 electrical apprentices had been reneged on and instead a training course for ‘Electrical Support Operatives’ (ESO) is being put on. This would mean lower-paid unskilled workers being employed instead of skilled electricians.

The campaign has already seen protests in London, Manchester, Liverpool and Newcastle, Scotland and Wales and recently there was the first demonstration at Hinkley. Last week, workers walked off the NG Baileys job at Whitby Hospital in North Yorkshire and Sparks blockaded a site in Cardiff. Unite now report that EDF have backed off at Hinkley and Balfours are also moving away from the ESO, which if conformed represents a great victory. But the fight goes on, particularly targeting NG Baileys until de-skilling is totally off the agenda.

Solidarity to the Sparks!

See new Reel News video: Sparks occupy Land Securities offices over deskilling

See Reel News video: Sparks invade Balfour Beatty job over deskilling

See Reel News video of recent protest at Hinkley Point

Read latest Siteworker bulletins of the Rank & File

For details of Sparks protests, follow NO TO ESO (UNSKILLED LABOUR) Facebook page

Sign petition: Permanently BAN the practice or notion of de-skilling professional trades!

 

 

Support the NSSN

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. Feel free to use this affiliation letter

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]

Watch the NSSN pre-TUC Rally from last September and follow us on twitter via @NSSN_AntiCuts and Facebook

 

 

The NSSN is continuing to report on how workers are organising during the coronavirus pandemic

The NSSN is opening up our weekly email bulletin, website and social media platforms of Facebook and twitter to provide a public forum for workers during the Coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis. We want to be a place where we can all share queries and experiences that workers are facing in their workplaces. These include reports of action taken by workers to defend themselves from their employers.

You can read about many of these actions in our weekly bulletin and out social media groups, especially our Facebook group: NSSN – defend workers’ rights under Coronavirus.

You can also send the NSSN your reports and queries via our website, twitter – @NSSN_AntiCuts and email – [email protected]

We welcome the information being sent to union members concerning the spread of coronavirus, including the Accord, Advance, AEP, AFA-CWA, ASLEF, BDA, BECTU Sector of Prospect, BFAWU, BOS-TU, College of Podiatry, Community, CSP, EIS, Equity, FBU, FDA, GMB, HCSA, MU, NAHT, NASUWT, National Society for Education in Art and Design (NSEAD), Nautilus International, NEU, NGSU, NUJ, PFA, Prospect, RCM, SoR, TSSA, TUC, UCU, UNISON, Unite, URTU, USDAW, WGGB and the RCN

But it is absolutely vital that unions retain their ability to organise and act independently in defence of their members and workers generally. This includes the right of unions to take industrial action. We are already aware of workers being forced to take unofficial action on health and safety grounds. We also believe that unions should have oversight of any government bans on protests and picketing. This is the same Tory government that tabled more new anti-union laws in December’s Queens Speech last December and cannot be trusted and is now attacking the right to protest through its Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill.

We believe that it is essential that workers are protected during this worrying period and are not impacted, whether in terms of their safety as well as their pay and employment rights. The Tory government have announced measures that include some workers receiving 80% of their wages. This furlough scheme was due to end but has now been extended because of the 2nd lockdown.

However, we believe that no worker should pay the price for any spread of the virus. We say: work or full pay. Any worker who is required not to attend work or is unable to do so because of COVID, childcare or transport closures should receive full pay and not be forced to take annual leave. But unions have to remain vigilant that any government payments actually happen and also covers all workers, including those in precarious employment such as zero-hour contracts and in the gig economy.

We have drafted this model motion which we’ve made into a bulletin that can be downloaded and printed off to be distributed. Feel free to use in your union and trades council, in totality or partially to highlight the issues that need to be addressed.

Keep an eye out for other Facebook and social media groups and pages that are being created. The Coronavirus Support Group for Workers has been set up on Facebook and is a useful forum and you can catch up on disputes at Strike Map UK

 

 

Union News

RMT

RMT raises concerns over HSE response to serious offshore incident near Shetland (5 May) – RMT today responded with concern to the Health and Safety Executive’s response to a serious safety incident in the offshore decommissioning sector. In 2020, a video was circulated of an accident that occurred during decommissioning work carried out by the contractor, Ocean Kinetics on the Buchan Alpha rig in waters off Shetland. A thousand tonne structure suddenly fell several feet, seriously endangering the safety of Ocean Kinetics and all other staff on the job. The Health and Safety Executive’s investigation into this incident found that Ocean Kinetics’ de-ballasting of the structure broke the law, specifically the Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 and the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2015. However, in an unusual step following an investigation which established that health and safety laws had been broken and caused this incident, the HSE has only of issued Ocean Kinetics with a “Notice of Contravention” and a fine for an undisclosed amount read more

RMT warns of an impending bus cuts crisis (4 May) – RMT warns of an impending bus cuts crisis as its survey of Local Councillors across England reveals that nearly 70% think their Council will be forced to cut funding for local bus services. A survey by Bus Union RMT of cross-party local councillors across the country has revealed that a cuts disaster looms for Britain’s bus network unless the Government takes far more radical action than is set out in its National Bus Strategy read more

Ticket examiners join Conductors in ScotRail pay justice fight (2 May) – Ticket examiners and conductors solidly supporting strike action today in Scotrail fight for pay justice and equality. RAIL UNION RMT said today that strike action involving ScotRail conductors and ticket examiners in two separate disputes over the same issue of equality between grades in payments for rest day working is being solidly supported right across the franchise read more

RMT to strike on polling day on London Underground over victimisation and sacking of trade union rep Gary Carney (30 Apr) – TUBE UNION RMT confirmed today that it has called a strike on the Central Line on May 6th over the victimisation and sacking of long-standing activist Gary Carney. Members have already delivered a solid yes vote for strike action in this dispute over the unjustified dismissal of Brother Carney, an RMT Representative who has twenty-years unblemished service with the company…The National Executive Committee has considered this matter and taken the decision to call on all Train Operators, Night Tube Train Operators and Instructor Operators at Leytonstone, Loughton, West Ruislip & White City Traincrew Depots to take strike action by not booking on for any shifts that commence between 21:00 hours on Wednesday 5th May 2021 and 20:59 hours on Thursday 6th May 2021 read more

Ticket examiners join ScotRail conductors in strike action this Sunday in fight for pay justice and equality (30 Apr) – RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that strike action involving ScotRail conductors and ticket examiners in two separate disputes over the same issue of equality between grades in payments for rest day working goes ahead on Sunday as planned. The union has also confirmed that it will shortly begin balloting engineering grades over the same issue of workplace justice on enhanced payments:-

  • 00.01 hours until 23.59 hours on Sunday 2nd May 2021 read more

Merseyrail accused of ‘pandemic profiteering’ as shareholders get £3 million dividend (29 Apr) – Merseyrail accused of ‘pandemic profiteering’ as shareholders get £3 million dividend while staff face a pay freeze and cleaners are denied Living Wage and sick pay. Merseyrail bosses paid the shareholders of Serco and Dutch state subsidiary Abellio a £3 million dividend in March 2020 while the heroic staff who kept services running are expected to endure a 2 year pay freeze and cleaners who have kept their stations clean throughout the pandemic are still paid less than the Real Living Wage and still have no sick pay read more

RMT condemns outsourcing company Mitie over staff tracking app (26 Apr) – RAIL UNION RMT today demanded the withdrawal of an app that giant outsourcing outfit Mitie are attempting to force on staff which would track their movements. RMT has condemned the move as the introduction of Big Brother into the workplace and is taking legal advice while demanding its withdrawal to allow for discussions with the union. MITIE has introduced the mobile phone application and a requirement for staff to download it to their own personal phone read more

RMT exposes First Group’s hypocrisy (26 Apr) – RMT exposes First Group’s hypocrisy over plans to pay shareholders an eyewatering £365m dividend whilst attacking its workers’ pay and conditions. TRANSPORT UNION RMT today condemned major rail and bus operator First Group’s announcement that it plans to pay a shareholder dividend of £365m this year, following the sale of two US bus divisions, at the same time as it continues to attack its workers’ pay and conditions read more

Ballot success at Queens Park (25 Apr) – I write further to my previous Circular (IR/128/21, 31st March 2021), concerning the above matter. Noting that the statutory thresholds have been met, your NEC commends members at Queens Park Depot for their determination in refusing to accept job cuts. Your NEC has referred this matter into the Southern Sub-Committee for examination and report. I will keep branches informed of all further developments read more

Sign petition: to The Mayor of London and the London Assembly – End the privatisation of cleaning at Transport for London

RMT members to take industrial action at Unipart Rail Doncaster – RMT members working at Unipart Rail Doncaster will be taking industrial action next month following a ballot after a derisory pay offer from the company. Unipart Rail’s Doncaster warehouse supplies parts to the rail industry. With effect from 00:01 hours on Friday 2nd April 2021, until further notice, RMT members working at Unipart Rail Doncaster are instructed:-

  • Not to work any non-contractual overtime
  • Not to work on a rest day read more

Fight job cuts at Queens Park – In January, LU announced a plan to cut train driver jobs at Queen’s Park depot. They’ve refused to back away from that, so our driver members will now ballot for industrial action. The ballot opens on 25/03 and closes on 08/04. Resist the cuts, vote yes! Read more

Sign this petition: RMT steps up campaign for TfL funding

Please Support RMT Members With No Wages! – RMT London Transport Region Zero Hours & Self-Employed members need our Solidarity Now! Many of our regions self-employed members and those on zero hours have not any had wages for 2 months since March. They have been abandoned by London Underground, TfL, the London Mayor and their agency employers. They MUST NOT be abandoned by us too; their RMT sisters and brothers! The RMT London Transport Regional Council and LU Engineering RMT branch are calling out to all branches, members and friends to dig deep and give meaningful solidarity to our hard pressed members facing poverty and possibly eviction from their homes. To help support by donating to the fund or to ask after support for yourself, please email: [email protected]  read more

 

TSSA

Network Rail – TSSA campaigns for hybrid working for all (5 May) – You have told us that our Union’s members overwhelmingly want the opportunity to blend home working and spending time with colleagues in your workplace.  TSSA successfully lobbied the Company to introduce Agile Working Principles in September 2020. These included the statement that agile should be the new normal. However, this year we have seen worrying moves from Network Rail to backtrack on these principles. The Company has also failed to consider how agile working can be facilitated in terms of IT, travel facilities, office space and so on. Different approaches are being taken in different Regions and Functions, leading to unfairness and inconsistency of opportunity to work in a more agile way read more

Government Clarity Needed Over Summer Travel (4 May) – TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has called on the Government to “provide much needed clarity” about overseas travel once lockdown restrictions are further lifted later this month (17 May) – ahead of the summer season read more

Amey CEFA TUPE Update (29 Apr) – TSSA in dispute with Bridgeway over TUPE meeting no-shows! NR promise improved safety and support for Eastern visual examiners. Amey win Scotland and majority Eastern OPI, extensions ongoing. View a pdf of this circular online: https://bit.ly/2RdoLxa. Our reps are continuing to support members impacted by Network Rail’s decision to break up responsibilities for examining buildings and structures read more

 

Unite

BREAKING NEWS!! Talks tomorrow in Banbury coffee workers’ ‘fire and rehire’ row, as Unite announces new strike dates (6 May) – Crunch talks are being held tomorrow (Friday 7 May) in a bid to resolve the ‘fire and rehire’ dispute involving nearly 300 workers at JDE (Jacobs Douwe Egberts) in Banbury, Oxfordshire. Talks between Unite the union and the management, under the auspices of the conciliation service Acas, come as the union plans to ramp up strike action later this month, following the decision by the Dutch-owned company to issue notice of dismissal and engagement for 291 employees. An already announced 24 hour strike will be held between 07:00 on Saturday (8 May) and 07.00 on Sunday (9 May). This will be followed by newly announced dates for a 24 hour strike on 15 May starting at 07.00 and ending at 07.00 on 16 May; and then a 72 hour strike starting at 06:00 on 26 May and running until 07.00 on 29 May. A continuous overtime ban also started on 1 May read more

Support the indefinite bus strike in Manchester – follow Go Ahead STOP the attacks on Queens Road Facebook page

Go Ahead offers deal to Manchester bus drivers – but workers remain on strike for now – Bus drivers employed by Go North West in Manchester have been taking all-out, continuous strike, since 28 February. The company is trying to fire and rehire its workers on vastly inferior contracts. Speaking at the Manchester May Day rally on 1 May, Unite branch secretary Colin Hayden said: “Today marks the start of the tenth week of our industrial action against fire and rehire. Our members decided they will not stand for the industrial terrorism of fire and rehire. Now we have had a deal from the Go Ahead group. It says fire and rehire has been withdrawn. Two sacked members will be given their jobs back. Sham, bogus disciplinaries have been stopped. But the deal is not done yet. We will return to work if and when our members vote for the deal. Until then we will be on strike.”

Kent residents face service cuts as Arriva bus depot facing closure (4 May) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, which represents tens of thousands of bus drivers, is warning that residents in the Sheerness area face losing bus services following the announcement that Arriva intends to close its depot in the town next month. The company claims the closure is due to high staff sickness rates which are causing lost mileage and overall loses. Unite is calling on Arriva to reverse the decision and is considering taking industrial action over the decision read more

Woolwich Ferry workers overwhelmingly vote to strike over victimised rep (30 Apr) – Workers operating the Woolwich Ferry, now run by Transport for London (TfL), will strike for eight days in May and June over the victimisation of a union rep, Unite the union announced today (Friday 30 April). Unite’s 57 members have voted by an overwhelming 97 per cent for strike action which will take place on 14, 24, 28 May and 1, 4, 7, 11, 21 June. The ferry has been so dogged by poor employment relations in recent years – leading to TfL taking over its operation from the discredited Briggs Marine Contractors Ltd – that the latest episode has been dubbed the ‘Groundhog Day’ dispute. Besides the victimisation issue, the staff are angry at the failure to agree a new pay and reward scheme; the excessive use of agency staff; and the failure to provide adequate health and safety training to new employees. Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “It is a sad indictment of the TfL bosses that they seem to be following the same course as Briggs Marine Contractors which meted out some appalling employment practices to the workforce in the recent past. Our members have returned an overwhelming mandate for strike action at the Woolwich Ferry in support of their victimised shop steward and over a myriad of other employment issues…” read more

Climate conference in Glasgow should be catalyst for global hotel group reset on employment rights (5 May) – Global hotel chain IHG’s annual meeting on Friday (7 May) should act as a catalyst for a new chapter in employment rights for its staff, especially as the world’s spotlight will be on Glasgow, where IHG has hotels, for the 26th UN Climate Change Conference (COP26). Unite the union called on IHG bosses ‘to do the right thing’ in the run-up to COP26 (1-12 November), after they terminated the employment of more than 300 workers at its two prestige Glasgow hotels Grand Central and The Blythswood read more

Devonport naval base faces 96 hours of strike action by tugboat crew in rota row (5 May) – Devonport naval base faces 96 hours of disruption next week when tugboat crews strike in the continuing rostering dispute, Unite the union said today (Wednesday 5 May). About 40 tractor tug crew members employed by Serco Marine at the naval base will strike from 07:00 on Saturday 15 May until 06:59 on Wednesday 19 May. This follows two well-supported 24 hour strikes last month. The long-running dispute centres on the imposition of a new three weeks ‘on’ and three weeks ‘off’ roster introduced in December, which Unite has repeatedly warned poses serious health & safety risks for its members, including excessive tiredness. It also has adverse implications for their annual leave entitlement. Unite members are currently being balloted to extend the mandate which will ensure that they will be covered by the full 12 week period of immunity from being dismissed for taking part in lawful industrial action, which will now cover all action until early July. The ballot closes on Wednesday 19 May read more

Norwich City council workers vote for strike action over broken promises on pay and conditions (5 May) – Workers who carry out vital services for Norwich City Council have overwhelmingly voted for industrial action. In the Unite ballot 83% of the workers backed industrial action on a 90 per cent turnout and UNISON members voted 81 per cent in favour of strike action on a turnout of 84 per cent. Unite and UNISON will now begin preparations to announce strike dates at the council’s new arm’s length company called Norwich City Services Ltd (NCSL) in a dispute over pay and conditions. The unions have been in discussions since 2018 with Norwich City Council (NCC) regarding the formation of the new arm’s length company NCSL. The company has been set up to bring services, including ground maintenance and street cleaning which had been outsourced to Norse, back in-house. But management is not delivering on commitments the City Council made to union members to harmonise their pay, terms and conditions with their council colleagues read more

Dudley hospital staff and patients at risk of Covid exposure due to Mitie failures warns Unite (4 May) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, is warning that due to systematic failures by outsourcing giant Mitie, which holds the facility management contract for the NHS Dudley Hospital Trust, staff and patients could be exposed to Covid-19. In a rare and unusual step the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has issued a notice of contravention on the company in relation to Covid safety. Rather than close the facility the HSE has given Mitie time to improve its Covid procedures. Unite has described Mitie as running a “lassiez faire” regime with regards to Covid security at its headquarters at the Russells Hall hospital. The facility management staff are not confined to the headquarters but work throughout all Dudley Group hospital buildings, greatly increasing concerns about Covid security read more

Pledge of support sought on council workers’ pay boost from 6 May election candidates (30 Apr) – Unite national officer for local government Jim Kennedy said: “All those seeking election on Thursday (6 May) should publicly state beforehand that they recognise the essential work carried out by local authority workers and make a commitment to campaign, if elected, to ensure that they receive a substantial pay rise…” read more

Serco civil enforcement strikes set to bring Ealing ‘election day parking chaos’ (30 Apr) – Strikes by Serco civil enforcement officers over union busting on 6 May are set to bring ‘election day parking chaos’, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Friday 30 April). More than 40 civil enforcement officers will strike after the company offered severance to elected Unite representatives and activists in order to undermine trade union organisation. Unite called on Ealing Council to force Serco to resolve the dispute and prevent parking disruption during the mayoral election and three by-elections being held on 6 May. The dispute is linked to a botched and unjustified restructuring and redundancy programme that Serco tried to instigate in late 2019, with minimal consultation with Unite. Serco is also refusing to negotiate a new absence management policy for employees working on the Ealing contract. Unite believes the present policy is being used to unfairly dismiss employees and should be renegotiated. The civil enforcement officers will take part in two 72-hour strikes, with the first beginning on 5 May and ending on 7 May, and the second beginning on 12 May and ending on 14 May read more

Derby Council’s decision to expand privatisation of Moorways leisure facilities condemned by Unite (30 Apr) – Conservative controlled Derby City Council’s decision to expand the privatisation of the city’s Moorways leisure facilities have been condemned by Unite, the UK’s leading union. During an urgent cabinet meeting on Wednesday April 28, the decision to include Moorways Stadium within the council’s outsourcing plans for the new swimming pool complex was taken read more

Amazon profits triple amid reports of union busting and poor treatment (30 Apr) – Amazon has tripled its profits off the backs of workers who are routinely prevented from having a collective voice in their workplace says Unite. Against a backdrop of reports about poor working conditions and anti-union tactics, Amazon workers have been essential during the Covid crisis. Unite is calling on Jeff Bezos to sign up to a declaration of neutrality which would guarantee workers the freedom to talk with and form a union without fear. Amazon has reported that its first-quarter profit more than tripled from a year ago, fuelled by the growth of online shopping read more

Devonport naval base faces wave of strikes in rota row, as tugboat crew balloted to renew strike action until July (30 Apr) – Plymouth tugboat crews are being balloted on renewing the strike mandate that could see a wave of strikes until early July in the continuing rostering dispute, Unite the union said today (Friday 30 April). About 40 tractor tug crew members employed by Serco Marine at Devonport’s naval base will be balloted for strike action from Wednesday (5 May). It closes on Wednesday 19 May. The re-ballot will extend the mandate which will ensure that Unite members will be covered by the full 12 week period of immunity from being dismissed for taking part in lawful industrial action, which will now cover all action until early July. Unite members have already held two 24 hour ‘solidly supported’ strikes this month in the long-running dispute over the imposition of a new three weeks ‘on’ and three weeks ‘off’ roster read more

New poll shows seven in ten back ban for bully boy fire and rehire (30 Apr) – The UK public wants fire and rehire banned, according to a new poll issued ahead of May Day (Saturday 1 May) by the country’s leading union, Unite. Seven in ten people (70 per cent) say that the controversial practice, whereby employers can rip up long established contracts and replace them with inferior ones, cutting pay and conditions, should be made illegal. A similar number of those polled by Survation for the union (68 per cent) disapprove or strongly disapprove of fire and rehire read more

Strike ballot at Bromley library puts focus once more on controversial social enterprise, Greenwich Leisure Ltd (29 Apr) – The troubled stewardship of Bromley libraries by controversial social enterprise Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) is again under the spotlight as employees at the Central Library are balloted for strike action over late night openings with fewer staff. The 17 staff, members of Unite the union, will be balloted for strike action from tomorrow (Friday 30 April) over new shift patterns, with the ballot closing on Friday 14 May. The latest dispute follows the eight-month strike by 50 library staff working in the borough’s 14 libraries over such issues as pay progression and staff structuring which ended in January 2020. This new dispute is about a proposed change to working hours so that staff, instead of working one late night every two weeks, will work four late nights every two weeks. Part time staff, who currently do not work late nights, will now be required to work one late night a fortnight. Unite said that the late nights plans, which only involve staff at Bromley Central Library, come following a reduction in staffing – so it will mean fewer staff to cover longer opening hours. Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “We, of course, want libraries to be open for as many hours as possible – but this has to come with sufficient staffing levels…” read more

‘Greedy’ Nestle slash 600 key worker jobs at Kit Kat and Fruit Pastille factories, say unions (28 Apr) – World’s biggest food manufacturer ruins hundreds of lives after allowing facilities to deteriorate and outsourcing production overseas, says GMB and Unite. Nestle is to slash almost 600 jobs across two northern sites where Kit Kats and Fruit Pastilles are produced, says GMB and Unite the union. The confectionary giant, the biggest food producer in the world, has announced the cuts in Fawdon, near Newcastle, and York read more

Banbury coffee workers whip up pressure in ‘fire and rehire’ row with 1 May demo and 24 hour strike (28 Apr) – Workers at JDE (Jacobs Douwe Egberts) in Banbury are ramping up pressure in the ‘fire and rehire’ dispute with a protest on Saturday (1 May), followed up with a 24 hour strike on 8/9 May. Unite the union has already announced that a continuous overtime ban will start on 1 May because of the decision by the Dutch-owned company to issue notice of dismissal and engagement for 291 employees. More strikes are on the cards for June. The demo, following strict Covid-19 protocols, will be held outside JDE’s Ruscote Avenue site, Banbury OX16 2QU from 10.30 on Saturday. The 24 hour strike will be held between 07:00 on Saturday 8 May and 07.00 on Sunday 9 May read more

Construction workers face retirement ‘black hole’ as pension take-up limited (28 Apr) – The majority of construction workers are not saving towards their retirement, research by Unite, the UK’s construction union, has found. Following a freedom of information request to the Department of Work and Pensions, the government has revealed that official estimates show that 797,000 (employees) in the construction sector are paying into a pension of any form. This is from a total construction workforce of 2.225 million (which is divided between 1,507 employees and 712,000 officially self-employed workers), according to Office for National Statistics figures. Therefore just 36 per cent of the construction workforce is known to be paying into a pension. As this is the figure for the entire construction industry, the percentage of blue collar construction workers contributing to a pension is expected to be considerably lower read more

Landmark agreement reached to preserve jobs and protect pay at Manchester, Stansted and East Midlands airports (27 Apr) – Unite, the UK’s premier aviation union, has signed a groundbreaking agreement to preserve jobs and protect wages at Manchester Airport Group (MAG), as the industry seeks to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic. The 12 month deal covers hundreds of workers at Manchester, Stansted and East Midlands Airports. Under the deal MAG has agreed that there will be no compulsory redundancies while the government’s job retention scheme remains in operation (currently scheduled to end on 30 September 2021). This has resulted in planned redundancies including 138 at Manchester Airport, being held in abeyance and Unite will seek to further mitigate those numbers in the coming months read more

Biomedical scientists will stop night and weekend shifts in month-long strike over Lancashire trust’s ‘bad faith’ in reneging over pay upgrade (27 Apr) – Biomedical scientists, who have been on the frontline of Covid-19 testing at a Lancashire NHS trust, will stop doing night, weekend and late shifts as part of a month-long strike action after ‘bad faith’ by bosses who reneged on an upgrading pay agreement. Unite the union warned that the impact could mean the accident and emergency department at the Royal Blackburn Hospital will close at night and weekends. Unite said that its 21 members working for East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust were owed back pay of between several hundred pounds to £8,000, as managers had failed to honour an agreement to upgrade them from band 5 to band 6 on the Agenda for Change (AfC) scale. The back pay issue goes back as far as 2010 for some members. Now the biomedical scientists, who analyse patient blood samples at the Royal Blackburn Hospital and the Burnley General Teaching Hospital will strike continuously from Friday 7 May until Friday 4 June, after they voted by a majority of 85 per cent for strike action read more

Ministers urged to stamp out pressures on chefs to work more than 48 hours a week (26 Apr) – Ministers need to tighten up the legislation to stop chefs – one of the groups of employees most hit by Covid-19 – from being pressurised into working more than 48 hours a week. The call has come from Unite the union before Workers’ Memorial Day on Wednesday (28 April) which commemorates all those killed, injured or made sick during the course of their work read more

Glass bottle shortages looming as ENCIRC workers in Cheshire announce strike action (26 Apr) – Members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, will begin strike action next month at the glass manufacturing and logistics company ENCIRC Ltd, based in Elton, Cheshire, in a dispute over working patterns and contracts of employment. The dispute involves workers in ENCIRC’s glass manufacturing section, who believe that they are being treated in a less favourable manner compared to the company’s other departments. Over 170 workers were balloted for industrial action, as the introduction of flexible working practices has resulted in an insufficient pay uplift, the loss of flexibility when annual leave can be taken and a reduction in staffing levels giving rise to health and safety concerns. The workers involved recorded a 95 per cent yes vote in favour of strike action. A total of 12 days of strike action have been announced for next month with the first 48 hour strike beginning on Thursday 6 May. This will be followed by a further 48 strike beginning on Thursday 13 May. Later in the month there will be two four day stoppage beginning on Wednesday 19 May and Wednesday 26 May read more

Security guards at Reading hospital to be balloted again for strike action in ‘David and Goliath’ pay battle read more

Support striking Reading hospital security guards – Text solidarity messages via Jessica 07718668497 and donate to strike fund: Acc. No.: 20173991   Sort Code: 60-83-01.  Sign petition to Mark Wallace , Kingdom Service Group Managing Director: Pay Royal Berkshire Hospital security staff a wage they can live on

Ealing parking strikes latest in series of industrial disputes to hit outsourcer Serco – Serco civil enforcement officers in Ealing have voted to strike over the targeting of union activists in the latest in a series of industrial disputes to hit the outsourcer, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Thursday 15 April). After a near unanimous vote, more than 40 civil enforcement officers will strike over Serco’s offer of severance to elected Unite representatives and activists in order to undermine trade union organisation. The dates for the strikes have yet to be announced. As well as targeting union reps and activists, Serco offered severance to individual employees in order to undermine collective consultation. Serco is also refusing to negotiate a new absence management policy for employees working on the Ealing contract. Unite believes the present policy is being used to unfairly dismiss employees and should be renegotiated. This dispute follows a botched and unjustified restructuring and redundancy programme that Serco tried to instigate in late 2019, with minimal consultation with Unite. Meanwhile, Serco catering workers at the Royal London hospital in Whitechapel are being balloted for strike action in a dispute over bullying and the imposition of new rotas read more

Support Thurrock bin strike! – Strike dates set as Thurrock council heroes resist cuts to pay and conditions – Council workers providing essential services through the health crisis to the residents of Thurrock will strike for three weeks because of Thurrock Council’s plans to brutally cut their pay and conditions. Refuse workers, highway maintenance and street cleaners will take strike action from Tuesday 13 April until Friday 7 May, excluding 3 May. The very workers who have been supporting residents, by providing key services throughout the current health crisis, are furious that they are now the target of proposed cuts of between £2,000 – £3,500 a year for refuse workers, highway maintenance and street cleaners.  Meanwhile, the council has not proposed any cuts to the pay and conditions of senior management. Lyn Carpenter, the chief executive earns almost £200,000 a year read more

Donate to strike hardship fund – Unite 1/1152, sort code 60-83-01, accpunt number 20216557

Follow Justice For Refuse Workers & Cleansers on Facebook

Sign petition: Thurrock Residents Please Support Key Workers Pay & Terms & Conditions

Life Residential and Featherstone Leigh estate agents ‘facing further pain’ with fresh Goodlord strike ballot – London estate agents using services from Goodlord are ‘facing further pain’ after striking workers from the lettings software provider were balloted for fresh industrial action over £6,000 pay cuts. More than 20 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, employed in Goodlord’s referencing department have been on strike since 22 February over fire and rehire plans that would see their pay plummet from £24,000 to £18,000. Goodlord provides services for a number of estate agents in London, including Life Residential, Best Estate Agents, Andrews and Featherstone Leigh. The ballot for another round of strike action takes into account not just the pay cuts, but the dismissal and hostile targeting of union members while on strike, as well as Goodlord’s use of agency labour during the industrial action. It opens on 14 April and closes on 26 April read more    See Reel News video of Goodlord strike Messages of support to [email protected]

  • Email complaints to [email protected]; tweet complaints to @sogoodlord
  • Strike fund donations to Unite LE/7098L London ITC Branch, sort code 60-83-01, account 20303680, reference Goodlord

St Mungo’s maintenance strikes called as concern at charity’s ‘bullying and anti-union culture’ grows – Maintenance workers at the St Mungo’s housing charity will begin indefinite strike action from Thursday 22 April in response to ‘appalling treatment’ by senior management, Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, said today (Thursday 8 April). The all-out strike follows a warning in March by Unite, which has more than 500 members at St Mungo’s, that a ‘bullying and anti-union culture’ amongst the management at the London-based charity needed to be addressed. St Mungo’s staff staged walk-outs last year, in part due to the charity’s unbalanced and unfair use of disciplinary procedures. Unite pointed to the targeting of the 44 per cent of workplace reps at the charity, who are currently engaged in formal processes concerning their own employment, as evidence of an anti-union bias by management. Staff relations have become so bad within St Mungo’s property services department that 12 Unite members will begin indefinite strike action on 22 April. The strike was called after a number of staff grievances against property services senior management were dismissed read more

St Mungos management escalate dispute by suspending Unite rep – Orwellian move at St Mungos: management suspend Unite rep for grievance about bullying. In an Orwellian escalation of the crisis at St Mungo’s, management have suspended a union rep who had raised a grievance concerning bullying management.  The grounds include that senior managers were distressed by the suggestion of a bullying management style. Astounding 44% of reps already facing formal processes regarding own employment. This twist follows a vote for strike action by this team following a failure to adequately investigate bullying management! Read more

Donate to strike hardship fund – Unite LE/1111, sort code 60-83-01, account number 204183

Sainsbury’s faces South East Easter shortages as DHL strikes over ‘union busting’ loom – Sainsbury’s is facing Easter shortages at its stores across the South East, including parts of London, after DHL staff at its Dartford regional distribution centre voted for strike action over ‘union busting’, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Friday 12 February). The Dartford strike ballot was called after a Unite steward, who was providing support to a member of staff during an investigation hearing, was suspended for challenging a DHL managers’ version of events. The reason given for the suspension by the manager was that the Unite steward was being aggressive – an accusation flatly contradicted by a neutral member of staff who was present at the meeting as a third party. After the vote in favour of strike action, more than 350 DHL staff are now poised to stage walk out’s throughout March, April and May read more

Read document by Unite Community Cumbria branch: ‘Covid and the Tories – a world beating catastrophe’

 

PCS

Hundreds more join PCS as DVLA members walk out again over Covid safety (4 May) – PCS membership in the DVLA branch is now over 3,500. Many more strike fund donations and messages of support have been coming in – see how you can help members win this dispute. Early reports are that the first of four days of action in the second week of walkouts at the DVLA has been better supported than the first. PCS membership in the DVLA has now risen beyond 3,500, with new members joining to be part of the action and the campaign. In the last week close to a hundred more have joined the union read more    Sign our DVLA e-action

Support PCS members striking for Covid safety at DVLA at Facebook live rally 7 May

Treasury trying to steal pension improvements and reduced contributions (30 Apr) – Many PCS members will be very angry about the possibility that reduced pension contributions of at least 2% and improved benefits could be snatched away at the same time that many of them face a further pay freeze, also imposed by this government. PCS will be urging members to support our campaign against these outrageous acts in the months ahead read more

Jobcentres still not safe (4 May) – PCS members have been sharing their concerns about safety in their offices as more staff and customers are being asked to return to jobcentres. PCS has opposed DWP’s plans to extend services in jobcentres as we do not believe that the work can be done safely due to Covid or that the necessary risk assessments and safety measures have been put in place. In a recent survey, only a fifth of staff said they felt safe returning to work in jobcentres, while 58% said they felt unsafe read more

PCS to ballot jobcentre members over return to workplaces (30 Apr) – The consultative ballot is in response to DWP’s insistence that staff and customers return to jobcentres for face to face services. Since 12 April, DWP has been asking considerably more staff to return to jobcentres to carry out face to face interviews with customers. This is despite staff working from home successfully for up to a year, carrying out these interviews by phone. We believe that coronavirus still poses a threat to safety and that to extend services in jobcentres now is unsafe, and places staff, their families and customers at risk. We are therefore balloting PCS members working in jobcentres to ask if they would be prepared to take industrial action over DWP’s decision. The ballot is consultative and a further ballot of members would be required before strike action could take place…The ballot is from Wednesday 5 May to Friday 21 May 2021 and is being run electronically read more    6pm 4 May Facebook live for jobcentre workers

PCS ballot on improved OCS pay offer is open (26 Apr) – PCS recommends voting yes to the improved pay offer from OCS. Join PCS by noon on Thursday, 29 April to receive a vote. The ballot closes on Thursday, 6 May. PCS is currently balloting all OCS members employed as security officers on the HMCTS security contract on an improved pay offer that not only improves pay but also terms and conditions. OCS tabled the improved offer following a successful industrial action ballot of PCS OCS members earlier this year. PCS recommends voting yes to the offer read more

 

GMB

Ikea re-commits to paying Living Wage Foundation rates in big win for GMB members (1 May) – Swedish giant reinstates rate from May 1 – International Workers’ Day – after pressure from GMB Union. Ikea workers are celebrating today [Saturday May 1, 2021] after the company agreed to re-commit to paying workers at least the Living Wage Foundation rate. The Swedish home furnishings giant had come under fire in November after refusing to honour the 20 pence per hour increase announced by the Living Wage Foundation, (LWF) while still displaying a Living Wage Employer plaque on sites read more

‘Greedy’ Nestle slash 600 key worker jobs at Kit Kat and fruit pastille factories (28 Apr) – World’s biggest food manufacturer ruins hundreds of lives after allowing facilities to deteriorate and outsourcing production overseas. Nestle is to slash almost 600 jobs across two northern sites where Kit Kats and Fruit Pastilles are produced, says GMB and Unite. The confectionary giant, the biggest food producer in the world, has announced the cuts in Fawdon, near Newcastle, and York read more

Official workplace fatality figures hiding thousands of covid deaths (28 Apr) – Deaths must be acknowledged so lessons can be learned. Official worker fatality figures are hiding thousands of covid deaths, says GMB Union on Workers’ Memorial Day [April 28]. Just 111 people have died at work during the year to March 31, according to HSE figures. But according to the Government’s own statistics, more than 5,000 people had died from covid  –  at least some from catching covid at work. Indeed, ONS figures this year found at least eight thousand working age deaths were linked to covid in England and Wales in 2020. The official statistics should reflect this in all forms, regardless of whether a RIDDOR notification was made or not says GMB Union read more

Health Minister ‘too busy’ to meet NHS workers and discuss 1% pay ‘betrayal’ (26 Apr) – Members are furious and let down – and Ms Whately needs to hear them. Health Minister Helen Whatley is ‘too busy’ to meet NHS workers and discuss how they feel about the Government’s 1% pay recommendation, she had told GMB. Speaking in a Westminster Hall debate, Ms Whatley said pay was ‘rarely mentioned’ when she spoke to health workers. GMB wrote to her inviting her to speak to the tens of thousands of NHS workers the union represents to ask them how they feel about the Government’s 1% pay recommendation – which amounts to a real terms pay cut. Ms Whatley’s office replied to say she is ‘getting many requests for her time’ and is ‘unable to meet at the moment’ read more

Support the GMB strike against ‘fire and rehire at British Gas – send a message of support and donate to the GMB British Gas ‘Fire and Rehire’ Strike Fund

  

Unison

UNISON celebrates Domestic Abuse Bill passing into law (4 May) – Abuse survivors will have new workplace protections as a direct result of work by UNISON. UNISON is celebrating after playing a major role in ensuring that new legal protections for those suffering domestic have now become law. The Domestic Abuse Bill was given royal assent and became law on on 29 April, after years of campaigning from survivors, charities and unions, including UNISON read more

Public want government to keep promises and give the NHS what it needs, poll shows (4 May) – Two-thirds of public think additional resources should be made available for NHS staff pay rise. Two-thirds of the public believe the government should try harder to find the money for a decent pay rise for NHS staff in England, according to a Savanta ComRes poll published today (Tuesday). The research for the UK’s 14 health unions shows public support remains strong for a proper wage rise for health staff including nurses, midwives, healthcare assistants and hospital porters. The heads of UNISON, Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and Royal College of Midwives (RCM), speaking on behalf of all the health unions, say the findings demonstrate people want the Prime Minister to stand by his promises to NHS staff. The survey of more than 2,000 people makes clear a majority of the public (60%) think the 1% rise proposed by the government for NHS workers in England is too low read more

It’s “never been clearer” that Mitie can afford to pay, as Cumberland Infirmary workers begin third round of strike action – More than 150 porters, cleaners, switchboard and catering staff employed by Mitie at Cumberland Infirmary are set to begin a further three days of strike action tomorrow (Friday) over missing payments for working unsocial hours. The hospital workers have already taken four days of strike action in recent months. While the strike action escalates, trade union UNISON says that it has “never been clearer” that Mitie can afford to pay NHS rates to the Infirmary workers it employs read more

Unison: Support the Birmingham NHS Heartlands Porters Dispute – UNSION members who are Heartlands Hospital Porters are currently taking strike action about the proposed imposition of a new rota. This will result in them working detrimental rotating 8 shifts pattern. The proposed rota impacts on our members health and well being; their caring responsibilities; their work/life balance and results in a significant cut in wages for many read more on Facebook page.

Email message of support to [email protected]

Donate to hardship fund: Unison University Hospitals Birmingham Branch 22536, Unity Trust Bank, Ac: 20403849   Sort Code: 60 83 01

Sign petition: We call upon the Chair of the Trust Jacqui Smith and the Chief Executive David Rosser to halt the imposition of the rota and to not ‘fire and rehire’ their Heartlands Hospital Porters on the 1st Feb. We urge them to ask the senior management to work with UNISON to implement a jointly agreed rota which is based upon a ‘fixed’ shift basis

 

CWU

Paragon members accept across the board inflation-plus pay offer (May 5) – Members in Paragon Customer Communications have voted by two-to-one to accept a CWU-brokered pay deal that will see  members on the Santander account receive a fully consolidated 2% increase. The company’s ‘final offer’, which had been recommended for acceptance by the union’s National Team, received the backing of 66.67% of those who cast a vote in an electronic consultative ballot that closed yesterday (Tuesday). Management has now been  informed of the result, which means the settlement will be paid in this month’s salaries, backdated to April 1 read more

We’re not going back to the bad old days, EE members warn (Apr 30) – Thousands of EE members have pledged they won’t accept workplace advances secured since union recognition was won being put into reverse by bosses who seem intent on turning back the clock to the bad old days of management by diktat. The resounding message of defiance was delivered in a special Facebook Live session for EE members that was watched live by more than 2,500 across the union’s social media channels on Tuesday evening, and has since received thousands more catch-up views on Facebook alone. Visceral outpourings of anger over EE’s current trajectory on social media both during and after the broadcast come at a pivotal moment for the CWU’s Count Me In campaign of resistance against an unprecedented assault on terms & conditions and job security across the whole of BT Group read more

Big ‘yes’ from Ericsson members for pay deal that delivers inflation-plus for most (Apr 28) – Members in Ericsson have overwhelmingly accepted a CWU-brokered pay deal which will  see the majority of members in Field Service Operations (FSO) receive fully consolidated increases ranging from 2% to 3.5%. The company’s ‘full and final’ offer, which was thrashed out in detailed talks that commenced in February, had been “strongly recommended” for acceptance in a consultative ballot by the union’s Ericsson National Team. The ballot result, which was announced yesterday (Tuesday) confirmed 85% support for the deal from members on a 63% turnout read more

Pay claims lodged with Capita O2 and Tesco Mobile partnerships (Apr 28) – Identical pay claims have been submitted by the CWU on behalf of members in the Capita O2 and Tesco Mobile partnerships – with the union seeking to build on the advances made last year for the lowest paid staff by way of a 1.35% increase over and above the rise that has already been applied for those on the Real Living Wage read more

South Midlands Mail Centre’s four-day week is a win for all (Apr 28) – Nearly a quarter of the processing workforce at the Northampton site have now transferred onto new four-day week duty patterns since a local agreement was struck between the CWU and the company late last year read more

Shameless BT Enterprise announces jobs export to India and redundancies in the UK (Apr 27) – New doubt has been cast on BT’s corporate social responsibility following the latest in a series of offshoring outrages that will see job losses in the UK stemming directly from a cost-cutting decision to transfer work to India read more

Sign petition: Keep BT desk based sites open in London and the South East

 

NIPSA

QUB Crèche – Dispute Intensifies (28 Apr) – On International Workers Memorial Day our members in QUB Crèche have intensified their industrial action campaign in pursuit of protection of their terms and conditions of employment. As previously advised QUB Crèche Workers commenced industrial action on 8 March 2021, International Women’s Day. Unfortunately to date the dispute has not been resolved and in an effort to bring the employers back to the negotiating table our brave QUB Crèche members have unanimously agreed to take 4 half day strikes on the following dates:-

28 April (afternoon), 6 May (morning), 14 May (afternoon), 19 May (morning). The morning strikes will run until 1pm with the afternoon strikes commencing at 1pm read more

Education Welfare Officers to Commence Industrial Action (28 Apr) – Education Welfare Officers employed by the Education Authority will commence a period of industrial action from Tuesday 4 May 2021. This will commence with various actions short of strike action which is in furtherance of a long dispute in relation to their pay. While a lunchtime protest will be held on Tuesday 4 May 2021 this will be for Education Welfare Staff only to ensure that we comply with Covid 19 restrictions. However, I am asking that Branches consider sending solidarity messages to the 100 plus members who will be engaged in this action. The solidarity messages should be sent by email to Alan Law and Alan will arrange for these to be forwarded to the members read more

 

POA

POA submission to PSPRB (29 Apr) – Please find attached the 2021 POA submissions to the Prison Service Pay Review Body for your information. The POA submissions were completed and forwarded to Prison Service Pay Review Body on the 19th February 2021, however we were unable to share our submissions with the membership until the HMPPS submissions were submitted. The Pay Review Body will now consider our evidence alongside the employers evidence and evidence from other recognised unions within the remit group read more

Joint letter reference workplace exploitation and systemic racism in the workplace (26 Apr) – The POA are proud to be a signatory to an open letter to the Prime Minister, calling for him to take a different path to achieve race equality at work and in the labour market to that recommended in the report from the Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparities. The report has been criticised by many of the people and organisations listed by the Commission as consultees, who say that their testimonies and evidence have been ignored. The trade union movement rejects the idea that defending working class interests and pushing for equality for BME workers are opposed, noting that today’s working class is multi-ethnic and multi-faith. The full text of the open letter from 36 trade union general secretaries to the Prime Minister is here

 

FBU

Firefighters Memorial Day 2021: UK firefighters honour 2,300 fallen colleagues with a minute’s silence (3 May) – Fire Brigades Union using day to launch new Red Plaque website where the public can pay tribute to firefighters who have been lost and learn about the incidents. Firefighters across the UK will hold a minute’s silence at 12:00 midday on Tuesday 4 May for Firefighters’ Memorial Day, in memory of more than 2,300 firefighters who have died in the line of duty. Firefighters and control staff will stand outside their stations and workplaces and sound their sirens as they hold a minute’s silence for the fallen firefighters, including two serving UK firefighters who have lost their lives to coronavirus over the last year read more

 

BFAWU

‘Almost one in five food workers have gone hungry’ study finds – A new study has suggested almost one in five food workers may have run out of food because of a lack of money during the pandemic. The shocking figure comes from a new report being launched by the Bakers and Allied Food Workers Union which found that:-

  • 19% had run out of food because of a lack of money
  • 40% had eaten less than they should because of a lack of cash
  • Over a third (35%) ate less to make sure others in the house got a meal
  • 21% relied on food from friends and relatives
  • More than 7% had experience of using food banks

The scale of food poverty amongst food workers is shameful and represents a clear need to enshrine the right to food in law read more

 

NEU

Support these NEU strikes:-
Action Date Contact
Leaways School /Hackney

(TU Victimisation and Abuse of Disciplinary Procedures)

Wednesday 5 May Thursday 6 May [email protected]
Parkwood Primary School / Hackney (Redundancies) Tuesday 4 May

Wednesday 5 May

Thursday 6 May

[email protected]
Beal High School/Redbridge (Sick pay) Tuesday 4 May

Wednesday 5 May

Thursday 6 May

[email protected]

[email protected]

North Huddersfield Trust School/Kirklees (Victimisation of Rep) Wednesday 5 May

Thursday 6 May

[email protected]
Victoria Education Centre / Bournemouth

(Terms & Conditions)

Wednesday 5 May

Thursday 6 May

[email protected]

Sutton Trust on Pupil Premium Funding (29 Apr) – School budgets have been hit hard by coronavirus and the inadequate reimbursement from Government. Gavin Williamson must come clean as to how much schools have lost as a result of his moving the goalpost read more

 

NASUWT
Academy proposals an unwelcome distraction (30 Apr)
– Commenting on the speech given by Education Secretary Gavin Williamson today, Dr Patrick Roach, General Secretary of NASUWT – The Teachers’ Union, said: “The latest ideas being touted by the Secretary of State for Education will be an unwelcome distraction when Ministers should be focused fully on investment in schools to enable teachers and headteachers to deal with the profound and continuing impacts of the pandemic. Doubling down on academisation will not help teachers in the classroom as they rebuild the recovery for pupils across the country” read more

 

EIS

Dispute at Forth Valley College Continues as Management Refuse to Negotiate 5 May) – EIS-FELA lecturers at Forth Valley College are taking part in a further 3 days of strike action this week as part of a long running dispute regarding the downgrading of 27 lecturing posts to Instructor Assessor posts. EIS-FELA members at Forth Valley College have been engaged in strike action since 10th November, 2020 read more

Next Scottish Parliament must deliver promises on teacher numbers & class sizes (4 Apr) – Ahead of the Scottish Parliament election the EIS has called on all political parties to deliver on the promises they have made on employing more teachers and cutting class sizes to support post-Covid education recovery read more

As Schools mark May Day, H&S must Remain a Priority (4 May) – With schools across the country closed to mark the International Workers’ May Day holiday, the EIS is calling for a renewed commitment from national and local government to ensure a safe and healthy working environment for pupils and teachers in the nation’s schools read more

EIS FELA ratifies resolution to college dispute to protect role of lecturers (27 Apr) – The Executive of the EIS-FELA has today (Tuesday) unanimously agreed to ratify a resolution to the national college dispute, as agreed with the employers’ body Colleges Scotland last week. Should Colleges Scotland also ratify the agreement at its meeting tomorrow, this will end the dispute and halt the programme of strike action that has been taking place in colleges across Scotland over the past two months read more

 

UCU

Updates on latest UCU disputes

Petition calling for fair funding and online learning

Global boycott of University of Leicester begins today (4 May) – UCU announced a global boycott of the University of Leicester as the union hit the institution with the ultimate sanction of being greylisted. The announcement comes as Leicester staff also begin a marking and assessment boycott. The greylisting sanction is part of a long running dispute over redundancies at the university. The sanction means UCU is asking its members, other trade unions, labour movement organisations and the international academic community to support its members at Leicester in any way possible read more

Over 340 casualised academics at University of Cambridge demand fair pay & conditions (30 Apr) – Over 340 supervisors of undergraduate students at the University of Cambridge have signed a petition demanding better pay and conditions. Senior college representatives are meeting today to discuss their demands. Supervisors employed by Cambridge’s colleges provide essential support to undergraduate students and are the backbone of the collegiate university’s world-renowned teaching system, but many lack employment contracts and are paid poverty wages. The petition, addressed to the senior tutors at Cambridge’s 31 colleges, is part of the #justice4collegesupervisors campaign launched by Cambridge University and College Union (CUCU) and Cambridge Students’ Union (CSU) read more

UCU to hold public meeting on fighting Warwickshire College Group closures (27 Apr) – UCU will hold a public meeting next Tuesday (4 May) as part of its campaign to fight the closure of substantial parts of Evesham College and the shutting down and sale of the Malvern Hills campus by the Warwickshire College Group (WCG). WCG plans to close the Malvern campus completely by August, while cutting provision at Evesham College by two-thirds, and moving Supported Learning and Access to HE courses to another site 7 miles away. Students and staff currently based at Malvern Hills would be forced to travel over 20 miles. Early Years courses would be slashed completely read more

Student protest at University of Chester over 27 job cuts (26 Apr) – Students held a protest against 27 job cuts at the University of Chester outside Chester Town Hall. They were joined by university staff opposed to the cuts. The protest was over claims by the University of Chester that it needs to cut 27 staff in the English, humanities, history, archaeology, engineering, geography and media departments by July (2021) because of student enrolment issues. The university originally announced 86 redundancies, but negotiations with trade unions have led to a number of posts being saved. University of Chester students have also launched a petition against the cuts, saying the job losses would damage student learning. Over 150 University of Chester staff attending UCU Chester’s biggest ever branch meeting voted overwhelmingly (96%) to pursue all means necessary to oppose all compulsory redundancies read more

Industrial action announced at the University of Liverpool (26 Apr) – Over 1,000 UCU members at the University of Liverpool are expected to take industrial action from Monday 10 May for up to five months in a row over job cuts. This will include members only working to contracted hours and boycotting all voluntary activities. If the university does not meet the union’s demands, staff are prepared to take further action before the end of term, which could include strikes, as well as a marking and assessment boycott. The action comes after an overwhelming 90% of members who voted in a ballot earlier this month backed industrial action to fight the university’s plans to slash up to 47 teaching and research jobs in the faculty of health and life sciences. The proposed job cuts follow a long-standing dispute between UCU and university management over the use of flawed data on research and grant income to assess performance. This practice has been widely criticised by experts read more

Three days of strikes announced for prison education staff across England – UCU announced three days of strike action at prisons across England over Covid health and safety concerns. UCU prison education members will stage a one-day walkout at 49 prison and young offender institutions on Monday 26 April followed by a two-day strike on Tuesday 11 May and Wednesday 12 May. Further industrial action may be announced if the employer, Novus, fails to resolve the dispute read more

UCU fighting fund: the link is here and donations to the fund are spent on supporting members involved in important disputes. As always, members are asked to contribute whatever their circumstances allow. A donation in solidarity of any amount will be gratefully received by members taking action.

 

NUJ

NUJ vows to renew efforts to defend press freedom (2 May) – On World Press Freedom Day on Monday 3 May, the NUJ has stressed the need for renewed, collective effort to defend and protect media freedom at home and abroad. During the last year, press freedom has been put under huge strain as journalists continue to work on the front-line to deliver news and information to the public. In Turkey, Belarus, India, Myanmar and China, journalists have been jailed and face brutal crackdowns on their right to report. In other countries, including the UK, there have been harmful legislative measures imposed alongside an increasing number of threats to journalists’ safety read more

 

Prospect

Just like Premier League clubs, English schools are now subject to narrow control by businessmen (27 Apr) – Education journalist Warwick Mansell wonders why there is not similar popular outrage over academies policy, as there was over the doomed European Super League read more

Government backs down on exit payment cap after Prospect legal challenge (27 Apr) – Prospect pensions officer Joe Anderton gives an update on government’s decision, following pressure from trade unions, to revoke its proposed exit payment cap for public sector workers read more

 

USDAW

IKEA’s ongoing commitment to be a Living Wage employer welcomed by Usdaw – the union continues to campaign for at least £10 per hour (2 May) – Retail trade union Usdaw has welcomed IKEA’s commitment to continue as a Living Wage employer, ensuring staff will be paid at least £10.85 an hour in London and £9.50 in the rest of the country. The union continues to call for at least £10 per hour for workers of all ages across the UK read more

 

Mandate (Ireland)

Mandate condemns treatment of ex-Debenhams workers on Parnell Street – Mandate Trade Union has condemned the heavy-handed tactics of Gardai last night (Apr 22) on Parnell Street, Dublin where ex-Debenhams workers were forcefully removed from picket line at the request of KPMG, the Debenhams liquidator. Mandate General Secretary Gerry Light said the incident was entirely unnecessary and preventable. “This incident should never have happened. The workers had decided to ballot for a potential resolution to this dispute at 4:30pm yesterday and then we see these traumatic videos last night where female retail workers, who were treated abysmally by their employer and left without their agreed redundancy packages, are being manhandled and dragged away from their picket line.” He added, “We need legislation to prevent this from ever happening again, and we need it now. This government have been dwelling on this long enough. We know what needs to change, and they need to change it, immediately” read more

Support striking Debenhams Workers: Email messages of support to the strikers via [email protected] and Mandate through [email protected]. Also, follow Stand with Debenhams Workers Facebook page

 

SIPTU

SIPTU members express outrage at deferral of ERO for security industry (29 Apr) – SIPTU members in the security industry have expressed outrage at a decision to defer the implementation of pay increases contained in a new Employment Regulation Order (ERO) for the sector until 1st September, 2021 read more

SIPTU calls on Kerry Group to attend WRC to avoid industrial dispute (26 Apr) – SIPTU members at the Kerry Group have called on management to attend at the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) to seek a resolution to a dispute concerning redundancies. Following an announcement by the Kerry Group in March to outsource 150 jobs to Malaysia and Mexico from its business centers in Naas and Charleville, SIPTU representatives engaged with the company to try and secure an acceptable agreement on behalf of union members. The jobs affected are primarily in the finance, human resource, data management and regulatory functions read more

 

IWGB

Bolt Hides from Workers Demanding Safety Protections After Murder of Driver (5 May) – The United Private Hire Drivers Branch of the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) protested on Tuesday 4 May outside Bolt offices in London. Following the murder of Bolt driver Gabriel Bringye while on a job for Bolt in February, drivers have been calling for better safety protections from the app-based operator. This protest follows on from a strike by private hire drivers in March in memory of IWGB member and private hire driver Gabriel Bringye, who was murdered on 17 February while working for app-based private hire company Bolt. Later in March, another Bolt driver Muhammad Alam was also assaulted by passengers while on a Bolt job and had his car stolen at knifepoint. Gabriel’s sister Renata attended the demonstration. She is a single-mother and a private hire driver herself, who has now given up driving for Bolt out of fear. She still works as a private hire driver to make ends meet but only works in daylight hours out of fear for her safety. Gabriel’s family have received no support from the company aside from written condolences and some flowers read more

 

UVW

The UVW comes out in force for International Workers Day (4 May) – UVW members came together in their dozens on International Workers Day to express their solidarity with the Royal Parks cleaners and to fight against the Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which represents a mortal threat to our right to protest and take direct action. If passed the bill would create a new “public nuisance” offence with a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. The wording of the bill is far reaching and dangerous, it gives the police the power to shut down protests which “result in serious disruption to the activities of an organisation which are carried on in the vicinity”. The very sort of protests which UVW organises to beat the bosses! The day of action saw UVW members come together outside Buckingham Palace before setting off on a march to protest the appalling treatment of UVW members working as outsourced cleaners at the Royal Parks. The workers are currently battling to be brought in-house and to have their unlawfully dismissed colleague reinstated and to have £100,000 in stolen holiday pay returned to them. They were also joined by the care workers at Sage Nursing Home who recently voted – for a second time! – to go on strike and who are battling for trade union recognition, a £12 per hour living wage and the same sick pay as NHS workers read more

Nursing home workers vote for a voice at work and strike action (27 Apr) – This week the battle for recognition at Sage Nursing Home in North London takes a new turn as all domestic staff and care workers will decide whether or not to vote for trade union recognition in their workplace. The ballot that opened yesterday is the latest development in a battle for recognition that started in Spring 2020 when workers joined UVW and called for voluntary recognition. Their request was denied. UVW members responded by springing into action and launching a campaign for a real living wage, decent sick pay, and annual leave. Their union, UVW, began the process of applying for trade union recognition, which if granted would mean that by law Sage would have to sit around a table and negotiate with workers through their trade union. This recognition ballot comes as the second ballot to strike closed on Friday 23rd April in which UVW members returned a 100% Yes vote to strike. Their message to Sage is clear: with or without recognition they will not be silenced and their voices will be heard on the streets, in the home and at negotiating tables read more

 

 

Other News

Socially-distanced protest against Clarion called by Social Housing Action Campaign (SHAC) 1pm, Friday 7th May, Clarion Head Office, 6 More London Place, Tooley Street, London SE1 2DA. Join us if you can for our socially distant protest on Friday at Clarion HQ. We will be calling for Clarion to ‘See Us, Hear Us’, reading a poem written especially for the occasion, and displaying our flags. Please come along to give solidarity even if you are not a Clarion tenant or resident. The issues are across all major HAs and we need to show that they will not be tolerated any longer

 

Tamil Solidarity trade union newsletter and model motion

 

 

 

Fight blacklisting and victimisation of union reps

#SPYCops Inquiry exposes state surveillance of workers movement

Keep up with developments and read and watch campaigners’ statements on the Campaign Opposing Police Surveillance (COPS) and Undercover Policing Inquiry websites and spycops info Facebook group

Builders Crack: The Movie

In the current situation, this long lost film from the 1990s about rank and file union organising in the construction industry is intended to lift the spirits, but also to spark a debate in our movement. Hope the youngsters in this film put a smile on your face.

Watch – Share – Discuss https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2VZ-QMA1FMg

Blacklist Support Group

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

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

 

International

UVW stands in solidarity WITH Mondi Warehouse workers in USA read more

 

 

Diary

NSSN Conference 2021: 11am Sunday 20th June online via Zoom Facebook event

 

 

 

CONTACT US

PHONE 07952 283 558

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