NSSN 544: NSSN meeting – Stop the Freeports Race to the Bottom

July 19, 2021 in Bulletins

NSSN 544: NSSN meeting – Stop the Freeports Race to the Bottom – 7.30pm Wednesday 21 July Facebook event

The Tories have announced their plan for 8 new Freeports, allegedly to boost jobs. But correctly unions have flagged up the dangers of bosses using them to attack trade union agreements that protect workers’ pay, terms and conditions and pensions.

The NSSN agreed at our annual conference in June to assist with initiatives in opposing more attacks on workers, on top of the fire and rehire offensive that we are currently seeing.

We are looking at a public national event in the autumn and this is a planning meeting for that and the campaign that is needed.

The NSSN would like to thank Solidarity Shouts for merging their planned meeting on Freeports into ours. They are supporting this meeting along with Southampton & South West Hampshire Trades Union Council and others.

Zoom details:-

Join Zoom Meeting

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82518457821

Meeting ID: 825 1845 7821

Passcode: 429630

 

Sunday September 12th – 12pm NSSN TUC Rally

This year’s TUC Congress will again be virtual due to the Covid pandemic. Therefore, like last year, the NSSN will be holding an online rally. More details to come

Confirmed speaker: Sarah Woolley BFAWU General Secretary   Facebook event

Zoom details:-
https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86116774093?pwd=OVNvZldISGozKzd6U0QvL1hBWEI3Zz09

Meeting ID: 861 1677 4093
Passcode: NSSN2021

 

Fight the Tory 1% pay insult: #NHSPay15 Petition Drop – 2.30pm Tuesday 20 July

2.30pm Assemble and Protest Rally

4pm Petition Drop to Downing St   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]

Support GARY CARNEY, TRAIN OPERATOR – LONDON UNDERGROUND

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]

Trade union rep victimisation at Woolwich Ferry reaches ‘obscene levels’, says Unite

Unite: Ealing’s Labour council ‘actively helping’ Serco ‘hound’ union rep from civil enforcement job

St Mungos management escalate dispute by suspending Unite rep

Sign petition: Reinstate Gary Bolister sacked GMB rep at Islington Council

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

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

Sign petition to support Redbridge NEU Rep Keiran Mahon

Watch Reel News video: Huddersfield teachers strike to defend Louise Lewis

Defend NEU Exec member Tracy McGuire. Stop the victimization of Tracy!

NSSN sends our solidarity and congratulations to Kirstie Paton, her members in John Roan School and the NEU in Greenwich and nationally after successfully defending her job – watch Reel News video: NEU rep Kirstie Paton wins dismissal case: School safety matters..

 

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 the Queens Speech in December 2019 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 finish but has now been extended because of the 2nd lockdown. But it’s clear that the Tories are looking to end it asap.

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

BREAKING NEWS!! RMT response to Scottish Government decision (19 July) – RMT response to Scottish Government decision to permit CalMac to break collective bargaining agreements. CALMAC Union RMT today responded to the Scottish Government’s decision to permit CalMac to break collective bargaining agreements with all the recognised CalMac unions in order to time charter the Isle of Man registered MV Arrow freight ship. The vessel, managed by Seatruck Ferries, will conduct night sailings for a six-week period and can be withdrawn with 24 hour notice during that time read more

BREAKING NEWS!! RMT on new Bus report (19 July) – Bus Union RMT on a new report into the failure of the UK’s privatised bus network, by former UN Special Rapporteur Philip Alston. Commenting on the report, which found that the UK’s privatised bus system is ‘failing passengers’ and ‘undermining rights’, RMT General Secretary Mick Lynch said: “This report is completely right in its assessment that privatisation and deregulation has created a bus network which is ‘expensive, unreliable and dysfunctional’ and does not work for passengers…” read more

RMT raises alarm over Government Bill that criminalises seafarers (19 July) – RMT raises alarm over Government Bill that criminalises seafarers for saving lives at sea. SEAFARERS’ Union RMT has raised alarm over government legislation criminalising seafarers for saving lives at sea. The proposals, contained in the Government’s Nationality and Borders Bill, are due to be debated by MPs today read more

RMT warning of total chaos on eve of “Freedom Day” (18 July) – RMT warns that bogus Government claims over testing and isolation on rail and tube risk total chaos on eve of “Freedom Day”. Transport union RMT has warned that wholly bogus Government claims that rail and tube are part of a programme ‎of COVID testing rather than isolation is sewing widespread confusion amongst the workforce and risks unleashing total chaos on the eve of their so-called “Freedom Day” read more

Strike action by Scotrail staff solid again today (18 July) – Strike action by Scotrail staff in fight for equality solidly supported again today‎. RAIL UNION RMT said that‎ action by Scotrail staff in a fight for equality and workplace justice over enhanced payments for rest day working is being solidly supported again today‎ ‎across the network as the union accused Abellio and Transport Scotland of trying to grind loyal staff into the dust read more

Edinburgh Rail Gourmet strike rock solid (17 July) – Edinburgh Rail Gourmet strike rock solid again today in fight to end bullying. RAIL UNION RMT said today that Rail Gourmet staff at Edinburgh Waverley are solidly supporting the latest round of strike action this weekend in a fight to end a culture of workplace bullying and harassment. RMT General Secretary, Mick Lynch, said: “‎I am proud to report that our Edinburgh Rail Gourmet members are standing rock soild again this morning and are attacting widespread support for their action read more

Rail Gourmet members at Edinburgh Waverley are instructed not to book on for any shifts that commence between:

  • 06.00 hours on Wednesday 14th July 2021 until 05.59 hours on Thursday 15th July 2021
  • 06.00 hours on Saturday 17th July 2021 until 05.59 hours on Monday 19th July 2021
  • 06.00 hours Saturday 31st July 2021 until 05.59 hours on Sunday 1st August 2021 read more

Justice for Cleaners Demonstration (16 July) – RMT calls Justice for Cleaners Demonstration outside Parliament on 20th July. RMT has called a demonstration outside Parliament as part of the union’s campaign to end the privatisation of cleaning. The demonstration – Cleaners are Essential; Justice for Cleaners – will take place on 20 July at 12pm opposite Old Palace Yard, Houses of Parliament SW1A 2BE. Throughout the pandemic an unrecognised and low paid army of cleaners has gone into work and put their lives on the line to keep our public transport system safe. This army is almost entirely outsourced to private companies and because of this they are low paid, understaffed and overworked. New RMT research shows the real cost of outsourcing this essential service read more

RMT warns of threat of violence to staff over botched and confused approach to face coverings on public transport (14 July) – Transport union RMT warned today that staff on services will be placed at danger of abuse and assault due to the botched, confused and inconsistent messaging over face coverings. General Secretary Mick Lynch said; “Whilst we welcome the approach from the London Mayor this morning, which is consistent with the policies currently adopted in Scotland, Wales and on Eurostar, we now have the ludicrous position where a passenger travelling through London will have different rules on the tube and the main line services. There will also be a change of policy on trains at the Welsh and Scottish borders which is a total nonsense and will leave staff right at the sharp end and dangerously exposed when it comes to enforcement…” read more

RMT to take strike action on London Underground (13 July) – RMT to take strike action over London Underground plans to abolish Night Tube Train Drivers’ grade. TUBE UNION RMT said today that it will be taking strike action across the Tube network over plans by London Underground to abolish the Night Tube Train Drivers’ grade. Following a solid vote for action late last month and subsequent talks that failed to resolve this issue RMT has instructed members as follows;

All LUL Train Operators are instructed not to book on for any duty:

  • Commencing from 12:00 (noon) on 3.8.21 until 11.59 on 4.8.21
  • Commencing from 12:00 (noon) on 5.8.21 until 11.59 on 6.8.21
  • Commencing from 12:00 (noon) on 24.8.21 until 11.59 on 25.8.21
  • Commencing from 12:00 (noon) on 26.8.21 until 11.59 on 27.8.21 read more

SERCO Caledonian Sleeper refuse ACAS talks – RMT strike on SERCO Caledonian Sleeper remains rock solid three days in as company refuse ACAS talks. RAIL‎ UNION RMT said today (18 June) that strike action on SERCO Caledonian sleeper remains rock solid three days in as the company blocks union efforts to get ACAS talks underway to discuss ending the pay freeze they are imposing on employees. The current action will last for eleven days with the company preferring to reimburse fares, cancel services and create disruption for the travelling public rather than agreeing to union calls for ACAS talks with a view to negotiating a settlement. RMT members on Caledonian Sleeper are to take the following strike action by not booking on for any shifts that commence between:-

  • 11:59 hours on Tuesday 15th June 2021 to 11:59 hours on Saturday 26th June 2021

Furthermore, with effect from 12:00 hours on ‎Saturday 26th June 2021, until further notice, members are instructed:-

  • Not to work any overtime
  • Not to work on your rest day read more

Support East Midlands Railway strike – RMT senior conductors are set to strike every Sunday throughout the summer as part of the long running dispute. RMT have confirmed that nearly 200 Train Managers have also now voted overwhelmingly for action in a parallel dispute. That ballot result will now be considered by RMT’s executive. EMR Senior Conductor members are instructed not to book on for any shifts that commence between:

  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 27th June 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 4th July 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 11th July 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 18th July 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 25th July 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 1st August 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 8th August 2021
  • 0001 Hours and 2359 Hours on Sunday 15th August 2021 read more

 

TSSA

BREAKING NEWS!! TSSA warns of “deadly” freedoms (19 July) – As England enters step 4 of the unlocking process, transport and travel union TSSA warns of the need to maintain covid control measures to protect staff and passengers. England’s unlocking removes the legal requirement for protections such as wearing face coverings and social distancing, yet the messages are mixed read more

Covid-19: advice to reps on ORR Guidance (16 July) – Read here for TSSA advice to reps on ORR’s ‘Guidance for dutyholders reviewing controls that have been introduced to mitigate COVID-19 transmission.’ The UK Government published its Roadmap out of Lockdown in February 2021 that involved a cautious step by step approach to relax measures in England introduced in response to the Covid-19 Pandemic. Based on a strategy reliant on four criteria(1) including increasing vaccinations and any surge in infection rates not putting unsustainable pressure on the NHS, the fourth and final stage of the Lockdown was supposed to have taken place in June but was deferred for four weeks until Monday 19th July 2021 read more

Network Rail Knee Jerk Reaction Causes COVID Confusion (16 July) – There’s been a lot of anger and confusion from members in Network Rail this week after the company issued premature and contradictory covid guidance. Your TSSA union challenged NR on this and following the publication of legally binding ORR guidance on Wednesday we secured confirmation from NR yesterday that each and every measure that was in place prior to Monday’s announcement is still in place. Read on for full information read more

Great Western Railway: TSD Restructuring meeting (16 July) – TSSA met with GWR yesterday to discuss the Train Service Delivery (TSD) restructuring. Thank you to all the work members have done on the ground to support your union in continuing to represent you read more

Government “too little too late” on public transport mask wearing (15 July) – TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has described as “too little too late” industry guidance issued by the Department for Transport (DfT) that ‘the government is now expecting and recommending people wear face coverings in crowded settings which include public transport’. The move comes ahead of the removal of the majority of covid control measures from Monday (19 July), including scrapping social distancing measures and face coverings. Prime Minister Boris Johnson had said it was a matter of “personal responsibility” whether people wore face masks, and Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said he was “very relaxed” about transport operators imposing their own rules around masks. Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has told Transport for London that masks must remain in place across the capital’s transport system read more

TSSA welcomes call for TfL to keep face masks compulsory (14 July) – The biggest union in Transport for London (TfL) has welcomed calls from Mayor of London Sadiq Khan for face coverings to remain compulsory on public transport read more

TSSA response to Office of Rail and Road (ORR) annual rail safety assessments (13 July) – TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has raised concerns following the report by rail regulator – ORR – into the industry’s performance and safety record over the course of the covid pandemic. Overall, ORR found the rail industry responded extremely well to the COVID-19 pandemic whilst highlighting the importance of health and safety. The report says ‘Network Rail, train and tram operators reacted quickly and worked with ORR to implement control measures to enable social distancing and to keep the public and employees safe’. However, the ORR also stresses that ‘worker safety remains a top priority’ following the deaths of track workers in incidents at Surbiton and Roade as well as the derailment at Carmont in which three people died read more

 

Unite                      

BREAKING NEWS!! Unite warns of ‘heavy handed’ policing at Bexley bin picket as council ditches Serco (19 July) – Unite has raised concerns of ‘heavy handed’ policing against striking Serco refuse workers in Bexley. The concerns about the policy coincided with Bexley council announcing that Serco has lost the multimillion-pound refuse collection and street cleaning contract for the borough. Around 140 workers, who are members of Unite, began striking on 12 July, with the current round of strike action ending on 25 July. They have been holding daily pickets outside the Thames Road refuse depot in Crayford. Unite said police had intimidated the striking workers and have been heavy handed, despite the workers having a legal right to picket their workplace. Unite said this was a surprise because the union’s experience of the Metropolitan police during strikes is ‘generally positive’. After the strike began, Bexley council announced that Serco’s contract will not be renewed when it expires in October, with Countrystyle Recycling taking over instead. The council has pledged that staff on the contract, who will all be transferred from Serco, will be paid at least the London living wage in the future. Unite has consistently called for Serco to be removed from the contract and for staff to be paid properly. Serco refuse workers in Bexley earn much less than their counterparts in other areas of the capital. In neighbouring Greenwich refuse staff earn a minimum of £13 an hour, compared to just £10.25 paid by Serco in Bexley, which is below the London Living Wage. While low pay was one of the reasons the workers voted to strike, the dispute also centres around Serco’s refusal to pay around 50 staff back wages, with some workers owed thousands of pounds. This is because the company has for half a decade failed to include refuse staff on a stipulated pay progression scale. This had led to widespread pay disparities, such as long serving drivers being paid £22,000 a year even when new drivers are recruited on £28,000 a year. In addition, Unite has accused Serco of victimising union members through the unfair policing of its substance misuse policy, while providing no help or advice for those who may need it. Unite regional officer Ruth Hydon said: “We are pleased the council has finally listened to Unite, ditched Serco from this contract and agreed to pay refuse and street cleaning workers a reasonable wage. One element in this dispute has been won, but a number of other issues remain. Serco still owes our members tens of thousands in back pay and has not answered for the unfair use of its substance misuse policy to victimise staff…” read more

Support the Bexley bin strike – Send messages of support to [email protected]. To donate to the hardship fund, you can pay online to Unite LE/649 – sort code 60-83-01 and account number 20441911 read more

Barnoldswick workers to begin strike action as battle to save historic Rolls Royce plant is renewed (18 July) – A group of specialist engineers employed at the Rolls Royce plant in Barnoldswick, Lancashire will begin strike action tomorrow (Monday 19 July) after fears for the long term future of the site resurfaced. Members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, held a long running strike before Christmas in opposition to plans to scale back production at the factory, the cradle of the jet engine, and which workers believed spelt the long-term demise of the factory. Following the industrial action an agreement was reached between Rolls-Royce and Unite which guaranteed the future of the factory. Crucially, as part of the deal it was agreed that Barnoldswick would continue with a minimum headcount of 350 workers and a centre of excellence would be built to train the workers of tomorrow. However following a meeting in mid-May Unite was forced to issue a failure to agree notice with Rolls-Royce as local managers made it clear that they were not planning to reach the 350 headcount figure and the offload of work had been accelerated. Unite has been attempting to resolve the matter and seek reassurances about Barnoldswick’s long-term future, without success. This has left Unite and the workforce no option but to take strike action to end the fears that the site is once again under threat. The initial ballot of 17 engineers will lead to targeted strike action beginning on Monday 19 July with the final day of strike action on Friday 23 July which will affect the planned annual shutdown at the factory. Further strike action involving the engineers is scheduled to begin on Monday 9 August and ending on Friday 20 August, which will continue to cause major disruption at the factory. Unite will now ballot for strike action all of the remaining workers in the factory and manufacturing engineering staff who validate work at Barnoldswick and throughout the world. If they vote in favour of industrial action, strikes could begin late this summer. Unite regional officer Ross Quinn said: “Our members have been forced to take strike action as the long-term viability of Barnoldswick is once again under threat read more

Banbury coffee workers to vote on deal that removes ‘fire and rehire’ plan, Unite announces (19 July) – Workers at JDE (Jacobs Douwe Egberts) in Banbury, Oxfordshire will be balloted on a new pay and employment conditions’ package that removes the management’s proposal to ‘fire and rehire’ staff, Unite the union said today (Monday 19 July). Unite and the management have held three weeks of intensive talks in a bid to resolve the dispute affecting 291 employees at the Ruscote Avenue site which had seen a rolling programme of industrial action, currently suspended. The details of the package will remain confidential while it is communicated to Unite’s members this week. There will then be a ballot of the workers on whether to accept the deal which should be completed by the end of the first week of August read more

Unite workforce vote overwhelmingly for strike ballot at Balcas over chocolate bar insult for working through Covid lockdown (July 18) – Two mass workplace meetings at Enniskillen timber mill vote to initiate strike ballot for proper recognition of Covid lockdown effort. Management claims that Covid recognition payment is included in a two and a half-year old pay deal are completely rejected by workforce read more

Extend furlough and work with us on working protections, amid revelation of ‘one rule for the PM, others for everyone else’, Unite demands of chancellor (18 July) – The chancellor, Rishi Sunak, must be ready to extend furlough and work with trade unions to introduce short-time working protections, or risk tens of thousands of skilled jobs and our economic recovery, Unite, Britain and Ireland’s leading union, has said read more

Unite English Language Teachers to hold Dublin socially-distanced protest against unsafe reopening of schools (July 16) – Unite English Language Teachers to protest the early and unsafe re-opening of the English Language Education sector. When: Monday, July 19th 1pm; Where: Department of Further and Higher Education, Malborough Street, Dublin 1 read more

Unite National Black & Asian Ethnic Minority Committee Statement (16 July) – Unite’s National Black & Asian Ethnic Minority Committee (NBAEM) strongly condemns the racist abuse and comments posted on social media targeting England football players Marcus Rashford, Bukayo Saka and Jadon Sancho read more

St Mungo’s strikes end after independent review into bullying grievances agreed (15 July) – Strikes at the St Mungo’s housing charity have been called off after the management agreed to an independent review into bullying grievances raised by staff, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Thursday 15 July). Unite warned there is still a ‘culture of fear’ at the charity that staff will be disciplined or suspended for speaking out about bullying or inappropriate or concerning behaviour. This in turn could lead to safeguarding issues, which is of particular concern in hostels that house vulnerable residents. Around a dozen members of Unite, who are responsible for day-to-day repairs of the charity’s housing units, have been on all out strike since 22 April. The strike was called after several staff grievances over bullying against property services senior management were dismissed. Following three months of strike action, the workers voted to return to work after it was agreed that an independent review will take place over the charity’s handling of the grievances and that Unite will be involved in the review read more

Lancashire biomedical scientists to hold second strike ballot in pay upgrade dispute (15 July) – Biomedical scientists at a Lancashire NHS trust are being re-balloted for strike action in an upgrading pay row, after bosses failed to ‘meaningfully engage’ in talks with Acas, the conciliation service. The 21 biomedical scientists at East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust have been on strike since 31 May and that action is due to end on Wednesday 28 July. The strike ballot opens on Wednesday 21 July and closes on Tuesday 27 July and could result in industrial action into the autumn. The crux of the dispute is the ‘bad faith’ that the trust management has shown when it reneged on the 2019 pay upgrade deal that it originally agreed to read more

Unite welcomes West Yorkshire mayor’s face mask decision but highlights confusion and chaos caused by government’s dangerous policy (14 July) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, which represents thousands of bus workers in Yorkshire, has welcomed the announcement that face masks will remain compulsory in West Yorkshire bus stations. The union warned, however, that the patchwork protection of compulsory mask wearing that is emerging in the UK is creating chaos and confusion for workers and passengers alike. Unite said this is a direct result of the government’s reckless announcement that face coverings will no longer be compulsory on public transport from next Monday (July 19) read more

Pay victory for Stadler workers ends Tyne and Wear Metro maintenance dispute (14 July) – A dispute between Tyne and Wear Metro train maintenance workers and their employer, Stadler, has ended following a pay offer from the company, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Wednesday 14 July). Strikes scheduled with the RMT union (who also have members at the company) at the beginning of July in response to a pay freeze were called off to allow the offer to be put to around 30 Unite members employed by Stadler. The workers voted in favour of the deal, which includes a £750 tax-free payment for staff to transfer from weekly to monthly wages and a guaranteed pay increase for 2022. In October 2020, Stadler won a £300 million contract to build 42 new Metro trains, rebuild the Gosforth depot and maintain the Nexus Tyne and Wear train stock for 35 years read more

Hospitality workers to protest over lack of action on fair tips at Department of Business (14 July) – Workers in the hospitality sector will stage a protest outside the Department of Business tomorrow (Thursday 15 July) in protest at the government’s failure to introduce long-promised fair tips legislation read more

Unite welcomes Mayor of London’s public transport face mask decision (14 July) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, which represents over 20,000 bus workers in London, has welcomed the announcement that the wearing of masks and face coverings will remain mandatory on the capital’s public transport network read more

Unite the union rejects latest unsafe practice of the Road Safety Authority (14 July) – Road Safety Authority threatens to cancel driving tests without refund if test candidates do not accept a third person in the confined space of a car. The RSA have begun the process of training newly appointed driver testers which Unite Approved Driving Instructors Branch welcomes as an active measure to tackle the backlog of 225,000 people currently waiting on a driving test or theory tests read more

Unite responds to Orkney Flotta Oil Terminal redundancy proposals (13 July) – Unite Scotland has today (13 July) responded to the proposals announced by Repsol Sinopec (RSRUK) that 14 jobs are at risk of redundancy at the Orkney Flotta Oil Terminal. The trade union has been in dialogue with the company over the organisational ‘review’ in order to mitigate the potential for redundancies and has pledged to do all it can to support the Orkney workforce. Flotta is operated by the Spanish-Chinese joint venture firm read more

Trade union rep victimisation at Woolwich Ferry reaches ‘obscene levels’, says Unite – The victimisation of two Unite trade union reps by the management of the Woolwich Ferry has reached ‘obscene levels’, the union said today (Tuesday 6 July). Unite the union said the case of the victimisation of reps at Woolwich Ferry, at the epicentre of a long-running industrial dispute, was one of the worst currently on Unite’s ‘books’ and called on the Transport for London (TfL) bosses at the ferry ‘to drag themselves into the 21st century in terms of progressive employment relations’. A total of 57 Unite members are taking part in a rolling programme of strike action this month over the victimisation issue; 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 – these are issues which have arisen since TfL took back control from the discredited Briggs Marine Contractors Ltd in January this year. The next 24 hour strikes are scheduled for 9,12,16,19,23,26 and 30 July. Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “Unite now has two reps representing our members at the ferry operation who have been through a gruelling – and unjustified – disciplinary process…” read more

Serco Ealing traffic wardens begin two weeks of all out strike action with townhall rally – Serco traffic wardens will begin two weeks of strike action that will result in a ‘parking free for all’  in Ealing with a rally outside the town hall tomorrow. Since May 5, more than 40 civil enforcement officers have taken intermittent strike action over Serco’s offer of severance to elected Unite representatives, activists, and lay members, made to undermine trade union organisation and collective consultation. The fresh strikes mean that there will be no parking enforcement in Ealing between 30 June and 14 July. The dispute is also over Serco refusal 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 demonstration outside of Ealing town hall is being held on the same day as Unite and Serco enter talks under the auspices of the conciliation service Acas read more

Reading hospital security guards renew strikes in July, as Unite calls on NHS bosses to take them back ‘in-house’ – NHS bosses should take the security staff at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading back ‘in house’, after the guards announced new strike dates for July against their outsourced employer Kingdom Services Group Ltd. Unite the union said the new strike dates would run from 07.00 Monday 12 July until 24.00 Saturday 31 July, after the 20 security guards voted by 84 per cent for strike action. The guards, who provide security for the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust, have been locked in a ‘David and Goliath’ pay and conditions battle with their employer, resulting in a wave of strikes since December last year. Because of the way that Kingdom Services has treated its staff, Unite is urging the trust to take the security guards back ‘in house’ under NHS management when the current three-year contract ends on 31 December this year. As the NHS celebrates its 73rd birthday on Monday (5 July), campaigners wishing to keep it out of the hands of profit-hungry companies, such as Kingdom, will be staging a march and rally in Reading on Saturday (3 July), starting at 12.00 from Royal Berkshire Hospital to Forbury Gardens in the town centre where there will be speeches 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

Two weeks of talks to resolve Banbury coffee workers ‘fire and rehire’ dispute, Unite announces – Unite the union and the management of JDE (Jacobs Douwe Egberts) will be holding two weeks of intensive talks in a bid to resolve the ‘fire and rehire’ dispute at the plant in Banbury, Oxfordshire, the union announced today (Friday 25 June). Unite will now suspend the industrial action that has been running since the beginning of May for the next fortnight, while JDE has agreed to push back the implementation of ‘fire and rehire’ plans affecting 291 employees until 13 September read more

Email messages of support and donate to the hardship fund via [email protected]. Follow #Banbury300 @Banbury3001 on twitter

Production at historic Shropshire wheel factory will ‘roll to a halt’ during pay strikes – Production at an historic Shropshire wheel factory will ‘roll to a halt’ during strikes over pay and redundancy packages, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Wednesday 23 June). Unite members employed at GKN Wheels and Auto Structures in Telford will strike in July over the company’s refusal to implement a pay rise without workers first accepting detrimental changes to a collective redundancy agreement. The strikes, conducted in conjunction with GMB members at the site, will impact wheel production at the factory, which produces off road wheels for clients such as JCB. Unite members will hold three 24 hour strikes at GKN Wheels and Auto Structures in Telford on 5, 12 and 19 July. The historic factory, which is more than 100 years old and produced Spitfire planes during the Second World War, was bought by private equity firm Aurelius in 2020. Unite regional officer Jason Richards said: “Our members are incensed at being offered a pay rise only on the condition that the collective redundancy agreement is weakened…” read more

Sullom Voe Terminal talks break down as industrial action set to begin – Unite Scotland can confirm that talks to prevent industrial action at Sullom Voe Terminal have ended with no movement on the part of Shetland Islands Council (SIC) to resolve the dispute. Around 40 towage workers employed by SIC are set to begin an overtime ban on 5 July which will continue over a seven-week period (see notes to editors). Unite has confirmed that if no progress takes place in the coming weeks, then strike action remains a possibility which would represent a major escalation in the dispute. The overtime ban will ‘hugely disrupt’ the multi-million pound contract to bring oil tankers on to the shore for oil processing and also on production for the Brent and Ninian fields. In April, Unite announced that towage workers on a return of 86.5 per cent voted by 87.1 per cent to take industrial action. The dispute revolves around workers being denied a ‘service award’ after their transfer to SIC in 2006. The towage workers have been told by SIC that they will not receive the long service award if they fulfil 25 years’ service, which is the equivalent of one month’s salary like other council workers. Instead, the workers will continue to receive a flat rate of £250 read more

Engineers at Leicestershire’s Brush Electrical strike over fire and rehire cuts of up to £15,000 – Engineers employed by Brush Electrical Machines, owned by venture capitalists Melrose and based in Ashby de-la Zouch, will stage summer strikes in response to ‘fire and rehire’ pay cuts of up to £15,000, Unite said today (Tuesday 11 May 2021). Unite, the UK’s leading union, said the 30 engineers, who service generators around the world, voted overwhelmingly in favour of striking and will stage industrial action every day from 25 May to 16 August. The proposed contracts include reductions to overtime rates, allowances, holidays and other terms and conditions that would result in a pay cut of between £10,000 and £15,000 a year. The engineers’ jobs have been threatened if they do not sign the new contracts, which will leave them on pay rates ‘well below the industry standard’. The union said the strikes will ‘cause havoc to the firm’s worldwide servicing schedule and serious inconvenience to its international clients’. Parent company Melrose has a reputation for targeting workers and viable operations to boost short-term profits read more

 

PCS

BREAKING NEWS!! Pensions robbery: the real cost to members (19 July) – The government is blatantly attempting to snatch away members’ rights to have their pension contributions reduced by at least 2% and see their benefits improved – but PCS is resisting and planning legal action. PCS members are being robbed of around £1,000 each from their salaries as well as improvements to pensions benefits that they are owed. Coming on top of another unnecessary and insulting pay freeze, members will be furious about this deliberate move by the government. In the coming months, we will be asking you to get involved in our campaign to right this wrong. Why is this happening? Because there has been outrageous and unjustifiable government interference in the Civil Service Pension Scheme’s valuation and cost cap processes in recent years read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Phased return to HMRC workplaces (19 July) – PCS seeks safety assurances and will discuss the impact of the latest guidance on ‘return to workplaces’ published by BEIS. HMRC have confirmed the arrangements that will be in place from 19 July when the Covid-19 restrictions are lifted in England. Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales are producing their own guidance. The employer has confirmed that members can continue to work from home. If you choose to return to the office, this can only happen following a discussion with your manager, using the appropriate Toolkit read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Staying strong at the DVLA (19 July) – DVLA strikers gain massive UK-wide support as they defend their safety and wellbeing with sustained strikes that our general secretary calls “some of the most important industrial action that we’ve had in PCS’s history”. PCS members at the DVLA in Swansea have stayed united and resolved with sustained strike action over several weeks since April, as they continue to stand up for Covid health and safety in their workplaces read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Strong support for first day of ISS strike (19 July) – Members working for ISS in facilities management at BEIS began three days of strike action today. This morning’s picket line outside the BEIS offices had an excellent turnout with around 50 members, most of the branch, turning out read more

Support the ISS strikers at BEIS (19 July) – Our members working for the outsourced contractor ISS at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy in London have today begun a 3-day strike over low pay and Covid safety. Cleaners, security guards and other support staff employed by ISS are taking strike action after delivering a resounding yes vote in a PCS industrial action ballot last month. Our members voted 97.3% in favour of strike action on an impressive 82% turnout. Our low-paid members working for ISS in BEIS offices in London are demanding:

  • An end to low pay and improved working conditions
  • Extra bonuses for working through lockdown
  • Annual leave entitlement owed from last year.

PCS also has concerns around Covid safety of staff and is calling on ISS to agree a return-to-work protocol. The 3-day strike coincides with so-called “freedom day” when all Covid restrictions in England are officially lifted despite the fact the vaccine has not been fully rolled out. PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka said: “ISS is treating its staff appallingly and despite repeated strike actions in recent years, it seems the contractor has not learnt its lesson. Support staff have had enough of poor pay and the least they deserve is a decent rise and to be treated with dignity at work…” We have picket lines outside 10 Victoria Street and Fleetbank House in London today, tomorrow and Wednesday read more

PCS secures victory as pay cut for Southbank staff stopped (16 July) – In a final round of talks with management at London’s Southbank Centre, who were facing an angry and united PCS membership, the Southbank has today confirmed they will no longer be cutting the pay of the Hayward host role. Following our campaign, and the public outcry it caused, the Southbank Centre has today confirmed it will no longer be cutting the pay of the Hayward host role read more

Royal Parks cleaners vote for strike action (15 July) – Contracted-out staff at Royal Parks will take strike action later this month over pay, conditions and demanding the reinstatement of a sacked member of staff. We are calling for their contracts to brought into line with directly employed Royal Parks staff including sick pay parity and decent pensions. Just Ask Estates Limited, which has a contract to provide toilet cleaning services for the parks, has refused to recognise or engage with the union. The company sacked staff member Margaret Lokko despite the fact she informed her manager that she was delayed returning from Ghana due to the global Covid pandemic travel restrictions. With visitor numbers likely to soar with the lifting of Covid restrictions on 19 July, any industrial action is likely to have a significant impact on accessibility to toilets for tourists read more

Response to the permanent secretary’s plans for returning to office working in DWP (14 July) – We have told DWP that we believe the government’s decision to remove, at this stage, the legal safeguards that have protected society from Covid-19 is dangerous and reckless. PCS has been in ongoing talks with the DWP about how they respond to the government’s strategy read more

Dispute resolution talks over jobcentres (14 July) – PCS remain in dispute with the DWP following the consultative ballot of members that work in Jobcentres. Formal dispute resolution consultation began between PCS and members of the DWP executive team yesterday. We were clear that members feel even less safe about face to face working now than they did at the time of the ballot as a result of the rapid rise in infections due to the Delta variant of the corona virus read more

Shapps should back a deal as DVLA dispute continues (14 July) – As our DVLA campaign for Covid safety is continuing this week with staff in the casework and enforcement group out tomorrow and Friday, members explain why they continue their action. Our members continue to take targeted strike action and it’s having an impact with huge backlogs forming and massive delays to licences being processed. We know a deal can be done and nearly was at the start of last month, it is sheer ideological resolve on the part of transport minister Grant Shapps that the dispute rolls on read more

Home Office pensions and allowances update (14 July) – There are longstanding issues regarding the Home Office identifying allowances from which pension contributions have not been collected, in some cases dating back as far as 2002 read more

PCS rejects racism and discrimination and stands in solidarity with Black members (13 July) – Members will have seen the appalling response from some sections of society following England’s defeat in the European Championship Final on Sunday evening read more

ISS staff in BEIS deliver impressive ballot result – Cleaners, security guards and other support staff employed by contractor ISS are one step closer to taking strike action after delivering a resounding yes vote in a PCS industrial action ballot. Our members voted 97.3% in favour of strike action on an impressive 82% turnout. Our low-paid members working for ISS in BEIS offices in London are demanding:

  • an end to low pay and improved working conditions
  • extra bonuses for working through lockdown
  • annual leave entitlement owed from last year.

PCS also has concerns around Covid safety of staff and is calling on ISS to agree a return to work protocol read more  BEIS workers are on strike this coming Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday July 19-21

 

GMB

Sign petition: Reinstate Gary Bolister sacked GMB rep at Islington Council

GMB prisoner transport staff stage protest over real terms pay cut (19 July) – Prison transport drivers have worked throughout the pandemic, transporting and escorting some of society’s most challenging individuals.

GMB members for Serco prisoner transport are set to protest outside the Royal Courts of Justice after the company hit them with a real terms pay cut. The demonstration takes place as follows:

When: 12 noon on Thursday, July 22 2021

Where: The Royal Courts of Justice, Strand, London, WC2A 2LL

The drivers, who work for Serco prisoner transport were offered a pay rise of just 0.5% – plus £300 – in the first year and 1.25% in the second year read more

Health & social care workers self-isolation exempt: ‘one rule for them, one rule for us’ (19 July) – Our patients are vulnerable, if we infect them we will kill them. GMB Union members working for the NHS are appalled by this morning’s Government announcement that heath and social care workers will be exempt from self-isolation – for work purposes only – after being pinged by the app read more

GMB secures future for 300 workers at JCB in ‘stunning turnaround’ (14 July) – Hundreds of temporary workers to move to permanent contracts thanks to GMB Union work. Hundreds of workers at JCB on temporary contracts have been moved to full-time work thanks to a campaign by GMB Union representatives. The 300 new jobs, spread across eight sites in the West Midlands, signal a remarkable turnaround for a workforce that was facing more than 900 permanent and 720 temporary job cuts at JCB at the start of the pandemic read more

MPs must wear masks to protect Parliamentary staff, unions tell Speaker (14 July) – This is a stark example of how rules in Parliament apply only to some and not to others. MPs must be made to wear masks to protect Parliamentary staff, unions have told Commons speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle MP. New guidelines, set to come into force on July 19, make mask wearing compulsory for staff but only ‘encouraged’ for MPs. A joint letter from GMB, the House Trade Union Side, Unite sent today urges the speaker to reconsider read more

Soaring inflation leaves public sector workers facing ‘ruthless pay cut’ (14 July) – Ministers could set the ‘levelling up’ tone by ensuring NHS and local government workers aren’t left on poverty pay. Today’s soaring inflation figures lay bare the ‘ruthless’ pay cuts NHS and local government workers face. The ONS reported today [Wednesday 14 July] that the RPI measure reached 3.9 per cent in June – up from 3.3 per cent in May. This was the highest rate since January 2018. The CPI and CPIH measures also jumped to 2.5 and 2.4 per cent respectively read more

GMB warn NHS Property Services not to change members terms or pay across Berkshire hospitals (14 July) – Our members want written, cast-iron assurance that at no time will NHSPS look to make changes to job titles, job roles, banding or pay within any operational or organisational review, as is currently planned, say GMB Union read more

Hundreds of England fans strike at Spitfire company over pay dispute – GKN needs to show the sense of English fair play embodied by the Three Lions and respect the hard-won rights of their workers says GMB Union. Hundreds of England fans will go on strike today at a famous spitfire company in a dispute over pay. More than 200 long-service workers have voted overwhelmingly to strike at GKN Sankey in Telford after months of attacks on their onslaught on redundancy packages and pay read more.  The strike will begin on Monday July 5, with more dates to be announced

GMB backs call for TfL face coverings to remain compulsory (14 July) – Transport workers and those who have to travel on the tube deserve to be safe says GMB Union. GMB Union has backed Mayor of London Sadiq Khan’s call for TfL to keep the requirement to wear face coverings on public transport as a condition of travel on all TfL services after July 19 read more

 

Unison

Health workers increasingly concerned at continued government stalling on NHS pay (17 July) – Sara Gorton says it’s more than 100 days since staff were due rise. More than 100 days after health workers ​were due a wage rise, and almost 11 months since UNISON appealed to Boris Johnson ​to grant them a £2,000 increase, ​the government has yet to deliver, says the union today (Saturday). ​Health staff are ​increasingly worried that ​the government won’t announce an NHS pay rise before ​MPs disappear next week for their six-week summer break, says UNISON. ​It’s now been three weeks since ministers received the ​NHS pay review body ​(PRB) ​report and the delay is making health workers feel like an afterthought, the union added read more

UNISON condemns ‘slap in the face’ for Scottish local government workers (16 July) – Scottish unions write joint letter condemning Scottish Government’s failure to provide funding for proper pay rise. The trade unions representing 100,000 local government workers across Scotland have written to the Scottish Government condemning its decision not to provide additional funding to the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA) to improve the local government pay offer. UNISON, Unite and GMB also hit out at reports that, in their meeting with COSLA, government ministers allegedly argued that local government workers were “not on a par with health workers” and so could not expect a similar offer. All three unions are currently preparing for formal industrial action ballots on local government pay, after their members overwhelmingly rejected the offer made by COSLA in March read more

UNISON praises police decision to retain COVID protections (15 July) – The decision was taken by the National Police Chiefs Council for England and Wales and will help to safeguard operational capability. UNISON has welcomed yesterday’s decision by the National Police Chiefs Council for England and Wales to keep all existing COVID-19 protections in place for the police workforce after 19 July read more

Important wins and ongoing battles across the union (14 July) – Ongoing high profile pay campaigns, industrial action and the ongoing fight against racism and hatred highlighted at union’s national executive council read more

Tower Hamlets Unison: #BuildTheBallot for Further Action • Opens Thursday 24 June – By a thumping majority, our members rejected management’s most recent proposal to end the Trade Dispute on Tower Rewards. Shamefully, those terms were imposed on us last summer at the height of the pandemic, by our Labour council using “Sack and Re-engage” measures that have been widely condemned and that Kier Starmer says he will outlaw read more

 

CWU

Union wins ‘vital breathing space’ in fight to save Crown Post Office network (July 16) – Moratorium agreed stopping any closures or franchises for the rest of 2021, with talks planned to agree a future long-term strategy. “This is a crucial opportunity to fundamentally shift the direction of the Post Office,” is how CWU assistant secretary Andy Furey describes the six-month truce in the long-running battle to preserve our nation’s Crown Post Office service…” read more

Pressure mounts on Capita over Bury staff betrayal (July 14) – Simultaneous protests have taken place in London and Bury to intensify pressure on Capita to deliver genuine options for North West employees who are convinced they face redundancy on account of the impending closure of their call centre. Despite Capita’s insistence that the planned axing of its Bury contact centre in September doesn’t constitute a redundancy situation because options open to displaced employees include transferring with their present jobs to another site in Preston Brook, the stark reality is that the notoriously difficult 70-mile round road trip with no good public transport options would render this impossible for most read more

‘Final’ pay offer for ISS members goes out to ballot (July 13) – Challenging but businesslike pay negotiations on behalf of ISS members working on the BT contact have delivered a proposed settlement for 2021 that would see nearly three quarters of employees receive a consolidated rise of 2.15% read more

 

FBU

BREAKING NEWS!! FBU fears underreporting of Covid infections in the fire service as minister fails to provide data (19 July) – The government has failed to provide details of the number of Covid deaths and disease reported by employers in the fire service, after being asked to do so in a Parliamentary Question and through an FOI to the Health and Safety Executive. This has aroused concern in the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) that the government is hiding failure of fire and rescue service employers to report Covid figures properly. Employers, including in the fire service, have a legal obligation to report cases of Covid exposure, infection and deaths to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) where exposure occurs as a result of a person’s work. The TUC has previously expressed concerns that widespread underreporting in relation to this legal obligation may be taking place across sectors, something the HSE has accepted read more

 

NEU

Suspend Academization of Moulsecoomb Primary – On Tuesday 6th July, members of NEU, GMB and UNISON will be taking strike action and calling on The Pioneer Academy to withdraw as the sponsor. On the same day, parents, staff and members of the community  have hired a bus to visit the DFE to deliver a petition. We want to show Gavin Williamson that staff across Brighton and Hove schools and services want the academization suspended. Please respond to the three questions here so we can add your name to the petition

Coronavirus: school outbreaks remain high (15 July) – NEU comment as latest PHE data shows school outbreaks remain high read more

 

UCU

Updates on latest UCU disputes

Petition calling for fair funding and online learning

University of Sheffield staff to ballot for industrial action over plans to close archaeology department (15 July) – Closure railroaded through university’s governance processes. Members of UCU voted to ballot for industrial action over plans to shut the University of Sheffield’s archaeology department, which has been targeted for closure by the University Executive Board (UEB). Archaeology at Sheffield has been ranked as the seventh best archaeology department in the UK. In a meeting of over 200 members, University of Sheffield UCU voted to ballot for sustained industrial action during the autumn semester if the university does not reverse its decision to close the archaeology department read more

Staff vote to strike over pay in 15 further education colleges (15 July) – Members of UCU in 15 further education colleges in England have voted for strike action. Colleges were balloted in a row over pay. Staff at three colleges that are part of Capital City College Group, London, have also voted to strike over working conditions and compulsory redundancies alongside pay. An overwhelming 89% of members who voted backed strike action, on an average turnout of over 62% (62.6%). UCU said the turnout and vote for action reflected the anger staff feel over having their pay held down for so long. The pay ballots covered Carshalton College, City College Plymouth, City of Bristol College, City of Liverpool College, Croydon College, Kingston College, Lambeth College, Merton College, New College Swindon, Sheffield College, Wandsworth & Tooting College and Weymouth College. The working conditions, compulsory redundancies and pay ballot covered City & Islington College, Westminster Kingsway College and the College of North East London. Staff are angry that employer body, the Association of Colleges (Aoc) recommended a pay offer of just 1% in December 2020, a decision that was criticised by UCU, Unite the Union, Unison, GMB and the National Education Union (NEU) read more

Union calls on Warwickshire College Group to stop its campus closure plan and cancel job cuts (14 July) – UCU has called on Warwickshire College Group (WCG) to rethink its decision to shut down and sell off its Malvern Hills campus, whilst reducing and selling off a large part of the Evesham campus. In a letter to the college’s chief executive officer, the union has accused WCG of failing to consult properly and ignoring the views of the local community, many of whom have signed a petition condemning the plans. The union has also called on the college to guarantee that there will be no compulsory redundancies as part of the plans. WCG plans to close its Malvern Hills campus completely next month, while also cutting its Evesham College site by two-thirds, and moving Supported Learning, Health and Social care and Access to HE courses to another site 5.5 miles away.  Students and staff currently based at Malvern Hills will be forced to travel over 20 miles to access their education.  UCU is seriously concerned how growth of provision will be limited in Evesham, a town where the population is expanding. Protests were held earlier this month at the Malvern Hills campus as the college closed its doors for what staff, students and the local community fear could be the last time read more

Scrapping BTECs ‘disastrous’ for widening participation (14 July) – UCU said proposals to end BTECs would harm access to education. The union was responding to plans from government to reform post-16 qualifications. The plans include ending BTECs and making apprenticeships, A levels and new T Levels the main options available to students 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.

 

POA

Following horrific attack on an HMP Swansea officer the POA urge HMPPS to remove razors from prisons (15 July) – POA National Chairman Mark Fairhurst believes that the directors of HMPPS must act now to remove razor blades from prisons in England and Wales. Razor blades have been a key part of manufactured weapons in our prisons. Prison Officers and prisoners have suffered horrific injury’s when attacked with these improvised weapons. Razor blades are also used by prisoners in desperate acts of self-harm that range from self-cutting to acts of self-mutilation, this has an impact on the prisoner, other prisoners, the prisoner’s family, and the prison staff who must deal with often horrific injuries. The removal of razor blades and the associated accepted culture is long overdue read more

 

NUJ

BREAKING NEWS!! Spyware Pegasus helped target over 180 journalists, global report reveals (19 July) – The NUJ and IFJ condemn all attempts to secretly interfere with journalists’ communications. A report by Forbidden Stories – a worldwide collaborative journalism investigation- has revealed that at least 180 journalists across the world have been spied on using Pegasus software, a tool developed by the Israeli cybersurveillance company NSO and sold to a number of clients, including states across the world read more

BREAKING NEWS!! UK government conflates journalism and espionage in latest Home Office consultation (19 July) – The proposals on which the government is consulting create clear new detriments for journalists and journalism read more

Government should show more pride in LGBT+ people (19 July) – The NUJ has signed a TUC letter taking the government to task over its inaction to address the inequality experienced by the LGBT+ community who face discrimination at work read more

NUJ sends condolences to the family and friends of Peter R De Vries (15 July) – The Dutch crime reporter who was shot on the streets of Amsterdam last Thursday has died read more

MPs express concern over cuts to BBC Parliamentary unit (14 July) – Slashing staff will mean less local coverage as the corporation also plans to scale down broadcast of party conferences. An early day motion noting concern about staff cuts in the unit which supplies local BBC TV and radio stations with news and clips of their MP speaking about local issues has won cross-party backing read more

NUJ to report incidents of members attacked by so-called England fans (14 July) – The union is to report incidents of violence against journalists and videographers covering the Euros championship to an inquiry opened by the football governing body UEFA read more

 

Prospect

Air traffic controllers to strike over remote towers (15 July) – Prospect members working in air traffic control for Highlands and Islands Airports Limited (HIAL) are to stage a one day strike on 29 July over plans to centralise air traffic control in Inverness read more

 

USDAW

Usdaw members at Weetabix in Kettering vote unanimously for industrial action in a dispute over shift payments (13 July) – Usdaw is the trade union for Weetabix production workers and today members at the AP4 plant, which produces cereal bars, have voted unanimously for industrial action. Usdaw anticipates that the first 24 hour stoppage will be called within a week from 28 July 2021. It is anticipated that further 24 or 48 hour stoppages will take place on a periodic basis until a resolution is found read more

Government’s ‘back to work’ guidance weakens safety and risks abuse of shopworkers says Usdaw (14 July) – Retail trade union Usdaw has criticised Government guidance issued today for being vague and not enough to keep workers safe. The union urges retailers and customers to put safety first read more

Striking Usdaw members at DHL/M&S Long Eaton start a third 24-hour stoppage on Thursday and have gained support from MPs – Members of the retail logistics trade union Usdaw will begin a third 24-hour stoppage at the Long Eaton DHL / Marks and Spencer distribution centre at 5.15am on Thursday 1 July. Alex Norris MP (Labour/Co-op, Nottingham North) and Paddy Lillis (Usdaw General Secretary) will join protesters supporting the picket line at 12 noon. Lilian Greenwood MP (Labour, Nottingham South) has also pledged her support. The continuing industrial action affects a Marks & Spencer third-party logistics contract, operated by DHL at Long Eaton in Derbyshire. Usdaw members voted by over 90% in favour of strike action in a dispute about the amount of redundancy pay that long serving staff will receive when the site closes at the end of July read more

BCM Fareva staff vote decisively to strike – Usdaw urges the Nottingham based employer to withdraw their ‘fire and rehire’ threat – Usdaw members have voted by over 90% in favour of industrial action at BCM Fareva, the Nottingham based manufacturer of consumer pharma and beauty products for leading brands including Boots. BCM Fareva has proposed slashing members’ terms and conditions, including sick pay and redundancy payment provisions, while pre-emptively threatening to ‘fire and rehire’ staff if agreement cannot be reached on the proposed changes. Usdaw has informed the company of the result and again calls on them to avoid industrial action by removing their threat to ‘fire and rehire’ read more

 

UVW

VICTORY! VICTORY! VICTORY! Concierge & cleaners at the luxury housing development at West End Quay have won a huge victory after their employer, FirstPort, capitulated to a whole host of demands to avoid massive strike action – Workers at the development will receive “bonus” payments of nearly £2,000 each, time and a half for overtime, Contractual Sick Pay, preferential in-house hiring amongst other matters. Furthermore, measures have been put in place to end the endemic bullying that was taking place at the site. FirstPort originally would only offer the workers mediation via ACAS without union involvement and with no commitments on any issue, but after the workers rejected this and balloted for strike action a frenzied round of negotiations took place. UVW members walked away from these negotiations multiple times, willing as they were to fight to the bitter end, before the company offered the deal they were happy with. Our members showed incredible unity and courage throughout this dispute and it was their strength and organisation that united residents and other workers together to back them in their fight. Workers at the site now pledge to stay vigilant, organised and fight for union recognition UVW Facebook page

 

SIPTU (Ireland)

Serious risk to public from shortage of firefighters in Dublin Fire Brigade (16 July) – SIPTU members in the Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB) have highlighted the crisis situation in the service today (Friday, 16th July) due to a lack of trained firefighters resulting in several vehicles being unavailable for deployment read more

SIPTU members to take industrial action in Doyle Shipping Group at Dublin Port (9 July) – SIPTU members employed by Doyle Shipping Group (DSG) at Dublin Port have voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action in a dispute concerning their pay, terms and conditions of employment and safety concerns within their workplace read more

 

 

Other News

Hazards Conference 2021 – Hazards Conference will be online again this year

Saturday 31 July 2021: 10am-3.30pm – register

Sunday 1 August 2021: 10am-1.00pm – register

You will need to sign up to Saturday and Sunday separately read more

 

 

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

NUJ calls for end of harassment of journalists by Iranian state read more

IWGB: Colombia Solidarity Statement read more

 

Diary

Wednesday July 21st – NSSN meeting on Freeports

Sunday September 12th – 1pm NSSN TUC Rally

 

 

 

CONTACT US

PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]

 

TWITTER – https://twitter.com/NSSN_AntiCuts

FACEBOOK NSSN GROUP   or STOP The CUTS  Likes page

ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE