610: Liverpool dockers win as strike wave spreads to public sector

November 15, 2022 in Bulletins

The NSSN sends our solidarity and congratulations to Unite and its members at Peel Ports in Liverpool, who have secured an inflation-busting pay deal after taking strike action over nearly two months.

At the same time, the growing strike wave is spreading to the public sector. Just days after the UCU announced that its members have voted for strike action in higher education, NEU, EIS, PCS and the RCN have all had industrial action ballots voting for action. In addition, FBU members have voted to reject the employers’ pay offer and will be moving to a strike vote.

And unions are co-ordinating action. On 30th November, CWU in Royal Mail will be on strike, as will the UCU and NEU members in sixth form colleges. The UCU has called a London demo on that day. The NSSN calls on all workers who can, especially those on strike, to join the march as well as all those furious at the Tory cost of living squeeze and their planned brutal cuts.

UCU National Strike Rally – 1pm Wednesday 30th November Kings Cross rail station London

Liverpool dockers celebrate major victory after Unite secures pay deal worth between 14.3% and 18.5% (10 Nov) – Inflation-busting deal ends wave of Peel Ports strike action that began in September. Liverpool dockers employed by Peel Ports have won pay hikes between 14 per cent and 18 per cent plus, according to job grades, after a deal was secured by Unite, the dockers’ union. At a mass meeting held today (Thursday) at the docks, around 600 workers voted overwhelmingly in favour of the deal, which was negotiated earlier this week. The dock workers will now resume normal work duties, ending a wave of escalating strike action that began on 19 September. The win involved the resolute strike action of Unite members but also the leverage of ‘strikes plus’ read more

Liverpool dock strike

Liverpool dock strike

 

The TUC is organising town hall rallies around the country. Find your local event here.

‘The working class is back as a movement’ – Enough is Enough read more on CWU website. People can find out about events and how to join the campaign via the Enough is Enough website

 

NSSN news

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]

The NSSN is developing a campaign pack for social care, which we hope to make available in the not-too-distant future for supporters to use in their localities. As part of this, communications officer Dave Gorton is keen to hear from supporters who:

(1) work in social care (either local authority, private or independently provided)

(2) represent social care workers for a trade union

(3) are in need of social care provision themselves or act as an (unpaid/underpaid) carer for a family member

Dave can be contacted in the first instance via [email protected]

 

Union News

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RMT

RMT National Dispute Fund

BREAKING NEWS!! RMT renews national rail strike mandate for another 6 months (16 Nov) – Rail union RMT today announced it had beaten the anti-trade union laws yet again with a stunning mandate for more strike action on the railways. Across both Network Rail and 14 train operating companies, the average turnout was 70.2% with a ‘yes’ vote of 91.7%. It means RMT members in these areas will be able to take strike action for potentially another 6-month period. RMT general secretary Mick Lynch said that it was a massive endorsement of the union’s strategy to win workplace justice through negotiation where possible and industrial action if necessary read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Rates of pay and conditions of service 2022 – Transport for Wales (15 Nov) – Michael Lynch RMT General Secretary: Dear Colleague, Further to my previous correspondence, I write to inform you that fresh talks have taken place with the company and an improved offer has been tabled for all affected members which can be found below read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Congratulations on another solid strike (15 Nov) – Official Circular: to all branches and representatives, all Underground and former LT employers from Mick Lynch RMT General Secretary: Dear Colleagues, DEFEND JOBS, PENSIONS AND AGREEMENTS – LONDON UNDERGROUND (LUL/14/2). Congratulations to every member on London Underground (LUL) for taking part in the strike action on Thursday 10th November. This action was solid and showed that your determination to defend jobs, pensions and agreements remains as strong as it was when we took our first strike action in March of this year. Without our action, London Underground would, no doubt, be further down the road of job cuts, pension attacks and the imposition of flexible working. The next action is scheduled for all LUL Station Grades members who will be taking action by refusing to work any overtime between 00:01 hours on Sunday 20th November to 23:59 hours on Saturday 26th November 2022. Station Grades members at Kings Cross Area, Heathrow Cover Group, Victoria Central Cover Group and the SRT will also be taking strike action by not booking on for any shifts commencing between 00:01 hours and 23:59 hours on Friday 25th November 2022. There is also currently a re-ballot underway and papers were posted to members on Tuesday 8th November. The closing date is Thursday 8th December 2022 and all members should be urged to return their ballot paper as soon as possible read more

Avanti chaos reaches catering services (15 Nov) – Following mass cancellations on struggling Avanti West Coast services, catering services are now in a similar chaotic state caused by job cuts and poor management by the train operating company owned by FirstGroup and Trenitalia, RMT said today. Despite promising enhanced catering services on the franchise when it took over from Virgin, Avanti West Coast has cut 175 catering jobs which has led to staff shortages, plummeting levels of service and massive uncertainty read more

First Group profits soar as bus workers lose out (11 Nov) – Transport union RMT slammed greedy First South West today for not settling the pay dispute with bus workers while parent company profits are soaring. First Group has published its half year results for the six months to September 2022 which shows that operating profits from its continuing operations have increased to £66 million compared to £52 million for the first half of last year. First South West workers in Somerset and Cornwall are angry that many of them are only paid just over £11 an hour and that bosses only offered a small uprate to £12 an hour. On top of the huge profits First Group has made, First South West itself wholly owns Somerset Passenger Solutions. For the year ending March 2021, First South West received a dividend income of £2.1 million from SPS read more

Government falling behind on transport climate targets (11 Nov) – RMT research shows that Network Rail is nowhere near its own rail electrification targets as the government imposes austerity and managed decline on Britain’s railways. On the eve of the Global Day of Action on Climate Justice to coincide with COP27, union research shows that Network Rail is currently completely failing to match its net zero commitments on decarbonising our railways, ensuring that Britain continues to fall behind other countries in investing in faster, more efficient and green railways read more

 

ASLEF

ASLEF Announces Another Day of Strike Action (10 Nov) – Train drivers who are members of ASLEF – the train drivers’ union – will walk out at 12 train operating companies on Saturday 26 November in a dispute over pay. ASLEF negotiators have been engaged in talks with the industry but there has, so far, been no offer on pay read more

 

TSSA

London Underground indicative ballot on industrial action (10 Nov) – TSSA members at London Underground are urged to take part in a vote on their willingness to take industrial action in an escalating dispute over safe staffing levels across the network and imposed changes to working arrangements. TSSA has serious concerns about the impact of cutting 600 front line roles. Reports of stations being closed or having reduced opening times, and of attacks on staff, are rising as the impact of vacancies being left unfilled takes effect. The indicative ballot is open and will close on 18 November read more

TfL ACAS talks over pay (10 Nov) – Last week (w/c 30 October) TSSA negotiators met with Transport for London (TfL) representatives, including Glynn Barton, TfL’s new Chief Operating Officer, at conciliation service ACAS in an attempt to make progress with TfL on pay talks and avert a breakdown which could lead to a ballot for industrial action. Despite the best efforts of TSSA’s negotiating team, no significant progress was made, and TfL appear reluctant to negotiate read more

November Picket Line round up – Details of pickets lines will be posted here

 

Unite

BREAKING NEWS!! Strike at Petrofac goes ahead following dispute over pay (16 Nov) – Unite offshore workers take strike action as dispute escalates. Unite has today (16 November) confirmed that its members on the Petrofac owned Repsol assets will take part in industrial action starting on 16 November with a continuous overtime ban and 48 hour stoppage taking place on 16 and 17 November. A further 48 hour stoppage will take place on 30 November and 1 December. This action will cause significant disruption to the maintenance and safe running of the platforms/terminal. Around 146 members are involved in this dispute which centres on the removal of a 10 per cent Equal Time payment, a continuous below inflationary increase of 3 per cent cost of living increase for years, payment for OEUK medicals, increase in mileage payments and stand in duties payment read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Midlands Metro strikes suspended following improved pay offer (15 Nov) – The remaining strikes scheduled for this week on the West Midlands Metro have been suspended following an improved pay offer. Unite had previously announced an escalation in the long running dispute, with members due to begin all-out continuous strike action from Monday 28 November. Following the announcement of an all-out strike the employers requested an urgent meeting at the conciliation service Acas and an improved pay offer was made. Unite, the UK’s leading union, will now ballot its members at the West Midlands Metro on the new offer. As an act of goodwill the strike action planned for Wednesday–Friday this week (16-18 November) has been suspended to allow the ballot to go ahead. Unite regional officer Sulinder Singh said: “Following an improved pay offer being made today (Tuesday) at the conciliation service Acas, as an act of good faith, Unite has suspended the strike action that was scheduled for the rest of this week. “Unite’s members will be fully briefed on the latest offer and balloted on it.” If the latest offer is rejected then the strikes scheduled for next week and beyond including the all-out strike action will proceed as scheduled read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Strike at coffin manufacturer enters second week (15 Nov) – Strike action continues at Coop coffin factory as Unite continues fight for improvements on pay. Unite members working in the Coop’s only coffin manufacturing facility have continued their second week of strike action which commenced on Monday 14 November and continues until 07.54am on Monday 21 November. Unite members are digging in for a fight for a fair wage deal during the cost of living crisis. The refusal of the Coop to make a fair offer risks continuing strike action over the Christmas and New Year period and jeopardises coffin supply disruption during winter read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Act on pay and help the NHS, staff and patients, say health unions (15 Nov) – Unions representing more than a million staff working across the NHS have today (Tuesday) met with health secretary Steve Barclay to discuss the growing workforce crisis. At the Westminster meeting this morning, the unions made clear that without urgent government action on wages, experienced health workers would continue to quit their jobs, and the NHS struggle to attract new staff in sufficient numbers. Unions told the secretary of state that patient waits for treatment would carry on worsening, unless something was done about the dangerously low staffing levels affecting every part of the NHS. Decent wages are key to stopping employees leaving and to turning the NHS into an attractive employer for potential recruits, the unions urged. The unions also warned that threats to cap wages next year would do nothing to fill the 132,000 vacancies across the NHS in England alone and would make a desperate staffing situation significantly worse. Ministers must act now, invest in staff and services with an inflation-proofed wage rise, or be responsible for disputes across the NHS this winter that no one wants to see, urged the unions. Health unions await a date for the next meeting with the health secretary read more

BREAKING NEWS!! Threat of industrial action forces United Airlines climb down (15 Nov) – Airline drops outsourcing plans as Unite wins cost of living pay boost. Airport operations workers employed by United Airlines at London Heathrow have secured a new pay deal which includes an improved pay offer and a commitment from the company to abandon outsourcing plans. The workers had announced 4 days of strike action planned between 28th and 31st October after a 96% vote in favour of strikes. But after a series of intensive negotiations the strike was averted and an agreement was reached for a cost of living increase on all elements of pay. The airline also agreed to continue with its commitment not to outsource work to third party organisations. United Airlines was threatening to end this long standing agreement read more

BREAKING NEWS!! West Midlands Metro workers announce all-out strike as employers fail to end poverty pay rates (15 Nov) – Workers employed on the West Midlands Metro have announced that they will begin all-out strike action this month after the employer made a derisory pay offer. The all-out strike will begin on Monday 28 November and will inevitably cause severe disruption to commuters and shoppers alike throughout the Christmas period. Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “The workers on the West Midlands Metro undertake highly responsible roles and are simply not going to accept poverty rates of pay any longer. They are being paid £5,000 less per year than workers on other metro networks. “Andy Street needs to stop hiding behind his desk and end poverty pay on the West Midlands Metro…” read more

Protest: Baristas United – Unite Hospitality have launched our national barista campaign and on Thursday 17th of November we will be out in Central London in solidarity with Starbucks Workers in the US – 3pm 112, 116 New Oxford St, London WC1A 1HH Facebook event

Unite secures Telford Heinz condiment factory workers 11% pay rise (14 Nov) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, has secured around 150 workers at Telford’s Heinz Food Service factory a pay rise of 11 per cent. Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “By standing together in their union, our members at Heinz’s Telford factory have secured a substantial pay rise. As this result shows, Unite’s total focus on improving jobs, pay and conditions is winning for union members.” The workers produce condiments sachets for the hospitality industry. The deal was negotiated without the need for industrial action read more

Tyne and Wear Metro strikes off after Unite secures improved offer (14 Nov) – Strikes by more than 50 Tyne and Wear Metro engineers employed by Stadler Rail Service Ltd have been called off after the workers accepted an improved pay offer, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Monday). The deal includes a much improved offer for pay and allowances, which will be backdated to January, a £1,000 one-off payment and boosts to overtime rates and health benefits. Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “By standing together in their union, these workers secured an improved pay offer from Stadler. This result is further evidence that Unite’s total commitment to improving our members’ jobs, pay and conditions is working.” Strikes scheduled to last from 14 November to 28 November will no longer go ahead read more

Unite ad campaign warns NHS under siege from Tory Government (14 Nov) – Unite, Britain’s leading union, will launch an ad campaign today (Monday 14) across London, the North East, North West and in the West Midlands to call on Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt and Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak to use this week’s budget to avert the funding crisis engulfing the NHS. The union will also stage a photo call at St Thomas’s Hospital, Westminster Bridge Road, SE1 7EH from 08:00 hours on Monday 14 November where workers will tell a massive cardboard cut-out of `Rishi Sunak’ why strikes may now be the only option to save the NHS. The union has taken out a series of full page ads across Metro newspaper titles which will be seen by almost 1 million people. An ad van will also tour Westminster from Monday until budget day (17 November) telling the PM it’s his last chance to save the NHS read more

Unite chief: `We are now in a fight to save the NHS itself’ (10 Nov)

Seven out of ten people support cost of living pay increase for NHS workers (9 Nov)

Nearly 10,000 more NHS workers balloted to join widespread strike action this winter (12 Nov) – Unite opens new ballots across England and Wales, including blood and transplant services, on top of thousands already balloted. Workers warn this is now a fight to save the NHS. Nearly 10,000 NHS workers are to be balloted in the coming days over strike action this winter, on top of thousands of other healthcare members who have already been balloted. Unite is also planning to ballot thousands more in the next months. Unite the union, which represents 100,000 workers across the NHS, says that voting papers are going out across 36 NHS trusts and organisations across England and Wales as the fight to save the NHS and reverse 12 years of attacks on pay steps up. Members working in frontline patient care and essential services such as the blood and transplant services will vote on possible strike action. The rolling ballots will close before Christmas meaning that workers could walk out in January 2023 read more

Scottish Ambulance Service workers set to take industrial action (11 Nov) – Unite confirms action is a ‘first step’ in NHS pay dispute. Unite the union who represent around 1,500 Scottish Ambulance Service workers has confirmed its members will take imminent industrial action. All Unite’s SAS workers will take continuous action short of strike from 00.01am on 25 November. The action will include an overtime ban and work to rule. In practical terms this means Unite members working strictly to contractual terms in respect of working hours, shift start and finish times, and the taking of scheduled breaks. The SAS workers involved in the action short of strike will include advanced practitioners, paramedics, planners, administrative, clerical, real time analysts, and business intelligence. The measures taken are designed to in no way impact on responses to emergency incidents read more

Trade unions welcome progress in Glasgow equal pay negotiations as industrial action called off (11 Nov) – Glasgow City Council pledges to bring forward payments to claimants. The joint trade unions – Unite, Unison and GMB – representing claimants in the Glasgow City Council equal pay scandal have today (11 November) welcomed a commitment to settle outstanding payments. Glasgow City Council last night (10 November) agreed to pay about £770 million to settle the equal pay claims to around 19,000 present and former workers by the end of next year. The agreement pledges to cover a “gap period” between an initial agreement in 2018 and a new pay and grading system, which was originally scheduled to be introduced in 2024. The trade unions had previously accused Glasgow City Council of ‘unnecessary delays’ in the process of settling the equal pay claims, and accordingly balloted their respective members over industrial action read more

Christmas Fox’s biscuit shortages averted as workers accept improved pay offer (11 Nov) – Strike action by engineers at Fox’s Biscuit factory in Batley Yorkshire has been averted after the workforce accepted an improved pay offer. The 36 engineers who are members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, had voted in favour of strikes in a pay dispute and announced industrial action, which would have disrupted Christmas production. Following the announcement of industrial action, fresh talks were held and an improved pay offer was made. The workers were balloted on the new offer and it was accepted, ending the dispute read more

Hull Stagecoach workers in strike victory after Unite secures 20% rise (11 Nov) – Unite leader says deal which will see drivers earn £13 an hour will provoke more industrial action. Strikes by more than 250 Stagecoach workers in Hull have ended after the workers accepted a two-year pay deal worth 20 per cent read more

Go North East bus engineers balloted for strike action over pay (11 Nov) – Go Ahead Group earning millions in profits but refusing to give an inflation-linked pay rise. Around 150 Go North East bus engineers are being balloted for strike action over pay, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Friday). The ballot for strike action comes after the workers at depots in Dunston, Sunderland, Consett, North Shields, Washington, Hexham and Gateshead rejected a 10 per cent pay offer from the company. The workers said the offer was an effective pay cut and are demanding a rise of 12.3 per cent, which was rate of RPI inflation when the negotiations began. The RPI inflation rate is currently 12.6 per cent and rising. Go North East is part of the Go Ahead group, which reported a statutory profit before tax of £50.1m during the six months ending 1 January 2022. The company has also stated it is expecting to return healthy finances in 2022. Unite general secretary Sharon Graham said: “Go Ahead can well afford to pay our members a pay rise that meets RPI inflation and it needs to do so. Our members will have Unite’s full support as they fight for a fair pay rise.” The ballot for strike action opens tomorrow (11 November) and closes on 29 November. Strike action could begin as early as mid-December, impacting services across the region read more

Abellio bus drivers in South and West London announce 10 days of pay strikes (10 Nov) – Over 950 bus drivers employed by Abellio in South and West London will take 10 days of strike action in a pay dispute. The dispute is a result of the company failing to enter into meaningful pay talks, despite indicating that it was prepared to do so. Workers’ pay is due to increase from January 2023, but Abellio has failed even to make an initial pay offer. The workers will begin strike action on Tuesday 22 November and will also strike on the 25, 26 of this month. They will be followed by further strikes on 1, 2, 3, 9, 10, 16 and 17 December read more

Mossmorran refinery facing disruption as workers balloted over pay (14 Nov) – Members of Unite, Scotland’s leading union, based at ExxonMobil’s ethylene plant in Mossmorran are set to take part in an industrial action ballot which could threaten production. The ballot which open today (14 November) and closes on 28 November is a dispute over the level of bonus payments under the NAECI (National Agreement for the Engineering Construction Industry) agreement which covers the workers. Around 200 Unite members are employed on construction engineering maintenance contracts. The workforce are split between Altrad, Bilfinger, and Kaefer. The contractors are seeking to secure the maximum bonus of £2.37 an hour under the terms of the NAECI agreement to offset rampant inflation rate which now stands at 12.6 per cent (RPI). The employers, however, have to date refused to pay the bonus read more

Unite secures groundbreaking deal for pay and job security for ASDA and Euro Garages tanker drivers (10 Nov) – Unite, the UK’s leading union, has secured a ground breaking deal to secure the jobs of tanker drivers employed on the ASDA and Euro Garages contracts. The deal was secured after the drivers voted overwhelmingly in favour of industrial action. The drivers on the ASDA North and South Contracts are employed on an outsourced contract by Fuel Transport and Logistics Ltd (FTL) and those on the Euro Garages contract are employed by Hoyer Gas and Petroleum. The workers were alarmed that the owners of ASDA and Euro Garages, the Issa brothers, were in the process of rebranding and transforming a number of Euro Garages into ASDA on the Move stores (AOTM) and in their trials were using low cost fuel hauliers, rather than abiding by existing agreements. This threatened the jobs of the tanker drivers. Following a strong vote for strike action, the employer engaged in fresh talks and a ground breaking deal, which included ASDA was agreed. As part of the deal, ASDA changed its contract two years early with FTL so that they will be contracted to continue to deliver fuel until July 2031, securing Unite members’ jobs and future read more

Leicester city council scraps workplace parking levy after Unite campaign (10 Nov) – Leicester city council plans to introduce a workplace parking levy have been dropped following a campaign by Unite, the UK’s leading union. The levy would have resulted in businesses with 10 or more employees being charged £550 a year for each parking space. Unite argued that costs would most likely be passed onto already hard pressed staff by the employers. The council said the levy has been dropped due to the impact of the cost of living crisis on people’s finances read more

Shelter workers announce two weeks of strike action in pay dispute (10 Nov) – Over 500 workers at the housing charity Shelter will stage a two week strike next month, in response to the organisation’s management attempting to impose a real terms pay cut on its staff. The workers, who are based across the UK, returned an 85 per cent vote in favour of industrial action and will begin strike action on Monday 5 December, with the strike ending on Sunday 18 December. Management at Shelter has sought to impose a three per cent pay increase on staff, which is a huge real terms pay cut with the true inflation rate (RPI) currently standing at 12.6 per cent. Management has refused to return to the negotiating table and has instead begun to impose one off payments. These will leave pay rates at unacceptably low levels and fail to take into account rampant inflation read more

NI Housing Executive bosses must show respect to workers and tenants and clear their diaries to engage in negotiations to end housing worker strike (9 Nov) – Responding to the media appearance of NIHE Chief Executive Grainia Long on regional radio this morning where she failed to touch upon the profound crisis facing social housing tenants, Unite the union has challenged NIHE management on their inaction. Press reports confirm that in excess of 3,600 tenants have been left needing repairs and improvements to clear drains, improve draughty windows or upgrade heating. In addition to this Unite the union has been informed that 270 disabled tenants haven’t got the essential adaptions they need and almost 300 desperately needed social housing units lie empty as the change of occupancy work has not been done. The crisis arises from the sudden withdrawal of eleven private sector operators from outsourced maintenance contracts at a time when direct labour organisation workers are into their thirteenth week of strike action for a cost of living increase read more

Workers responsible for delivery of Samsung mobiles win union recognition (9 Nov) – Unite has secured trade union rights for 120 workers at Yusen Logistics in Wellingborough. The campaign began in January this year and in the space of a few months the union’s membership grew from almost no members to 90 per cent membership read more

Local government craftworkers prepare for local disputes, after national offer reluctantly accepted (9 Nov) – Members of Unite and GMB, covered by the local authority “red book” agreement in England, Wales and Northern Ireland, are now focussing on local disputes to improve terms and conditions. Members of Unite and GMB working under the red book rejected the local government employer’s final offer as it fell short on a number of key points. Unite’s members recorded a 78 per cent no vote against the offer. However, as the larger local government ‘green book’ bargaining group has accepted the offer, it was reluctantly decided that it should be accepted for red book workers. This will ensure that members received a much needed pay boost and to prevent employers from simply imposing the offer on workers. Unite and GMB are now actively pursuing local disputes. It will target councils where red book workers are well organised and are fully prepared to undertake disputes over increases to terms and conditions. The strategy began this year with a number of councils, including several in Northern Ireland, staging distinctive red book disputes over pay scales read more

TfL and London Underground workers to strike this week over pensions, pay and jobs (9 Nov) – Over 1,000 to walkout as London mayor Sadiq Khan urged to intervene. Strikes will hit the capital’s transport network on Thursday (10 November) as Unite members at Transport for London (TfL) and London Underground (LU) take action to defend their pensions, pay and jobs. Due to shift patterns, services could also be hit on 11 November. More than 1,000 Unite members will walk out in protest at plans to slash the value of their pensions and close the existing final salary scheme. The workers are also angry over TfL’s failure to make an acceptable pay offer to members for either 2021 or 2022, and there are concerns that TfL refuses to guarantee there will be no job cuts read more

Domestic violence leave:  Irish Government proposals fail workers, victims (8 Nov) – Unite urges provision of 10 days’ paid domestic violence leave. November 8th: Unite, which represents women workers throughout the economy, today (Tuesday) expressed disappointment at the Government’s decision to provide for just five days of paid domestic violence leave.  The Government’s proposals are contained in amendments to the Work Life Balance and Miscellaneous Provisions Bill 2022, which is being considered by the Select Committee on Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth today read more

Fawley refinery facing disruption as workers announce cost of living strikes (8 Nov) – Members of Unite, the UK leading union, are set to take substantial strike action at the Fawley oil refinery in Hampshire, later this month, in a dispute over cost of living payments. The dispute involves over 130 Unite members employed on construction engineering maintenance contracts. The workforce are split between three contractors: Altrad, Bilfinger, and Enerveo. The dispute arose due to the rampant inflation rate. The workers, who are employed under the NAECI (National Agreement for the Engineering Construction Industry) agreement, were seeking to secure the maximum bonus of £2.37 an hour, to offset inflation. The employers, however, refused to pay the bonus. Strike action will take place initially from Monday 21 November until Saturday 26 November with a further strike from Monday 28 November until Saturday 3 December read more

Unite leader Sharon Graham to visit Muller Stonehouse, Gloucestershire picket line on Sat 12 Nov – Super-rich Muller wants to milk more from workers to boost profits. Nearly 70 HGV drivers and shunters employed by the German dairy giant and who are responsible for delivering milk products to supermarkets nationwide have been on strike since August. The dispute is over imposed rota changes which destroy workers’ ability to spend time with their families. In contravention of an agreement signed with Unite earlier this year, Muller is trying to impose a five days on two days off rota system. The changes would require all drivers to work at least one day every weekend. The company, which made a £16.5 million profit in 2020 and forecast more in 2021, wants to impose the rota to save money when they contract third party hauliers to deliver products read more

World Cup travellers facing Heathrow flight woe as workers strike over pay – Workers employed by Dnata and Menzies at Heathrow will take three days of strike action beginning on Friday 18 November, in a dispute over pay. The strike action will begin in the early hours of Friday 18 November and it will be completed in the early hours of Monday 21 November. It will lead to disruption, cancellations and delays at Heathrow terminals 2, 3 and 4. The strike action will particularly affect Qatar Airways, which has scheduled an additional 10 flights a week during the World Cup. The strike action involves 700 workers employed by Dnata and Menzies. The workforce carry out a wide variety of roles, including ground-handling, airside transport and cargo read more

Strikes at Coop Funeralcare continue as talks at ACAS breakdown – Disruption at coffin manufacturer set to last throughout winter. Unite can confirm today (4 November) that further strike action will take place at Coop Funeralcare in Govan, from Monday 14 November concluding at 07.54 on Monday 21 November after talks at ACAS to resolve the current Coop coffin factory dispute failed. The meeting broke up without agreement and with no further talks planned continued disruption is certain. Additional strike dates following this action will also be confirmed at a later date. Unite has stated that unless there is a resolution, this action will create the potential for disruption into the new year read more

Notice of action served on Petrofac in ongoing contract dispute – Unite offshore workers set for strike as dispute escalates. Unite the union today (2 November) confirmed that it has served notice on Petrofac for members on the Repsol assets. The industrial action will start on 16 November with a continuous overtime ban and 48 hour stoppage taking place on 16 and 17 November. A further 48 hour stoppage will take place on 30 November and 1 December. Any action will have a significant impact on the maintenance and safe running of the platforms/terminal. Around 146 members are involved in this dispute which centres on the removal of a 10 per cent Equal Time payment, an additional 3 per cent increase on top to cover years of below inflationary increases, payment for OEUK medicals, increase in mileage payments and stand in duties payment read more

Southampton Airport faces shutdown as workers prepare to strike after three year pay freeze – Southampton Airport faces shutdown as workers prepare to strike after three year pay freeze. No pay increase since 2019. The workers made huge sacrifices during the pandemic to keep the airport safe. Workers at Southampton Airport who haven’t had a pay increase since 2019 will take a series of one day strikes beginning on 5 November after months of unacceptable delays by airport bosses. Airside operations controllers, firefighters, technicians and engineering workers will take 1 day of strike action on Saturday 5 November, Saturday 12 November and Saturday 19 November read more

Strike action begins at Renold Couplings – Workers employed by Renold Couplings in East Cardiff have today (25 Oct) commenced four weeks of continuous strike action over pay. In a recent ballot Unite members at the site in East Cardiff, voted by over 91% in favour of industrial action. Renold Couplings, who manufacture power transmission products, have offered workers a pay offer well below inflation. This is despite the fact that workers endured a pay freeze during the Covid pandemic read more

Pickle and vinegar shortages growing as Mizkan Rochdale workers announce fresh strikes over real terms pay cut – Shortages of the UK’s most popular pickles and vinegars, including Branston Pickle, Sarsons Vinegar and Haywards Pickled Vegetables, will increase as Unite, the UK’s leading union, has announced further strike action as a result of the employer’s (Mizkan Euro) derisory pay offer. The 50-plus workers, who are based at Mizkan Euro’s factory in Rochdale, will take fresh strike action for three days beginning on Wednesday 3 November and ending on Saturday 5 November. The workers took three days of strike action earlier this month (18-20 October) in response to the company offering the workers an increase of just five per cent, which is in reality a pay cut, with the actual inflation rate (RPI) now standing at 12.6 per cent read more

TfL prolonging Woolwich Ferry dispute by using agency staff – Unite raises safety concerns over poorly trained agency workers. TfL delays preventing the suspension of strike action. Unite has written to London Assembly members to raise concerns about the use of poorly trained agency workers being used to run a limited service during the Woolwich Ferry strike. The union has called on GLA members to give an assurance that the agency staffing arrangements along with the condition of the boats give no cause for concern as far as safety is concerned. The strike began on Monday 24 October and ends on Friday 28 October.  87% of the workers who took part in the ballot voted for strike action. Unite is meeting TfL on Monday 31 October read more

Walsall Housing Group workers to strike over imposed pay cut – Members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, are stepping up strike action this week after their employer Walsall Housing Group imposed a real-terms pay cut on the workers. The company has imposed a 3.1 per cent increase and an additional £300 one-off payment on the workers, far below the current real inflation rate (RPI) of 12.3 per cent. The Walsall Housing Group workers play an essential role in keeping tenants’ homes safe and repaired. Over 40 members of Unite at Walsall Housing Group will take 12 days of strike action over the coming weeks on October 21, 24, 28 and 31 and then on 4, 7, 11, 14, 18, 21, 25 and 28 November read more

Quorn strikes go all-out over super-profitable firm’s ‘derisory’ pay offer – Company’s efforts to undermine strike causing chaos and raises safety fears. More than 60 workers at Quorn’s meat-free paste production factory will begin all-out strike action this Thursday (20 October) in a dispute over a ‘derisory’ pay offer. The workers, members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, have already taken nine days of strike action in October over a four per cent pay offer plus a one-off payment. The workers are seeking a nine per cent pay rise, which was the RPI inflation rate in April when negotiations began. The strikes are expected to lead to shortages of Quorn products in supermarkets read more

Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons and M&S hit by poverty pay strikes at Lincolnshire food manufacturer – Bakkavor food manufacturer made £100 million profits but minimum wage workers offered pay cut. More than 700 workers at Bakkavor’s food manufacturing factory in Spalding, Lincolnshire, will strike over poverty pay, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Tuesday). The production line operatives, who make own brand soups, sauces and deli produce for major supermarkets, will strike from 1 November to 9 November. More strikes will be scheduled if the dispute is not resolved read more

West Midlands Metro strike goes ahead as Unite members vow to defeat pay pittance – Extensive strike action affecting the West Midland Metro will begin tomorrow (Saturday 15 October), in a dispute over rates of pay described as a ‘pittance’. Fifty-three days of strike action will get underway following the employer’s failure to improve its pay offer or to propose fresh negotiations. The dispute involves over 174 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, employed by West Midlands Metro, who are seeking a major improvement on their pay. For some it is the lowest rate of pay in the country for the roles they undertake. Saturday is the first of 53 days of strike action, which has been scheduled to continue until Saturday 5 January 2023 read more

Derby Alstom pay cut strikes to impact East Midlands Rail maintenance – Alstom profits at £233m but workers offered just four per cent. More than 70 highly skilled workers who maintain the rolling stock at Alstom’s Derby site will strike over pay on 27 October and 29 October. If the dispute is not resolved more strikes will be scheduled. The workers will also begin industrial action comprising of a work to rule and an overtime ban on 19 October over the four per cent pay offer, well below the RPI rate of inflation of 12.3 per cent. French-based Alstom’s latest financial report shows it made sales of £13.6 billion in 2021/22 and net profits of £233 million read more

Arrow home deliveries facing strikes until Christmas over ‘dismal’ pay offer – Members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, employed by Arrow XL, will begin strike action later this month in a dispute over pay. Unite represents 350 workers who undertake two-person deliveries for major retailers including Amazon, Very Group, LG Electronics, Richer Sounds and Buy it Direct read more

Arriva drivers in Northumberland to strike over threatened closure of Jesmond depot – Bus drivers employed by Arriva will begin strike action later this month in opposition to the company’s plans to close its Jesmond depot. The strike will involve over 100 bus drivers, who are members of Unite, the UK’s leading union.  Beginning on Thursday 21 October, it will be an all-out (continuous) strike. The drivers recorded a 97 per cent vote in favour of industrial action. The Jesmond depot is due to close on Monday 31 October. The closure threatens jobs and will result in a poorer bus service throughout Newcastle and Northumberland. The company has failed to adequately consult Unite over its plans read more

Felixstowe dock workers return to picket lines – Workers at the UK’s largest container port at Felixstowe will renew strike action tomorrow (Tuesday 27 September) in an ongoing dispute over pay. Over 1,900 members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, will begin strike action at 07:00 on Tuesday 27 September with the eight day strike ending on 06:59 on Wednesday 5 October. Strike action is resuming after the company refused to return to negotiations following the initial eight days strike action in August. Instead the company imposed a seven per cent increase on the workforce. This amounted to a real terms pay cut with the real inflation rate (RPI) currently standing at 12.3 per cent. The workers rejected the imposed pay offer by 82 per cent on 78 per cent turnout read more

Honeywell workforce set for strike action – Workers reject ‘pitiful’ pay offer at Edinburgh aerospace company. Members of Unite, Scotland’s leading trade union, employed at aerospace company Honeywell, will begin strike action tomorrow (8 September) in a dispute over pay. Around Unite 20 members including production and assembly workers recorded a 78.6 per cent vote in favour of strike action on a 77.8 per cent turnout at Honeywell. The first day of strike action (8 September) will be followed every Thursday for the next twelve weeks. The company, which specialises in the design and manufacturing of electronic hardware and systems, has proposed a multi-year deal of 2.75 per cent for this year and next year then followed by 0 per cent in 2024. This offer has been resoundingly rejected by the workers read more

Workers at Causeway Coast and Glens council to commence all-out strike action tomorrow after councils vote down pay increase – Offer of two pay points plus a cash lump sum to end dispute was rejected at last night’s council meeting by a single vote in the chamber. Unite the union has confirmed that its members at Causeway Coast and Glens Borough Council will commence continuous strike action at the local authority tomorrow (8 Sept). The decision by workers followed last night’s vote at full council at which a proposal to settle the strike by offering two pay point increments and a lump sum to workers – similar to that provided in Derry City & Strabane and in Mid-Ulster District Councils – was voted down by a majority of one councillor. General Secretary of Unite, Sharon Graham, pledged her union’s full support to the striking council workers read more

Striking Tipton CabAuto workers reveal shocking levels of in-work poverty – Workers in McLaren, Aston Martin, JLR and Bentley supply chains ‘terrified of winter bills’. Striking Cab Auto worker – “How can it be that I work for a company that makes millions in profits, yet I have to use a begging bowl at food banks?” More than 100 West Midlands workers, paid just £9.90 an hour, are taking renewed strike action, which began on 23 August and will finish on 16 September, over a three per cent pay offer. The real rate of inflation, RPI, is running at 12.3 per cent and is expected to climb even higher. The workers, who make luxury car interiors but do not receive company sick pay or shift pay, have taken 26 days of strike action since 28 June read more

Real terms pay cut forces strike by Hartlepool chemical workers at Venator – Members of Unite, the UK’s leading union, employed at chemical company Venator Materials Ltd, will begin strike action this week in a dispute over pay. The company, which produces pigments and additives, has only offered the workers a five per cent pay increase – far below the rate of inflation. The 100 plus members of Unite at the company recorded an 81 per cent vote in favour of strike action on an 84 per cent turnout… The workers will take a total of 10 days of strike action (see note to editors for details) this month in the dispute. The first four day strike will begin on Thursday 1 September at 18:59 and will initially involve the night shift read more

North Sea strike to hit Foinaven vessel – 96% vote for strike action over inferior redundancy package. Unite the union today (25 July) confirmed that its members operating the Foinaven Floating Production, Storage and Offloading vessel (FPSO) have voted to take strike action. 96 per cent voted for strike action on an 84 per cent turnout. Continuous strike action is now scheduled to take place from 5 August. The dispute centres on offshore members being given a significantly inferior redundancy package compared with Altera’s onshore workforce.  The Foinaven field is situated approximately 120 miles west of the Shetland Isles within the Faroes/Shetland Trough. Production from the field was suspended in 2021 read more

Bosch Rexroth workers to strike in dispute over pay and shift changes – Unite slams global giant’s plans that leave Scottish workers £7000 a year worse off. Unite has today (Monday 4 July) confirmed that members working at Bosch Rexroth Glenrothes, will walk out over a pay proposal that will leave workers £7000 a year worse off. The German-owned global tech and engineering giant has proposed a six per cent pay deal, which Unite says is a significant pay cut given that real inflation currently stands at 11.7 per cent. The employers are also refusing to back-date the pay award to 1 January or to reverse changes to shift patterns and shift allowances, which means the combined impact of the offer is to leave workers around £7,000 per year worse off. Workers at the site have rejected the company’s proposal by 74 per cent. Unite says that the Bosch Rexroth, a subsidiary of Bosch, is in a strong financial position and has no need to attack the workers’ pay and conditions.  In its 2021 annual report, Bosch Rexroth boasted of `reaching a new high on incoming orders’ which have generated sales of £5.4 billion (6.2 billion euros), up by nearly one fifth on the year before. The union’s members, 245 workers, will take continuous strike action from Tuesday 5 July until Tuesday 12 July inclusive. Thereafter they will strike every Monday and Tuesday going forward with an ongoing ban on overtime throughout read more

 

CWU

Support the CWU strikes in Royal Mail, BT/Openreach & Post Office – the union has called two further national 48-hour strikes in Royal Mail: 24-25 November and 30 November-1 December.

The CWU has launched a strike fund – please support: Unity Bank, CWU General Fund, 60-83-01 33019822

We support the call of the CWU for Royal Mail and BT to be re-nationalised. Follow the latest news via CWU’s Facebook page, website and Twitter @CWUnews

BREAKING NEWS!! Post Office workers – VOTE YES, YES (15 Nov) – As strike ballot enters its last few days, CWU leaders urge POL members to ‘deliver another vote for action’. “If you haven’t voted yet, do it today – vote YES to strike action and vote YES to action short of a strike,” says acting DGSP Andy Furey, in a final push to maximise the turnout in the fresh ballot being held among Post Office members in the long-running pay dispute. “We need to send the strong message to Post Office bosses – and the more of you who vote, and the more of you who vote YES, the louder your collective voice. They made £74 million in profit over the past two years – £35m for 2020/21 and £39m for 2021/22 – and it was your hard work that created those profits. Therefore, they can afford to pay you a fair pay rise. It’s only right and just that you get a fair share of that success.” Explaining the cynical reason why hard-working staff in Crowns, Admin and Supply Chain did not get adequately rewarded for their efforts, Andy points out: “It wasn’t about affordability, it was because of the targets linked to managers’ bonuses. If Post Office didn’t hit these targets – and giving you a fair pay rise would have meant targets were missed – managers wouldn’t have received their healthy bonuses. So, you lost out to selfishness and greed read more

 

PCS

BREAKING NEWS!! PCS calls off first day of strike action at BEIS (15 Nov) – PCS members employed by Aramark and ISS at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have called off the first of 5 days of strike action which was due to start tomorrow. Aramark, which is in dispute with PCS over pay, has now made an improved offer which we are now putting to members. A further increase of around 4% in November has now been added to the original offer made in March of 7%. ISS members, who are in dispute over health and safety issues, have been offered potential solutions to the extent of security guards’ daily standing time, a Covid protocol and extreme weather provisions. Reps will continue to talk to the employer. A decision on the remaining days of action on 23 and 30 November, and 7 and 14 December, will be made shortly in each employer area read more

PCS strike ballot results: Massive yes vote for strikes (10 Nov) – The legal turnout threshold of 50% has been achieved in many areas allowing for major industrial action. The PCS ballot for strike action in the UK civil service and related areas over pay, pensions, jobs and redundancy terms closed on Monday (7 November) and the ballot papers have now been counted. See the results in full, including your employer area. This article has been updated to include a link to the results in full. The full ballot results, including individual employer areas, will be posted on this website shortly. Employers are being notified. We have achieved a fantastic result with a massive average Yes vote for industrial action across the areas balloted of 86.2%, the highest percentage vote in the union’s history. The votes of members in each individual employer have been counted separately. 126 employer areas crossed the 50% turnout threshold required by law for strike action and returned a majority Yes vote. Industrial action can be held in these employer areas. The average turnout across all balloted areas was 51.6%. We are now in a position to call significant industrial action in support of our claim for a 10% pay rise, pensions justice, job security and and no cuts to redundancy terms. The PCS national executive committee (NEC) has now sent a letter to the Cabinet Office demanding meaningful negotiations on our claim. Unless substantial proposals are received from the government the NEC will agree a programme of industrial action at its meeting on Friday, 18 November read more

Anti-Union laws prevent early action in HMRC (10 Nov) – There has been a record vote for action across PCS; but despite nearly 85% of voting HMRC members and almost 80% of voting VOA members, voting for action, the anti-union laws mean members in HMRC and VOA cannot join the early strikes planned by PCS. Earlier today (10 November) PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka announced that out of just over 200 civil service employers, PCS members in 126 government departments and agencies have voted for strike action; and have done so in record numbers. Disappointingly though, out of a membership of tens of thousands, the turnout in the ballot of HMRC members fell agonisingly short – just 746 – of meeting the legal minimum turnout for the ballot. Likewise in the VOA, the number of members voting fell short of the numbers required under the anti-union laws. This means that, even though nearly 85% of HMRC voting members and almost 80% of VOA voting members, all voted for action; members in both HMRC and VOA will be prevented by law, from joining any early strike action that the union has planned read more

VOA announces derisory pay award (14 Nov) – The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) has announced their final pay offer to members, which has been published to all staff in the Agency. When PCS submitted the National Pay Claim in March of this year, the CPI rate of inflation was 4.9%, (with the RPI version heading towards 7%) and our energy rises were just about manageable. Since then, the cost-of-living crisis has been accelerated, and yet the government set this year’s pay remit across the civil service as 2%, plus an extra 1% to be targeted at retention, productivity or other management priorities read more

PCS members at BEIS announce five-day strike (4 Nov) – PCS members working at the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy have announced five days’ strike action in disputes over pay and health and safety. Caterers employed by Aramark and cleaners, security guards, reception workers, post and porterage staff employed by ISS will take action at BEIS headquarters in Victoria Street, London on 16, 23 and 30 November, and 7 and 14 December. The Aramark employees run the canteen for BEIS staff, as well as providing food for trade delegations. They voted 100% ‘Yes’ for strike action on a 75% turnout after pay talks stalled over a period of months. PCS is urging BEIS, which holds the contract, to allow wages to increase read more

 Strike action continues in Magistrates Courts (28 Oct) – Legal advisors and court associates are nearing the end of their nine days of strike action in the dispute over the Common Platform computer system. The strike in HMCTS has been very successful with PCS members in over 65 magistrates courts across the country taking action against the Common Platform system. This week has seen three successful picket lines in Manchester, Peterborough, and Luton where the pickets received support from other PCS members who were not called to take strike action. There has been disruption all over England and Wales with cases adjourned and courts cancelled, often at the last minute. On one strike day in Manchester only four courts sat, 70 people were in custody, 20 cases were postponed and the court set an 11am arrival cut-off point for prisoners. Our online strike demo on 26 October was well attended and supported and provided an opportunity to hear from PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka and group assistant secretary and national executive member Karen Watts and there were plenty of messages of support from MPs and other unions. The strike has also had significant media coverage. After this round of strike action ends on 30 October, PCS will expect to get back around the table quickly with HMCTS and work to resolve the dispute. We have a mandate to take further action and reserve the right to call more strike action if necessary. Send solidarity messages to [email protected]. Donate to our fighting fund: PCS Fighting Fund Levy Account, sort code: 60-83-01, account no: 20331490, quoting transaction ref: MOJ CP Strike Donation read more

Support striking workers at HGS in Liverpool (25 Oct) – PCS members working for Hinduja Global Solutions (HGS) on the Disclosure and Barring Service contract in Liverpool are on their second week of their current period of strike action. The strike began on 17 October and will end on 29 October. The low paid workers also took 12 days of strike action during August and September in the dispute over pay and terms and conditions. The north west TUC has set up a fundraiser to help keep spirits up on the picket line by buying a hot drink for any striker who wants one.  You can donate as much as you can afford online. Any surplus money will be used to offer the same service to strikers from other affiliated unions read more   Sign petition to support striking workers at Hinduja Global Solutions

 

GMB

Unions respond to Hinkley Point fatality (14 Nov) – Unions GMB and Unite have responded to the death of a worker at the Hinkley Point C nuclear power station site in Somerset read more

Jacob’s Cream Crackers and Twiglets workers in all out strike (14 Nov) – More than 750 workers at the Jacobs Cream Crackers factory are to stage a permanent strike in anger at a real terms pay cut. Staff at the Aintree plant – who also make Jaffa Cakes, Twiglets, Club bars and Mini Cheddars – have been taking limited industrial action since September in their dispute over pay. From today [Monday 14 November 2022] factory staff, who make 14,000 tons of Jacobs cream crackers every year, will walk out every single day until boss agree to negotiate. There are 751 members at Aintree who have been taking industrial action since early September in pursuit of a pay award that meets their claim for cost of living. Yesterday the Company announced they were shifting production Jacobs Cream Crackers to Portugal in a bid to undermine the strike read more

Sunday dinner saved as GMB defends 175 jobs at chicken giant Moy Park (14 Nov) – GMB Union has today welcomed the news chicken products producer Moy Park has walked back threats to close one of its Derbyshire plants. This comes after weeks of negotiations and campaigning from GMB bosses re-consider closing the facility near Ashbourne, with the potential loss of hundreds of local jobs. Instead, the company will now undertake a huge  investment project, which will see the creation of 175 permanent jobs at the site read more

Workers to strike at Durham chemical company (14 Nov) – Almost 100 workers at a Durham chemical company have voted to strike in anger over a real terms pay cut. GMB members at Thomas Swan, in Consett, have overwhelmingly voted to take industrial action, with a majority of more than 92 per cent. Five 24 hour strikes will take place on 30 Nov, Dec 7, 14 and 21 and 4 Jan. A revised offer of 5.1 per cent – capped at £1,000, meaning the vast majority of the workforce would get even less – was overwhelmingly rejected read more

Sunderland bus strikes suspended (11 Nov) – Sunderland bus drivers have suspended their strike action to allow GMB members to vote on an improved pay offer. Talks between GMB Union and Stagecoach today [Friday] produced a new offer which members will now consider. The ballot opens on Monday [14 November and closes on Wednesday [16 November] read more

Newcastle energy workers vote to strike (11 Nov) – Workers at a Newcastle energy company have voted to strike in anger at a real terms pay cut. More than 200 workers at Baker Hughes, in Walker, will now take formal industrial action. Strike dates. will be announced in the coming days. GMB members at the company – makes pipelines for the oil and gas industry – have overwhelmingly turned down pay offers of as little as four per cent. With inflation at 12.3 per cent, both offers amount to massive real terms pay cut read more

‘Operational incident’ at Fawley Oil Refinery further increases risk of petrol shortage during strike (9 Nov) – GMB, the union at Fawley Oil Refinery, has warned contractors at the site petrol production will now almost certainly be affected by the forthcoming strike action, following part of a structure collapsing yesterday evening. The union understands ExxonMobil, which runs the site, was forced to isolate a unit after an incident occurred on the Catalytic Cracking Unit, leading to gas flaring. ExxonMobil describes the event as an ‘operational incident.’ GMB union members working for mechanical contractors at the site are set to take industrial action from 21 November over pay read more

Northern Ireland NHS workers vote to strike (8 Nov) – Hundreds of health workers in Northern Ireland have voted for strike action. GMB members working as nurses, ambulance workers, hospital porters, cleaners and caterers, clerical staff, technicians, care workers, social workers and transport workers voted to walk out by a margin of 86 per cent. The union will now meet with members to discuss next steps, with industrial action possible before Christmas. Health workers in Northern Ireland are angry over the lack of any kind of pay offer to help with the cost of living crush and unsafe staffing levels read more

Black Friday shortages loom as Amazon packing company votes to strike (7 Nov) – Amazon faces Black Friday shortages as workers at a packaging firm vote for strike action. Almost 1,000 GMB members at DS Smith, who also make corrugated packaging for Chivas, Princes and Seabrooks crisps, are balloting for industrial action over a real terms pay cut. In total 93 per cent of the GMB Members at the company, which count Brewdog, PepsiCo, Princes and KP snacks among its clients, voted in favour of industrial action. Workers in five sites – Louth, Lincolnshire, Featherstone, in Yorkshire, Clay Cross, in Derbyshire, Devizes, in Wiltshire and Livingston, in Scotland could take part in the strike, as early as the end of the month. DS Smith has tabled an offer of a 3 per cent consolidated increase plus a non-consolidated payment of £760 for 2022-23 which, with inflation at 12.3 per cent, represents a massive real terms pay cut for members who worked throughout the pandemic read more

Three week Waverley bin strike starts today (3 Nov) – GMB, the union for refuse workers, have announced that their members working in refuse within the borough of Waverley will be taking three weeks of strike action, starting this morning [3 November]. The members, employed by the council’s waste contractor Biffa, rejected a pay deal this morning and immediately commenced the first day of picketing. The dispute centres around pay, with members unhappy with the pay offer their employer has made, which falls well below the current rate of inflation read more

Chichester refuse workers being balloted for New Year bin strikes (3 Nov) – We can’t ignore our members’ clear instruction to either negotiate a deal which recognises their own true worth or organise for industrial action, says GMB union. GMB, the union for refuse workers have announced that their workers operating within Chichester District Council are set to be balloted over low pay. The council’s Chief Executive, Diane Shepherd has been informed that the ballot opens on Tuesday 8 November and closes on Tuesday 29 November. The dispute centres around low pay, with the members working in street cleansing, waste and recycling services demanding pay parity with colleagues working at Adur & Worthing and Brighton & Hove Councils, who deliver similar service for significantly higher wages. A ballot return in favour of strike action will see operatives and drivers walking out from January and possibly long into February and beyond read more

Strike action to hit oil terminal (26 Oct) – GMB members at oil logistics contractor Briggs Marine will begin strike action on Friday [28 October]. Workers voted overwhelmingly for industrial action at the oil logistics firm in Immingham, near Grimsby, after rejecting the company’s below inflation pay offer. Briggs Marine is one of the largest oil logistics companies in the UK, unloading fuel from all over the world and distributing for use across the UK. The strike is expected to have a significant impact on operations at the terminal read more

Christmas beer drought fears as Budweiser workers strike (18 Oct) – Hundreds of Budweiser workers are on strike again after talks collapsed. Staff at the beer giant’s Salmesbury site will now strike until 7am 22 October in anger at a real terms pay cut. Workers at the plant brew Budweiser, Stella Artois, Becks, Boddingtons and Export Pale Ale. Meetings between GMB, the company and conciliation service ACAS collapsed last week after bosses only upped their offer by £250 for 2023 read more

Polyflor profits hit £52 million as struggling workers strike (5 Oct) – Flooring company Polyflor has seen profits rise to more than £52 million while hard up workers take strike action to make ends meet, says GMB Union. James Holstead –  Polyflor’s parent company – posted a 9.6 per cent rise in revenue year-on-year to £291.9 million for the year that ended June 30. Pre-tax profit increased 1.6 per cent £52.1 million. Almost 200 workers at the firm are in midst of three weeks’ solid strike action until 14 October. Pickets will be staged from 8 to 10am and 4 to 6pm, Monday to Friday outside the factory on Radcliffe New Road, M45. Workers voted to strike over a pay dispute. Shortly after they received a message from the company saying ‘process shifts for process workers are to be suspended…please do not turn up for your shift(s) from 6am on Thursday 1st September’ read more

Walsall Housing Group strike extends into October – Industrial action at Walsall Housing Group will extend into next month, GMB Union has said. Almost 200 GMB members will walk out for six days in October 12, 14, 17, 21, 24 and 28. The industrial action comes on top of strike dates in September. Staff are angry after being offered just a 3.1 per cent day deal, amounting to massive real terms pay cut with RPI inflation at 12.3 per cent. Meanwhile Walsall Housing Group’s highest paid director was handed a 14 per cent pay rise between 2020 and 2021 read more

Solidarity with GMB after yet another arrest on a bin picket line – For the second time in months, GMB Southern Region officers have been arrested on a picket line of their striking refuse members. Previously, arrests were made on the Wealden picket. They appeared at Hastings Magistrates Court on 29th June. The case was adjourned to Brighton Crown Court and was due to take place on November 16th but has been delayed again. This is outrageous attacks on the right of trade unions to strike, picket and protest. The NSSN sends our continued solidarity and support read more about Surry strike

Sign petition – To St George’s University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust

Mitie out: Demand fair pay and conditions for staff at St George’s Hospital

 

Unison

BREAKING NEWS!! Winter warning as Environment Agency staff vote for strike, says UNISON (15 Nov) – Workers back action over pay. Environment Agency staff have voted overwhelmingly to strike over pay for the first time in the organisation’s 26-year history, says UNISON today (Tuesday). In the strike vote, 2,800 Agency staff were balloted by the union across England, including river inspectors, flood forecasting officers, coastal risk management officers and sewage plant attendants. Of those who took part, 73% voted to strike and 92% for action short of a strike. Earlier in the year staff, who also work on the Thames Barrier, maintain coastal defences, and manage the risk of flooding from rivers, reservoirs and the sea, rejected what they see as an insulting 2% pay offer (plus a £345 one-off payment), according to their union UNISON. Low wages over many years have forced large numbers of staff to quit the UK’s key environmental regulator. This has left the Agency struggling to fill vacancies, putting the remaining workforce under intolerable pressure, says UNISON read more

Strike vote is loud wake-up call to the government, says UNISON  (9 Nov) – A strike across the NHS this winter isn’t inevitable. Commenting on the likelihood of strikes across the NHS this winter following the Royal College of Nursing ballot, UNISON head of health Sara Gorton said: “This is loud a wake-up call to the government. Hundreds of thousands more nurses, paramedics, cleaners, health care assistants and other NHS employees are still to decide if they’ll be striking for better pay and staffing. Now is the time for swift action to avoid a damaging dispute. A strike across the NHS this winter isn’t inevitable. Unions want to work with ministers to solve the NHS staffing crisis and its impact on patient care. But that must start with another pay rise for health workers. Otherwise, delays and waits for patients won’t reduce…” read more

Vote yes for the NHS: UNISON urges backing for strike action (1 Nov) – UNISON recommends members vote ‘yes’ for strike action in order to fight for a better pay deal and to help the NHS recruit and retain staff. Some 350,000 NHS employees working across England, Wales and Northern Ireland are being asked to vote on strike action over pay this winter read more

Working a day every week for free at the Environment Agency (21 Oct) – UNISON members at the agency have seen pay fall since 2011, but now these vital workers are balloting for industrial action – and three explain why they’re voting ‘yes’ read more

Stop Hackney Council cutting library services read more about the campaign here. Lobby of full council meeting at Hackney Town Hall – 6pm Wednesday 23rd November

Workers at Leeds Beckett University begin strike over pay, says UNISON – Low pay has been a massive, and growing, problem in the university sector for a decade and more. Low-paid employees at Leeds Beckett University will walk out today (4 Oct) in a row about pay, says UNISON. The workers – including those in administrative, cleaning, library, security and catering services – will continue their strike tomorrow and Thursday after rejecting a 3% pay award from the University and Colleges Employers Association. UNISON had called for an increase of 2% above the rate of inflation, currently running at 9.9%. With further rises in the cost of living expected, the award effectively amounts to a pay cut, the union says read more

University staff to strike over pay as new term begins – Workers have reached breaking point and have little choice but to strike. Thousands of university staff including administrators, cleaners, library, security and catering employees are to walk out in a wave of strikes that will hit universities from today (Tuesday), says UNISON. Universities will be disrupted across England and Scotland as employees push for a fair pay rise that takes account of soaring cost of living pressures and years of below-inflation awards, says the union. The workers, among the lowest paid in the higher education sector, took the difficult decision to strike after rejecting a 3% pay award from the University and Colleges Employers Association in May, the union says. Staff are asking for a wage increase of 2% above inflation, the lowest measure for which is currently 9.8% read more for details of picket lines

Support striking care workers at St Monika Trust in Bristol – Care workers, registered nurses and residential home staff employed by Bristol-based St Monica Trust have been taking action over fire and rehire threats and cuts to pay read more

There is a strike fund which is being collected for. Many of these workers are low paid and part time. With cost of living ever rising it’s essential that we can ensure no one feels like they can’t stand up with their colleagues and strike for fear of lost pay. The union will be paying strike pay and members can request hardship payments up to their full wages so no one gets left behind.

For donations please send to the following details with the reference “SMT”

Account name: UNISON South West; Account number: 49021079; Sort Code: 60-83-01

 

NIPSA

Economic Forecasts and Framing the “Austerity” Lie (14 Nov) – from Carmel Gates NIPSA General Secretary: “We commented in the middle of last month that amidst the chaos and political uncertainty at Westminster one thing was clear. This was, that despite the media focus being on the plotting and ambition of careerist, already well paid MPs and Government Ministers, “when the music stopped” it would be workers and their families who would be expected to pay the price of their economic incompetence. This has happened already with the Bank of England’s decision to raise interest rates and thus increase mortgage and other credit costs compounding the already intolerable economic pressures of the “cost of living” crisis…” read more

NIPSA Health Service Ballot Opens Today – 27 October 2022 – The NIPSA Industrial Action ballot of Health Service members opens today, 27 October and closes 18 November 2022. NIPSA is urging all members to have their say in regards to Pay, Unsafe Staffing Levels and Travel Reimbursement rates all of which have been subject to historical under investment. The ballot is seeking majority support for actions including strike and action short of strike action read more

 

Royal College of Nursing

NHS pay ballot results: members vote to strike at majority of NHS employers across the UK (9 Nov) – Results of our biggest ever strike ballot show record numbers of nursing staff are prepared to join picket lines this winter. Members eligible to vote in the ballot will find out by email whether strike action will happen where they work. Overall results show members at the majority of NHS employers across the UK have voted to take strike action in their fight for fair pay and safe staffing. Strikes will now take place at the NHS trusts or health boards that have met the relevant legal requirements. Many of the biggest hospitals in England will see strike action by RCN members but others narrowly missed the legal turnout thresholds to qualify for action. All NHS employers in Northern Ireland and Scotland will be included and all bar one of the health boards in Wales met the relevant legal thresholds. Members working at St Thomas’ Hospital in London, opposite the House of Commons, will be taking strike action as well as members working at other leading hospitals in capital cities of the UK – the Royal Infirmary of Edinburgh, University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff and Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast. Industrial action is expected to begin before the end of this year, with more detailed plans and timelines announced shortly. The RCN will ensure that strike action is carried out legally and safely at all times. Our mandate to organise strikes runs until early May 2023, six months after members finished voting read more

 

Royal College of Midwives

Northern Ireland Government must ‘get its act together’ on pay says RCM say (14 Nov) – Midwives and maternity support worker (MSW) members of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) across Northern Ireland have said resoundingly that they are prepared to take industrial action, including strike action if necessary, over the lack of a pay award in Northern Ireland. The result comes after the RCM consultation on pay closed last week. In Northern Ireland, over nine out of 10 midwives who responded to the survey said they would be prepared to take industrial action consisting of a strike if no pay award was agreed. Nearly 90% also said they would be prepared to take industrial action if the current NHS Pay Review Body’s (PRB) recommendations are implemented read more

RCM urges midwives to vote yes to industrial action as England and Wales pay ballot opens (11 Nov) – The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has today launched only its second ballot on industrial action in England and its first in Wales in its142 year history. The College, which represents most midwives and also maternity support workers (MSWs) in the UK, is calling on its members to vote yes to industrial action over pay. The RCM’s 30,000 eligible members working in the NHS in England and Wales will be asked two questions: whether they are prepared to take industrial action short of a strike, and whether they are prepared to take strike action. The postal ballot is due to close at midday on 12 December. The move comes after a consultation which saw RCM members overwhelmingly reject the Westminster and Wales Governments’ below-inflation 4% pay award. Two-thirds of eligible members in England and more than eight out of 10 in Wales took part in the consultation, with three-quarters (75%) saying they wanted to be balloted on industrial action read more

Scotland’s midwives vote yes to industrial action over pay (27 Oct) – Midwife and maternity support worker (MSW) members of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM) across Scotland have overwhelmingly voted yes on taking industrial action, up to and including strike action, over the Scottish Government’s ‘insulting’ pay offer. Smashing through the Government imposed ballot threshold, the result comes after the RCM ballot on pay closed earlier today. In a turnout of 61% of eligible voters over 88% voted yes to taking industrial action consisting of a strike. On the question are you prepared to take industrial action short of a strike, 94.6% voted yes…The RCM says if industrial action takes place, NHS employers in Scotland will be given adequate notice of any type of industrial action read more

 

BMA

BMA Junior Doctors have tweeted today (17 Oct): Starting around January 9 2023, we will ballot junior doctor members in England for industrial action. Keep up to date via @BMA_JuniorDocs on twitter

Government refuse to engage – We are deeply disappointed that despite ample opportunity, Ministers have ignored our calls to value junior doctors appropriately and duly restore their pay to 2008/09 levels. We requested official approval from BMA council, the union’s principal executive committee, to ballot members in England around the 9 January 2023 for industrial action. The last two years have been far from ordinary for anyone working in the NHS and junior doctors have made both an enormous contribution and a significant sacrifice. The effects on their wellbeing are likely to be felt for years to come whilst tackling the daunting backlog of treatment for patients. And yet none of this is recognised by the government, who by refusing an enhanced uplift, are simply further eroding junior doctors’ pay read more

 

NEU

Sixth Form Colleges Ballot Result (14 Nov) – NEU members who teach in sixth form colleges in England have voted to take strike action in response to an offer from the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA). NEU members who teach in sixth form colleges in England have voted to take strike action in response to an offer from the Sixth Form Colleges Association (SFCA). Sixth form college teachers have seen a 20% cut in real terms pay since 2010. The SFCA’s offer would see the majority of teachers receive a 5% pay award, rising to 8.9% for a small minority. With one voice, NEU sixth form teachers have today declared that ‘enough is enough’ and are calling on the Secretary of State for Education to fully fund their pay demand of an inflation-plus rise. The question put was “Are you prepared to take part in strike action in furtherance of this dispute?” 88.5% voted YES on a turnout of 63%. The ballot opened on 18 October 2022 and closed on 11 November 2022. The formal ballot was a combined vote across all affected sixth form colleges and is likely to see a national strike in the sector for the first time since 2016. The first planned day of strike action is Wednesday 30 November read more

NEU announces dates of formal ballots over pay (18 Oct) – NEU writes to employers with notification of intention to carry out national ballots. Today the National Education Union is writing to employers with notification of our intention to carry out national ballots of around 300,000 teacher and support staff members in England and Wales. These formal postal ballots will open on Friday 28 October 2022 and close on Friday 13 January 2023. Dates for potential strike action are yet to be decided, but likely to be from week commencing 30 January 2023.  In our recent indicative ballots, which closed last week:-

– 62% of teacher members and 68% of support staff members in more than 23,000 schools voted;

– 98% of teacher members believe that all teachers should receive a fully funded, above-inflation pay rise;

– 86% of teacher members would be willing to take strike action to demand that rise;

– 92% of support staff reject the employers’ final pay offer for 2022/23;

– 78% of support staff would vote yes to strike action.

The formal ballots will ask members “Are you prepared to take strike action in furtherance of this dispute?” Each dispute is about the failure to give a commitment for a fully funded above-inflation pay rise (as measured by September 2022 RPI) read more

Support this strike:-

Nottingham Academy/Nottingham City: 8-9 November [email protected]

 

NASUWT

Pay cuts hitting disabled teachers (12 Nov) – 85% of teachers with disabilities say they are worried about their financial situation, with the cost of living crisis and years of real terms teachers’ pay cuts compounding the financial vulnerabilities typically experienced by workers with disabilities. Members attending the NASUWT-The Teachers Union Disabled Teachers’ Consultation Conference today in Birmingham and online reported the continuing struggles they are experiencing, both financially and also in terms of discrimination and prejudice in the workplace read more

Industrial action at Glasgow school over failure to protect teachers from abuse (10 Nov) – Members of NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union at Bannerman High School in Glasgow are beginning a programme of industrial action, which will include 12 days of strike action, in response to failures by the employer to address teachers’ concerns over violent and abusive pupil behaviour. The Union has issued instructions to members to refuse to teach pupils who are known by the school to be threatening and abusive. However, Glasgow City Council has written to the Union’s members to tell them they will be sent home without pay if they refuse to stay in a classroom with a pupil who is threatening their safety read more

NASUWT announces IOM teachers strike action (3 Nov) – Members of NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union in the Isle of Man will take six days of strike action over the coming months in an escalation of their current dispute with the DESC over pay, workload and working practices. Strike action is planned for 30th November, 1st December, 11th and 12th January and 15th and 16th February. The strike action has been called after NASUWT members overwhelmingly rejected a revised pay offer read more

Ballot opens on industrial action over teachers’ pay (27 Oct) – The NASUWT-The Teachers’ Union is today (Thursday) opening its formal statutory industrial action ballot of teachers in England and Wales over pay. The ballot in England and Wales will remain open until 9 January. The Union opened a ballot of members in Scotland yesterday (Wednesday) which will remain open until 21 November. The ballots are the result of the failure by the Westminster, Scottish and Welsh governments and employers to guarantee teachers and headteachers a fully-funded real-terms pay award of 12%. Members in schools and sixth-form colleges are being balloted over both strike action and action short of strike action. A timetable for and details of what any possible industrial action will entail will be determined once the ballots are concluded read more

 

EIS

EIS to call Teachers out on Strike Action on 24 November (10 Nov) – The EIS is to call its members in Scotland’s schools out on strike action on Thursday 24 November. This will be the first day of strike action following the result of an EIS statutory ballot, announced earlier today, in which 96% voted in favour of strike action on a turnout of 71%. The national day of strike action over pay will be the first such action in Scotland’s schools for four decades – a clear indication of the current level of anger and frustration amongst teachers. Following the announcement of the ballot result at lunchtime today, the EIS Executive Committee held a special meeting this afternoon, and agreed an initial day of national strike action two weeks from today. Further industrial action dates will be agreed at a normal meeting of EIS Executive tomorrow read more

EIS statutory ballot result delivers overwhelming mandate for teacher strike over pay (10 Nov) – Teachers and associated professionals across Scotland have voted overwhelmingly for strike action over pay, in a statutory ballot organised by the EIS. The ballot closed earlier this week  and the result has now been announced, with 96% voting in favour of strike action on a turnout of 71%. Commenting following the result, EIS General Secretary Andrea Bradley said, “This ballot result provides the EIS with an extremely strong mandate for strike action over pay. Our members have sent yet another very clear message to their employers in Scottish local authorities and to the Scottish Government that they must do better on teachers’ pay read more

EIS Opens Industrial Action Ballot over Safety of Staff at Northfield Academy (31 Oct) – The EIS has opened a statutory industrial action ballot for its members at Northfield Academy in Aberdeen. The ballot has been prompted by serious concerns over the safety of staff, resulting from extremely challenging behaviour by a small percentage of pupils at the school. Despite the EIS taking a number of steps to seek to address the issue, the lack of an adequate response from school leadership and the local authority has now compelled the EIS to seek a mandate for industrial action read more

EIS-ULA Opens Statutory Ballot (29 Sept) – The EIS has today (Thursday) opened a statutory ballot for industrial action for its members in the Higher Education Sector. Following a consultative ballot, which strongly indicated members of the EIS University Lecturers’ Association (EIS-ULA) wished to take action in the current pay dispute, the EIS-ULA Executive is recommending members vote yes to strike action read more

 

UCU

UCU: Biggest ever university strikes set to hit UK campuses over pay, conditions & pensions (8 Nov) – Over 70,000 university staff at 150 universities will strike for three days later this month over attacks on pay, working conditions and pensions. The National Union of Students (NUS) has backed the strikes, which will be the biggest ever to hit UK universities and could impact 2.5 million students. UCU said disruption can be avoided if employers act fast and make improved offers. If they don’t, strike action will escalate in the New Year alongside a marking and assessment boycott. The full strike dates in November are: Thursday 24 November, Friday 25 November, and Wednesday 30 November. Staff will also begin industrial action short of strike action from Wednesday 23 November, which includes working to rule, refusing to make up work lost as a result of strike action and refusing to cover for absent colleagues. The strikes come after UCU members overwhelmingly voted ‘yes’ to industrial action last month in two historic national ballots over attacks on pay and working conditions as well as pension cuts. Despite the result, vice-chancellors have not made any improved offers. read more

UCU is calling a national strike demonstration in London on the 3rd strike day – Wednesday 30th November

UCU strike rally Nov 30

Union calls on Cambridge PhDs to receive fairer funding (14 Nov) – The University and College Union (UCU) has today called on the Cambridge Trust to increase the funding it provides to PhD students at the University of Cambridge. The Cambridge Commonwealth, European & International Trust offers scholarships to students from the UK and overseas who are studying at the University of Cambridge read more

North East college group threatens to axe up to 19 staff (11 Nov) – Sunderland College, Hartlepool Sixth Form and Northumberland College are threatening to sack up to 19 staff before Christmas. Most of the staff set to be sacked are academic mentors who earn just £20k per year supporting, motivating and guiding hundreds of students at the colleges to reach their full potential. The colleges are run by Education Partnership North East, which will bank £280k by making the cuts read more

Sheffield International College to be hit with 5 days of strikes over low pay (7 Nov) – UCU members at the University of Sheffield International College will take five days of strike action from Thursday 17 November in a long running dispute over low pay. The action will be the first ever strike to take place in a privatised higher education provider. The full days of strike action are: Thursday 17 November, Friday 18 November, Monday 28 November, Tuesday 29 November, Wednesday 30 November. Staff will also work to rule from Monday 21 November, which includes working strictly to their contracted hours, refusing to make up work lost as a result of strike action and refusing to cover for absent colleagues. Last month an overwhelming 84% of staff who voted said yes to strike action after employers refused to raise pay by more than 5%. The turnout in the ballot was over 83%. UCU is demanding a pay award of at least 12% to help staff meet the cost of living crisis read more

Strike over low pay set to hit Barnet & Southgate College open day (3 Nov) – Barnet and Southgate College will be hit with strike action on Wednesday 16 November, impacting the college’s open day. Staff have already taken three days of strike action in the dispute which is over management’s paltry 2% pay award for the previous two financial years (1% 2020/21 and 1% 2021/2). Inflation is currently at 12.6% and UCU is demanding a significant uplift to help staff meet the cost of living crisis. UCU said the college has two weeks to make a meaningful pay offer or its members will picket the college open day on at the High Barnet Campus on Wednesday 16 November read more

Strike ballot opens at Darlington College over low pay (2 Nov) – UCU members at Darlington College are being balloted for strike action in a dispute over low pay. The ballot opened on Monday and will run until Monday 14 November. The ballot comes after the employer imposed a pay award of just 1% alongside a one off payment of £250. RPI is currently at 12.6% so the award means staff pay has fallen dramatically behind inflation. UCU is demanding a pay award of at least 10% to help staff meet the cost-of-living crisis. Staff at Hopwood Hall College in Rochdale, Greater Manchester, have just won a deal worth 9.2% for the majority of college lecturers read more

UCU members win 9.2% pay award at Hopwood Hall College in Rochdale (1 Nov) – UCU welcomed a pay deal which will see most lecturers at Hopwood Hall College in Rochdale awarded a 9.2% increase in pay. An overwhelming 98% of UCU members at Hopwood voted to accept the offer, which will arrive in this month’s pay packets and is back dated to August. The deal is worth 9.2% for most lecturers. For new lecturers who are at the bottom of the spine and for Skills Development Coaches the deal is worth 20.25%, over £5k. All pay awards are consolidated. The deal also includes a commitment to creating a joint workload agreement with UCU before the end of the academic year. Staff at Hopwood Hall called off strike action earlier this year due to meaningful pay negotiations taking place. Elsewhere, more than 30 colleges across England have seen up to 10 days of strike action over the past two months over pay, in what has been the biggest wave of industrial action English further education has ever seen. Many disputes are still live and UCU is calling on other colleges to follow Hopwood and make pay offers that help staff deal with the cost of living crisis if they want to avoid any further disruption read more

University staff vote for UK-wide strike action in historic ballot (24 Oct) – Over 70,000 university staff at 150 universities could now strike after UCU members overwhelmingly voted ‘yes’ to strike action in two historic national ballots. The results in both ballots saw the union deliver momentous turnouts that beat the anti-union threshold. More than eight in ten of those who voted said ‘yes’ to strike action. The union now has a mandate to deliver strike action at practically every university in the UK and has called on vice chancellors to enter negotiations immediately and make improved offers in order to avoid disruption. Staff were balloted across two separate ballots: pay & working conditions, and cuts to pensions. In the pay and working condition ballot, the yes vote for strike action was 81.1% and the turnout was 57.8%. In the pension ballot, the yes vote for strike action was 84.9% and the turnout was 60.2%. Staff also voted yes overwhelmingly for action short of strike in both ballots. UCU said the result is a clear indication of the anger felt by university staff read more

Prison educators vote to strike across England over low pay (6 Oct) – Over 400 staff working in education at 48 prisons and youth offender institutions across England could walk out after voting for strike action. Members voted overwhelmingly for strike action with 94.47% of those voting, voting ‘YES’ in a vote that surpassed the 50% turnout threshold imposed by Tory anti trade union legislation. The prison educators, who are employed by Novus, have seen their pay fall by more than 25% since 2009. Prison education is already one of the lowest paid sectors, as highlighted by the House of Commons Education Select Committee read more

UCU fighting fund: the link is here and donations to the fund are spent on supporting members involved in important disputes.

 

FBU

BREAKING NEWS!! Firefighters reject pay offer and strike ballot dates announced (Nov 15) – Firefighters and control staff have voted to reject a 5% pay offer in a result that FBU leadership say displays “remarkable strength of feeling”. A strike ballot will now be held. In the consultative ballot 79% voted to reject the 5% offer, with 78% of eligible members voting in the ballot. A ballot on strike action will open on Monday 5 December to Monday 23 January. If you’re an FBU member and your postal address has changed or you think it might be wrong, it is absolutely vital that you contact [email protected] as soon as possible. Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union general secretary, said: “FBU members have spoken. This result of the consultative ballot, on a two week turnaround, shows that there is remarkable strength of feeling amongst firefighters and control staff on this derisory pay offer. The ball is in the employers’ and government’s court. There is still an opportunity to resolve this dispute and we will be writing to Fire Ministers and government departments across the UK requesting urgent meetings. We have firefighters using foodbanks. Our members worked through the pandemic to help protect their communities, taking on extra duties to do so. A further real-terms pay cuts is an absolutely disgusting way to thank them. Whilst strike action is always a last resort, our members simply can’t go on like this” read more

Firefighters vote to reject pay offer in consultative ballot (14 Nov) – Firefighters and control staff have voted to reject a 5% pay offer in a result that FBU leadership say displays “remarkable strength of feeling”. 79% voted to reject the 5% offer, with 78% of eligible members voting in the ballot. The ballot was a consultative ballot of union members on the 5% pay offer and not a ballot for strike action. Next steps will now be decided by the Executive Council, but the union will be moving to a ballot on strike action. Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union general secretary, said: “FBU members have spoken. This result, on a two week turnaround, shows that there is remarkable strength of feeling amongst firefighters and control staff on this derisory pay offer. The ball is in the employers’ and government’s court. There is still an opportunity to resolve this dispute and we will be writing to Fire Ministers and government departments across the UK requesting urgent meetings read more

FBU Scotland makes strides on DECON (14 Nov) – There has been significant progress in Scotland on the FBU’s groundbreaking DECON campaign. The DECON campaign aims to protect firefighters from toxic contaminants and the deadly illnesses they can cause read more

Merseyside firefighters, control staff and Green Book staff vote for Action Short of Strike (14 Nov) – Merseyside firefighters, control staff and green book staff (non-uniformed staff) have “overwhelmingly” voted to take action short of strike in relation to a host of issues in Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service. The percentage of those voting who voted “Yes” to Action Short of Strike is 88.06%. The action short of strike will consist of a refusal to undertake pre-arranged overtime, beginning no earlier than Thursday 1st December 2022 and potentially lasting for 6 months. The ballot comes after a serious break down in industrial relations between Merseyside Fire Brigades Union and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Authority and the failure to reach agreement on several issues read more

“Absolutely and utterly untrue”: Matt Wrack replies to misleading comments on FBU’s Covid role in Parliament (14 Nov) – FBU general secretary Matt Wrack gave evidence to the Home Affairs select committee in Westminster last week. The select committee is made up of MPs. Matt gave evidence on a range of current issues in the fire and rescue service including pay and conditions, wildfires and climate change, Grenfell, and more read more

FBU Grenfell inquiry closing submission: “disaster is direct consequence of government policies” (9 Nov) – As the Grenfell Tower Inquiry draws to a close, the FBU’s lawyer has told the Inquiry that “the disaster was a direct consequence of a generation of government policies which combined to create a death trap for the residents of Grenfell Tower” read more

New: fire and rescue bosses have used controversial “retire and rehire” practice (9 Nov) – New data shows that a controversial practice that allows fire service bosses to halt pension contributions and receive tax-free payments has been used in 13 fire and rescue services. The government has formally discouraged the practice in England. The practice involves predominantly senior fire officers retiring and then being re-appointed into the same or a similar post, in arrangement with their employer. The practice allows them to access a quarter of their pension pot as a tax-free lump sum and then return to post and cease paying employee pension contributions.  The employing fire and rescue authority also ceases to pay pension contributions read more

 

POA

General Secretary update (10 Nov) – In the past I have updated the POA membership about new restrictions on Trade Unions through legislation on The Trade Union Act 2016 which was first implemented on 1st March 2017. I wish once again to point out the main restrictions particularly when balloting for industrial action. The POA recognise that there are areas within our membership where we can take legitimate action on identifiable trades disputes. For the majority in our Union, we are prohibited to induce Prison Officer Grades to take any form of industrial action. We find ourselves under a permanent injunction and we have also been foundguilty of contempt of court when allegedly in breach of the permanent injunction. The POA continue to campaign and challenge legally against this grossly unfair piece of legislation that should have no place in a modern society and it is ironic that at National level in England and Wales Prison Service we actually have a good relationship with Phil Copple Director General Operations and fellow Directors, and we work in a partnership approach to problem solving. That doesn’t mean we always agree with the employer or that they agree with us but there clearly is a different approach and a more mature approach from both sides than had taken place in the past, but we still believe to put us on a proper industrial relation footing we should have free collective bargaining with the right to strike when all else fails read more

 

BFAWU

Trade Union Coordinating Group “Fair Pay Now” pamphlet read more

Support the campaign to unionise Samworth Brothers – get organised, sign the petition read more

 

NUJ

NEC condemns journalists’ arrests (14 Nov) – The union’s national executive council has passed a motion in support of members. The arrests and harassment of journalists at Just Stop Oil protests in November has been condemned by the union. The National Union of Journalists’ NEC discussed the issue at a meeting on 11 November, committing to provide ongoing support to members read more

NUJ supports members at The Independent in pursuing meaningful consultation to avoid redundancies (8 Nov) – Union urges company to reconsider its position to prevent job cuts. NUJ senior officials are advising and supporting our members in the process of consultation on the decision by The Independent to place around 30 editorial roles at risk of redundancy, as part of a proposed programme of the reduction of 52 jobs, within the publisher. The union is working with members in urgent ongoing meetings to give them support in their efforts to reverse plans for such devastating job losses read more

 

Prospect

Prospect civil and public services industrial action indicative ballot (3 Nov) – Our members in the civil service and wider public sector are under unparalleled attack. Prospect’s Public Services Executive has concluded that if the attacks on members are not challenged – they will only increase and intensify read more

Prospect ballots members at AWE on industrial action over pay (19 Oct) – Prospect will ballot its members on industrial action over pay at the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE). Headquartered in Aldermaston, Berkshire, AWE supports and maintains the UK nuclear deterrent. The ballot opens on 24th October and will run for two weeks. Unite union will also be balloting about the same issue read more

 

UVW

#SAVEASIRT: Immigration legal support charity threatened with closure (9 Nov) – “We are concerned that closing the organisation is a bid to avoid accountability” – Eve Phillips, an immigration caseworker for ASIRT and UVW member. A charity who provides free legal advice to asylum seekers and people subject to immigration control in Birmingham and the West Midlands is closing down, despite being financially healthy, after trustees rejected a request for union recognition by all the staff. Workers at the Asylum Support and Immigration Resource Team (ASIRT) in Birmingham are calling for the charity to be saved, so they can continue providing asylum seekers the legal advice and support they need read more

 

IWGB

BREAKING NEWS!! From @IWGBunion on twitter – Members at UCL have decided to postpone day 3 of the strike, so please don’t come down to the picket today! It’s been incredible to see the support and energy these first couple of days, thank you to everyone who came. Watch this space for what’s coming next

UCL breaks commitment to equal terms and a living wage for all, bringing in agency workers to undermine the ongoing strike by IWGB workers (15 Nov) – The ongoing strike followed a unanimous ballot for industrial action by hundreds of outsourced security workers from the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) demanding £15/hour, union recognition and an end to outsourcing where they work at University College London (UCL). Over 150 people attended the picket line yesterday, which begins again today at 6am at the entrance to UCL on Malet Place, followed by a protest with guest speakers including Owen Jones and John McDonnell MP from 8.15am. On the morning of Friday 11 November, a few days before industrial action was due to begin, UCL security staff woke to find their overtime shifts for the following days and weeks had been cancelled without explanation. Further enquiries revealed that the directive came from Bidvest Noonan’s managing director, Sarah Cork, and that Bidvest Noonan workers at UCL have been stripped of all overtime shifts, which for some amounts to as much as a one third cut to their monthly take home pay. The base £15/hour rate demanded for all outsourced workers is equivalent to the wage of security staff over twenty two years ago, before outsourcing was introduced read more

Hundreds of workers paid half what they were 20 years ago, to strike at UCL for equal rights and an end to poverty pay (11 Nov) – Following a unanimous ballot for industrial action, hundreds of outsourced security workers from the Independent Workers’ Union of Great Britain (IWGB) will go on strike 14-16 November, demanding £15/hour, union recognition and an end to outsourcing where they work at University College London (UCL). On the mornings of 14, 15 and 16 November, a picket line will begin at 6am at the entrance to UCL on Malet Place, followed by guest speakers at 7:30am and a protest 8.30-10am read more   Donate to strike fund

 

SIPTU (Ireland)

Construction unions to seek early compensation for soaring rise in living costs (11 Nov) – The unions which make up the ICTU Congress Construction Industrial Committee (CIC) will commence lodging claims with employers in the construction sector for improvements in pay to restore the living standards of workers in the sector. Workers in the sector received a 2.8% pay increase in February 2022. However, the high levels of price inflation have meant that the value of this increase has been considerably eroded. The decision to commence lodging claims follows an unproductive meeting with employer representatives at the Construction Industry Federation on Wednesday, 9th November 2022 read more

 

Mandate

Raise the Roof Dáil Campaign Group to Hold National Rally for Housing on 26th November and Series of Public Meetings across Dublin (1 Nov) – The Raise the Roof campaign group is to stage a national Rally for Housing in Dublin on Saturday, 26th November, as part of a wider initiative that will also see a series of major public meetings on housing in the capital, over the coming weeks read more

 

Other news

FROM PENTONVILLE TO P&O: union rights & tory wrongs: campaigning for free trade unions – conference hosted by the Campaign for Trade Union Freedom, supported by the Institute of Employment RightsSaturday 3rd December from 11am, Hamilton House NEU National Office, Mabledon Place London read more

SHAC the Social Housing Action Campaign’ and other housing campaigners are demanding a freeze on social rents, shareholder rents, and service charges. The campaign is already moving government. In August, government announced a cap on around 5% (instead of the 10% that would have been likely under the previous formula). But we don’t believe that this is low enough or broad enough. We need urgent funding to pay for campaign materials and basic admin costs. We also need trade unions to help us get our message across. Please see here to find out more, download our model motions for unions, or make a donation to account name ‘The Social Housing Action Campaign’, account number 20434685, Sort Code 60-83-01

 

International News

Algeria: Ramzi Derder released from prison read more

 

Fight blacklisting and victimisation of union reps

QC appointed to lead the independent Unite inquiry into blacklisting – Unite is delighted to announce that Nick Randall QC and John Carl Townsend have been appointed to investigate the possible collusion by union officers in blacklisting. Over the past months, evidence gathering by Thompsons solicitors has continued, with many blacklisted construction workers and other witnesses having already been interviewed. The work of the independent investigators is expected to start officially on 11 April read more

#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/blacklist-SG/

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

 

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. Also, check out Organise Now! – Support for new worker organising.

 

Diary

 

CONTACT US

PHONE 07952 283 558

EMAIL mailto:[email protected]

 

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ADDRESS NSSN, PO Box 54498, London E10 9DE