Solidarity Magazine » Events Fri, 01 Mar 2013 19:29:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Eurostar/ St Pancras International cleaners strike suspended Thu, 01 Mar 2012 10:50:59 +0000 Continue reading ]]> RAIL UNION RMT confirmed today that in order to allow for further negotiations to try and resolve the pay dispute with Initial on the Eurostar contract, the following strike action has been suspended:-
· 06:00 hours on Thursday 1st March 2012 until 05:59 hours on Saturday 3rd March 2012
RMT members will work as normal and further updates will be issued by the union in due course.

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Rebuilding working-class education Mon, 16 Jan 2012 12:39:53 +0000 Continue reading ]]> REBUILDING THE TRADITION OF INDEPENDENT WORKING-CLASS EDUCATION


Saturday 4th February 2012

10.30 – 3.30

Brunswick Centre, near Russell Square Tube, London

£6.00 includes lunch. Pay on the day.

Please email now to confirm / book your place

“How can Independent Working-Class Education contribute to today’s class struggle? What can we learn from history?”

The programme will be participatory, valuing what colleagues bring to the day. Presentations will include:

Colin Waugh: Lessons from the Plebs Strike; Louise Raw: The Matchworkers’ Struggle;  Jane Martin: Organising for Socialism: Mary Bridges Adams and IWCE; John Grigg: The Work of Labour Heritage; Mary Davis: Shop Stewards Education and Women – a neglected majority of the working class; Dave Welsh: Trades Councils and Workers’ Education today – New Directions.

Directions: from Russell Square Tube follow Marchmont Street to Entrance One of the Brunswick Centre / big block of flats. There will be signs. Put Flat 10 (Community Centre) in entry phone and ring. Lift to Floor 2. Follow signs.

IWCE Project tries to

  • Develop a diverse range of education materials and approaches for trade union and other working-class and progressive movement groups
  • Respect the role of the working class in making history, and in making the future.
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RMT confirms Tyne and Wear Metro strike in pensions fight Thu, 24 Nov 2011 16:09:30 +0000 Continue reading ]]> TRANSPORT UNION RMT confirmed today that members on the Tyne and Wear Metro working for DB Regio and Nexus will strike alongside public sector colleagues on the 30th November.

Following a vote of more than 80% in favour all members are to take strike action by not booking on for any turn of duty commencing between 00:01hours and 23:59 hours on Wednesday 30th November 2011.

In addition, all members are to take action short of strike in the form of an Overtime and Rest Day working ban between 00:01hrs and 23:59hrs on Wednesday 30th November 2011.

As well as the Metro the action will also hit ferry services.

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:

With a massive mandate for action we can expect absolutely rock solid support from our members in the North East on the 30th November.

We will be sending the clearest message to the Government that we will defend our pensions to the hilt. RMT will be there shoulder to shoulder with millions of other public sector workers taking action next week to resist the attack on pensions.

It’s the bankers and the bosses who have gambled with our country’s future and the men and women who make this country tick should not have tolerate a worse pension and be forced to work longer to make up for their mistakes.

RMT members on Tyne and Wear Metro and the Royal Fleet Auxiliary have shown that they are not going to sit back and take this outrageous attempt to consign them to a life of poverty in their old age.

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Unite strikes at Fujitsu Fri, 16 Sep 2011 13:47:31 +0000 Continue reading ]]> Unite workers in Manchester and Crewe have voted to take Strike action this Monday (the 19th).  Work to rule, including and overtime ban is already taking place in response to the victimisation of Crewe Unite rep Alan Jenney who’s contract was breached in order for him to be made redundant by the company. Unite is also concerned that Fujitsu will renege on earlier promises with regards to pensions and redundancy.

Read a leaflet explaining why you should support the workers here.

Unite has organised a public rally at 8 AM at Fujitsu, Central Park, Northampton Road, Manchester

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Strike action spreads in Southampton – Social Work staff to strike Thu, 28 Jul 2011 10:20:55 +0000 Continue reading ]]> Update from Mike Tucker UNISON NEC and Southampton Branch Secretary

Thanks to Union Futures website

Industrial Action
On Wednesday 3 August, up to 450 social work staff in both Children’s Services and Adult Services will strike for one day as part of the ongoing dispute over pay cuts. While cutting the pay of social care staff by 5%, the City Council responded to the threat of mass resignations of Child Protection Social Workers by making a “market supplement” payment to them of £1400 a year.

For newly qualified Social Workers, this payment was equivalent to the 5% pay cut, for more experienced workers, it is less than they are having taken from their pay. This £1400 payment has caused widespread anger among all social care staff. It is not being paid to all Social Workers in Children’s Social Services and is not being paid at all in Adult Services. Two mass meetings of social care staff were held in July and both voted to strike.

In addition to the one day strike, groups of social work staff are to start a period of extended strike action from 4 August. Details of the work groups who will strike will be issued tomorrow.

There will be widespread picket lines across Southampton on 3 August, and a rally at 11.00 a.m. in Guildhall Square. The social work staff will meet at 12 noon on 3 August to decide what further strikes to call. Messages of support for 3 August would be appreciated.

Strike action across the City is continuing. This week there are strikes in Street Cleansing, Parking Operations, Vehicle Workshops and the Itchen Bridge. Further strikes will be announced on Monday 1 August. Despite the imposition of the pay cuts on 11 July, the industrial action continues.

2. Legal Action Against the Council
The collective Employment Tribunal against the Council, taken out by UNISON and Unite for failure to consult on the dismissals, is not expected to be heard until 2012. This is because the Council have claimed that the hearing will take between 5 and 6 weeks. The union has started drawing up individual unfair dismissal claims. Adverts have been placed in the local paper and all members have been mailed with a case form to start the tribunal process. Briefing sessions were held yesterday with Thompsons Solicitors in attendance to explain the legal process. Over 100 UNISON / Unite members attended these briefings.

3. Talks with the Council continue but!
Talks between the Council and UNISON / Unite are continuing.  Phil Wood, the Regional Secretary has been present at the latest meetings.  The Council has still not revised their proposals and the prospect of resolving the dispute remains remote.

4. We need financial help
With the industrial action already taking place, and the action planned, the Branch will have spent £150,000. We have received promises of financial assistance from both the Region and from National level and have this week received an emergency cash transfer from UNISON to help the Branch to continue to function.

We have also received donations fro many branches across the Region and the country. I understand that the National union is to send out an appeal letter to all Branches shortly. Our Branch remains in the frontline of the fight against pay cuts and reductions. Today we have received a message of support and donation from the Shetland Islands UNISON Branch. Please send us further donations if you are able. Our members wish to continue to fight wage cuts, with your help we can ensure that we have the financial resources to continue.

Cheques should be made payable to UNISON Southampton District Branch and sent to UNISON Southampton District Branch, UNISON Office, Civic Centre, Southampton, SO14 7NB.

For updates on the dispute, see our Branch web site at or the Branch Facebook site at – Southampton District UNISON.

Best wishes

Mike Tucker
UNISON National Executive Council Member /
Branch Secretary
UNISON Southampton District Branch

e-mail: branchsecretary[at] or mike.tucker[at]
Blackberry e-mail: m.tucker[at]

For an update on the industrial action go to the Branch web site


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Birmingham members to strike against savage cuts Wed, 22 Jun 2011 15:59:54 +0000 Continue reading ]]> (22/06/11)

UNISON council workers in Birmingham have voted to take industrial action in protest against a new contract proposed by the city, which attacks their pay and conditions.

Birmingham local government branch members voted by a 76% majority for the strike, which will take place on 30 June.

News of the action was greeted with cheers at the union’s conference in Manchester today, during a debate in which delegates voiced their determination to defeat the ConDem coalition.

Graham Horne of Birmingham local government branch told conference that the city council had been led by a ConDem coalition for six years – and that the city’s public services had been “squeezed of funding” long before the government announced its austerity cuts.

Those services will lose £330m over the next three years. “Birmingham is known as the second city,” said Mr Horne, “but it is second to none in terms of cuts.”

Adding insult to injury, the authority has “declared war on staff” with what has become known as the Martini Contract, because it will allow council bosses to change or reduce working hours as and when they feel like it, forcing employees to work “any time, any place, anywhere”.

The contract will also lead to thousands of workers losing pay, and affect such conditions as weekend and shift pay.

Conference condemned the government for “mounting an ideological attack on the public sector disguised as financial necessity” – an attack that was being implemented “with relish” by coalition councils across the country.

Delegates agreed on the need to build an effective anti-cuts coalition with the TUC, other unions, trade union councils, community groups, services users and the public, and to resist attacks on hard-won terms and conditions.

It was also agreed to publicise wherever possible the role of the Liberal Democrats in implementing those cuts.

As Mr Horne told delegates: “The future is not orange. The future is purple and green.”

Conference also emphasised the need to build the union’s density in every workplace, if it is to counter the attacks on public services.

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Civil servants vote for strike over cuts to pensions, jobs and pay Wed, 15 Jun 2011 16:25:27 +0000 Continue reading ]]> 15 June 2011

More than a quarter of a million civil and public servants today (15) joined teachers in voting for a strike over cuts to their pensions, as well as jobs and pay.

In a national ballot 61.1% of PCS’s quarter of a million civil and public service members voted for a strike and 83.6% voted for other forms of industrial action, on a 32.4% turnout.

Meeting this afternoon, PCS’s national executive committee confirmed the union will prepare for a strike on Thursday 30 June and will work with the National Union of Teachers, Association of Teachers and Lecturers and the University and College Union to co-ordinate any action.

Unless the government does an about-turn on its plans to force public sector workers to work longer and pay more for much less pension in retirement, this first joint strike will include 750,000 public servants. And there is also a very real prospect of hundreds of thousands more workers joining the dispute later in the year.

The union says the government’s slash and burn approach to tackling the budget deficit will mean vital public services are axed, hundreds of thousands of public sector workers will be thrown out of work, and those that remain will have their pay and pensions cut.

Ministers have fixed the terms of negotiations over public sector pensions to seriously undermine the possibility of an agreement being reached. They also admit that money cut from pensions will go to the Treasury to help pay off the deficit, not into pension schemes, which the union says amounts to a tax on working in the public sector.

They have accepted Lord Hutton’s proposals – which mean members of civil service pension schemes face a doubling or tripling of their contributions as well as having to work longer for less pension – and have ruled out any negotiations on their decision to use the CPI measure of inflation to uprate pensions instead of RPI.

The government is sticking to its proposals despite the National Audit Office, Lord Hutton himself and most recently the Commons public accounts committee confirming public sector pensions are affordable now and sustainable in future.

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said:

“This result shows that public servants, who provide vital services from the cradle to the grave, will not stand back while everything they have ever worked for is taken from them.

The government admits that money cut from pensions will go straight to the Treasury to help pay off the deficit in what is nothing more than a tax on working in the public sector. The very modest pay and pensions of public servants did not cause the recession, so they should not be blamed or punished for it.

Unless ministers abandon their ideological plans to hollow out the public sector, they will face industrial action on a mass scale on 30 June and beyond.”

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RMT names further strike dates in vicimisations dispute Thu, 09 Jun 2011 17:00:20 +0000 Continue reading ]]> Publication Date: June 9 2011

TUBE UNION RMT today announced strike dates involving all train driver members in the on-going dispute over the victimisation of union activist Arwyn Thomas over his trade union activities and the associated continuing harassment and victimisation of union reps throughout London Underground.

Despite strenuous efforts by RMT, LU have refused to reach an agreement that would reinstate Arwyn Thomas despite his successful appeal for “interim relief” for unfair dismissal at the Employment Tribunal on the grounds of his trade union activities.

As a result, train driver members are instructed not to book on for shifts:

· Between 21.01 hours on Sunday 19th June 2011 and 03.00 hours on Monday 20th June 2011.

RMT has also served notice of further action in light of a continuing failure to agree on reinstatement where drivers will be instructed not to book on for shifts:

· Between 21.01 hours on Monday 27th June 2011 and 11.59 Hours on Tuesday 28th June 2011

· Between 12.00 hours on Wednesday 29th June 2011 and 11.59 hours on Thursday 30th June 2011

· Between 12.00 hours on Friday 1st July 2011 and 21.00 hours on Friday 1st July 2011

Arwyn Thomas, a long-standing RMT activist and driver at Morden was sacked on trumped-up disciplinary charges following unproven allegations made against him by strike breakers. The charges were wholly rejected at his interim relief tribunal in a case that has clear parallels with that of sacked and reinstated driver Eamonn Lynch.

Arwyn has been an RMT/NUR member for over 29 years and has held various positions in the union. As a result of his victory at the interim relief hearing at the Employment Tribunal on the grounds of his victimisation as an RMT activist Arwyn has been waiting at home on full pay for the opportunity to get back to work and do the job that Londoners are paying him to do – driving trains. RMT calculates that the combined cost in legal fees and wasted time and effort keeping Arwyn off work when he should be back in the cab is at least a quarter of a million pounds.

RMT General Secretary Bob Crow said:

RMT has made every possible effort to get Arwyn Thomas back to work and it is the intransigence of LU management, who have dragged their heels and failed to reach agreement over the past month, that has left us with no choice to put this strike action on.

This is a clear cut case of victimisation and RMT calls on London Underground once again to stop the delaying tactics, and the continuing waste of hundreds of thousands of pounds that they have thrown at this case, and get Arwyn Thomas back to work.

The massive vote for action by tube drivers in this dispute shows that they are well aware of the consequences of allowing our activists and safety reps to be picked off while we hear daily reports of breakdowns and failures on the network as a direct result of the very cuts that our members have been fighting.”

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PCS conference: A quarter of a million public servants to ballot for strike Fri, 20 May 2011 09:23:11 +0000 Continue reading ]]> 18 May 2011

More than a quarter of a million civil and public servants will ballot for a strike over cuts to pensions, jobs and pay, following an overwhelming vote at the Public and Commercial Services union annual conference.

Ballot papers will be issued from next week and the ballot will close mid-June, with the first action possible later that month. The union is working closely with education unions who are also balloting over pensions or have already voted and taken strike action, bringing the total to 750,000 union members.

Delegates speaking in the debate talked about how the coalition government’s policies are wreaking havoc on their livelihoods, their families and their communities, and pledged their commitment to campaign against all cuts.

The government’s slash and burn approach to tackling the budget deficit will throw hundreds of thousands of public sector workers out of work, impose a pay freeze on those that remain, axe vital public services, and undermine hard-won rights such as pensions and redundancy terms.

The government has already made it clear it will implement Lord Hutton’s proposals on public sector pensions, meaning civil and public servants will pay higher contributions and work longer for a lower pension.

The union wants: no detrimental changes to pensions or the civil service redundancy scheme; a strengthening of the Cabinet Office-agreed measures to avoid compulsory redundancies; and an end to the pay freeze and a fair pay rise for all.

The conference agreed to: hold a national ballot in defence of jobs, pensions and pay; and continue to work with other trade unions to co-ordinate action for maximum impact.

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said:

“Everything we have ever worked for is under threat – but we know there is an alternative and we are committed to fighting for it and, if necessary, striking for it.

The economic crisis was not caused by our members’ jobs, pensions or pay and it is shameful and wrong that the coalition government is attempting to scapegoat them in its bid to slash and burn the welfare state.”

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PCS executive strike action motion Fri, 13 May 2011 17:13:51 +0000 Continue reading ]]> This is a PCS Executive Committee emergency resolution which will be put to the PCS conference next week

PCS and other public sector trade unions are working together to defend jobs, pensions and pay.If government negotiators won’t back down the unions are preparing to respond with co-ordinated strike action.  PCS’s national executive has agreed to put the following emergency motion to the union’s ruling delegate conference in May:

Conference condemns the policies of the coalition government which are designed to cut hundreds of thousands of public sector jobs, cut services, attack public sector workers’ pensions, and which have imposed a two-year pay freeze.

Conference further condemns the proposed redundancies that have been recently announced in a number of areas and believes they could have been avoided.

Conference notes that the government has already made it clear that it will implement the Hutton proposals meaning members will pay higher contributions and work longer for a lower pension.

Conference believes that it was not the jobs, pensions or pay of public sector workers which caused the economic crisis and rejects the coalition government’s attempts to scapegoat public services.

Conference welcomes the recommendation of the April NEC for a national ballot for discontinuous strike action and for discontinuous action short of a strike. Conference further welcomes the ongoing talks with the education unions for joint action involving hundreds of thousands of public sector workers.

Conference therefore instructs the incoming NEC to:

Proceed with a national ballot in defence of jobs, pensions and pay
• Continue to work with other trade unions to co-ordinate the action for maximum impact.

Conference therefore urges all members and activists to prioritise mobilising for a ‘yes, yes’ vote.

PCS branches will be debating the resolution at meetings before the conference.  All PCS members are urged to attend and join the discussion – your idea could be the one that wins the dispute.

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