Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/716/14454
Workplace news in brief
Hundreds of pension staff were forced out of the public sector on 1 May. The government agency that administers pensions of 1.5 million working and retired civil servants became the first 'mutual' in the civil service. The 500 'My Civil Service Pension' staff had this move thrust upon them without consultation. PCS members have been taking industrial action against the transfer.
Following eight days of Acas talks, Unite is recommending that tanker drivers reject the latest proposals. 2,000 drivers are being balloted across seven oil distribution firms and the consultative ballot closes on 11 May. Unite is reballoting the 530 drivers working for Hoyer after the original ballot was challenged.
Unite says the employers have given some concessions on health and safety and training but issues around standards, security, pensions and sub-contracting still have not been resolved.
Drivers working for East Midlands Trains are engaged in a series of one-day strikes throughout May. The 450 Aslef members are striking because the company wants to reduce pensions contributions from July, saving them £2.1 million. The company says this will not affect pensions benefits but the union says these calculations are unreliable, particularly since the company may not even be running the franchise in a couple of years.
Staff at Sunderland College are being balloted for strike action over £10,000 pay cuts. UCU members are angry because the college wants to cut the salaries of 150 lecturers and downgrade 70% of its workforce. Lecturers would be paid £8,000 a year less than the UK average for full-time lecturers. The ballot closes on 18 May.
Important NUT meeting
After the decision of the NUT national executive not to call action in June (see our editorial) an important meeting of NUT branches (Associations) has been called.
- Local Associations for National Action - Organise for a confirmed calendar of action. Saturday 16 June 11am - 3.30pm, Quaker Meeting House, 22 School Lane, Liverpool L13
For more information: http://electmartin1.blogspot.com/
The transport union RMT is balloting cleaners employed by ISS and Initial for strike action and action short of a strike. The workers on London Underground are fighting for a pay increase, an Olympic bonus in line with other tube staff, a sick pay scheme, free travel passes and improvements to their pension scheme.
The Tubelines staff working on maintenance and other projects recently went on a 72-hour strike to gain parity with other tube workers over travel concessions and pensions.
The RMT is engaged in a battle to claw back the cuts to wages, services and conditions which damaging attempts to privatise the tube have brought about.
In The Socialist 2 May 2012:
Fighting the government attacks
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party feature
Socialist Party workplace news
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition feature
Socialist Party campaigns
International socialist news and analysis
Environment and socialism