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From The Socialist newspaper, 28 May 2008

Tube cleaners ballot for action

Cleaners working for private contractors on London Underground are balloting for strike action over pay and conditions. These RMT members are currently on scandalously low rates of around 5.50 an hour.

They are balloting over action to fight for the London 'living wage' of 7.20 an hour, 28 days holiday a year, sick pay and decent pensions and travel facilities.

RMT general secretary Bob Crow said: "It is nonsense that cleaning contractors who make millions cannot afford to pay a living wage to the people who do some of the dirtiest and most difficult jobs on the Tube, and the time has come to start bringing cleaning back in-house".

The ballot of over 700 workers closes on 19 June.


Insult to postal workers

Royal Mail have just published their financial results, revealing a pay, pensions and bonuses package worth 3 million for chief executive Adam Crozier. This is remarkable, given that Royal Mail keep claiming they are in financial crisis and that postal workers are over-paid.

It seems like an iron rule - the worse the service gets, the more the chief executive gets paid - and the workers get the blame.


Paying the hand that bites you

Nearly all the 3.1 million raised by the Labour Party in the first quarter of this year has come from the trade unions, the Electoral Commission has revealed. The five highest donations, totalling 1.9 million, came from Unite, Usdaw and the GMB. The Tories and Liberals can still rely on big donations from rich individuals but these have been drying up for Labour, which is now 17.8 million in debt.

Rather than bailing out the Labour Party by using the hard-earned cash of their often low-paid members, it is time the trade unions began to discuss how to build a party that really represents workers.

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In The Socialist 28 May 2008:

Build A New Workers' Party

Crewe and Nantwich 'no-win' by-election: Why New Labour lost

I told my union: "We need a new workers' party"

Westminster parties are remote from life

Campaign for a new workers' party: conference 2008

MPs' expensive expenses


Socialist Party campaigns

Tax the rich not the poor!

Exeter bomb explosion: Workers' unity needed against terrorism, war and deprivation

Johnson's Prince of Darkness

Them & Us

Greenwich - save our centres


Socialist Party women

Women welcome abortion rights victory: Now fight to extend rights


Youth and crime

Home secretary: "Tough on crime"...but not the causes

'Youth justice': repressive measures do not work


Socialist Party feature

'Counter-terrorism' legislation threatens our democratic rights


International socialist analysis

South Africa: Attacks on refugees and migrants reveal capitalism's barbaric underbelly


Socialist Party review

The Wire - Reviewed by Michael Wrack


Socialist Party workplace news

PCS conference: More battles ahead on pay and jobs

Usdaw general secretary election: Members want democratic debate

Industrial news in brief


 

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Bob Crow:

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London underground:

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