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From The Socialist newspaper, 25 August 2005

Rolls Royce workers vote for strike

A clear majority of workers have voted to defend their Amicus convenor Jerry Hicks who was sacked by Rolls-Royce, Bristol, for defending two of his members.

Graeme Jones, Amicus member north Bristol

The vote - 55 to 33 - is in favour of industrial action due to start on 23 August. This is continuous action and will be followed by a ballot of the entire site and perhaps at all Rolls-Royce UK sites.

Since his sacking last month, when there were spontaneous walkouts from the engine test areas where Jerry Hicks works, an industrial tribunal has recommended that he get his job back. It found that he was dismissed "probably on trade union grounds". The management have, so far, offered him a 50,000 pay-off which has been flatly refused by Mr Hicks. "I'm not for sale, and this union is not for sale. I will accept reinstatement and I'm happy to return to work with no ill feeling," he said.

Hundreds of Rolls-Royce workers and trade unionists attended a rally in Bristol last week in support of Mr Hicks. The speakers, who included Tony Benn and Bob Crow (general secretary of the RMT union), repeatedly illustrated the point that this issue is about defending trade union rights.


Socialist Party national trade union meeting

Saturday 3 September,

11am-4pm, Central London


Agenda:

Speaker: Peter Taaffe

Speaker: Bill Mullins

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