Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 26 August 2009

Construction workers defending jobs and conditions

Lindsey Oil Refinery workers strike, photo Sean Figg

Lindsey Oil Refinery construction workers strike, photo Sean Figg   (Click to enlarge)

Construction workers have been protesting for two weeks outside the Uskmouth power station site near Newport. This is because the contractor Siemens is refusing to give many unemployed local construction workers work on the site, preferring instead to bus workers in from abroad to breach union (NAECI) agreements.

Mike John, Newport Socialist Party

The company's claim that 80% of employees on the site are British and Irish has been scoffed at by the workers. They know that over half the skilled trades jobs have been filled with workers from abroad to undermine union organisation.

The protests were organised at a meeting of construction workers from all over the country in Newport in mid August to discuss the situation at Uskmouth.

The mood was one of anger that Siemens was not adhering to the Blue Book agreement that the unions had fought for over many years and a major concern was health and safety at the plant.

Local New Labour MP Jessica Morden was at the meeting. I asked her if she would join the call for an end to the European directive on the free movement of labour, a law designed so that companies like Siemens could import cheap labour. She refused, without explaining why. There also seems to be a lack of leadership coming from the top of the union. Like at the Lindsey oil refinery it is left up to the rank and file to fight this battle alone.

Around 70 unemployed construction workers attended the first protest on 17 August, and Socialist Party members from Cardiff and Newport went down to give practical support.

The mood was one of workers' solidarity, as one worker said: "We are not against Polish workers, we are against those above them". A steward reported that when he was working in Plymouth, Polish workers went on strike with British workers and joined the union because they found out that the company was exploiting them. The union then won them improved pay and conditions.

A solidarity appeal in Polish, Hungarian and German has been produced by Socialist Party members for workers to join the union and support the campaign of British and Irish construction workers for jobs on the site.

Subsequent protests have been smaller but the anger has not dissipated. Workers are gearing up for a big protest on 7 September, when workers from all over the country will be rallying at Uskmouth.

This day of protest must be built for to show Siemens and all the other construction contractors that this attack on union organisation will be resisted and workers will force them to adhere to the NAECI agreements.

Socialist Party members are building for solidarity from other local union branches and trades councils for the 7 September protest.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.

In The Socialist 26 August 2009:

Jobs and education not dole and debt

War and occupation

Afghanistan: Withdraw foreign troops

Socialist Party NHS campaign

No to health privatisation and 'the market'

Private Finance Initiative still threatens NHS future

Socialist Party campaign news

Vestas workers fight on

Ireland - workers campaign against Lisbon Treaty

Recession threat grows

Time to Fight Back: demonstrate at TUC conference

Socialist Party workplace news

Construction workers defending jobs and conditions

Postal strike reports

Fiddlers Ferry protest continues

South Yorks firefighters plan industrial action

Youth fight for jobs

No to Future Jobs Fraud scheme

Leaving education: comment

Youth Fight for Jobs action

Socialist Students and Youth Fight for Jobs campaign material

Socialist Party Marxist analysis

World recession, revolution and counter-revolution in Latin America

Socialist Party news and analysis

March shows growing opposition to far right BNP

Daventry: socialist candidate in council by-election

Passengers want publicly owned buses

Unison witchhunt

Unison witch-hunt/employment tribunal: The truth is coming out

Housing crisis

How safe are our houses?

Global Warming

Poorest suffer globally from climate change


Home   |   The Socialist 26 August 2009   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:

Construction workers:

triangleFerrybridge workers protest against 'race to bottom'

triangleLetter from blacklisted construction workers

triangleBlacklisting victory donation dedicated to workers' struggle

triangleConstruction workers stop work to protest at the undermining of jobs and pay


triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleBoeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs

triangleMonarch abdicates responsibility to workers

triangleCapitalism and human progress


triangleRemove cladding without delay says head of Housing Fed

triangleOne in three borrow for rent, Corbyn pledges housing revolution

triangle200,000 empty homes - 250,000 homeless - end property speculation


triangleBron Afon workers strike against 3,000 pay cut

triangleUncovering the class struggle behind the Rebecca Riots


triangleStop the jobs slaughter at Bombardier, Derby

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns



Justice for Tube cleaners demo



Salford Unison condemns pay cuts


Royal Mail

CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike



Carlisle NHS campaigners hand in petition to MP



Don't wreck our rec! Campaigning to save green space in Standish



No more fire deaths - ensure safety now!



Cardiff Socialist Students confront 'Parasite' Jacob Rees-Mogg


John McDonnell

Manchester rally discussed unionisation and nationalisation



Join the Orgreave Halloween rally



Workplace news in brief


Democratic rights

Who's watching who?: The fight for justice, trade union and democratic rights


Northern Ireland

Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs



Too much to cross the Mersey


Royal Mail

Set for national strike action



Supporting the general strike in Catalonia

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party out the Tories

triangle11 Oct CWU fights court attempt to stop national strike

triangle11 Oct The fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against...

triangle11 Oct Catalonia: Workers can finish what Puigdemont won't

triangle6 Oct Boeing bust-up threatens thousands of skilled jobs

triangle4 Oct The nasty party turns on itself... but the Tories must be driven out

More ...

triangle17 Oct London: TUC lobby & rally; and London march

triangle18 Oct Warrington & St Helens Socialist Party: 1917-2017; the October Russian Revolution

triangle18 Oct Hackney Socialist Party: 100 years ago - the Bolshevik-led revolution

triangle18 Oct Tower Hamlets Socialist Party: Capitalism in Crisis - is Corbyn the answer?

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube



October 2017

September 2017

August 2017

July 2017

June 2017

May 2017

April 2017

March 2017

February 2017

January 2017





















Platform setting: = No platform choice