Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page:

From The Socialist newspaper, 7 October 2009

Fighting against outsourcing, defending working conditions at British Telecom

Twice in the past five months, BT Communication Workers Union (CWU) members have rejected proposals by the company to introduce new working arrangements that undermine previously negotiated attendance arrangements. The proposals would have led to the majority of members having to work Saturdays for the first time, an introduction of late working, and to be available to work from any location in Britain.

Gary Jones, CWU national executive council, personal capacity

Whilst members are happy to embrace change, the proposals were clearly a move too far. The CWU executive however supported the changes and recommended a 'yes' vote.

Socialist Party and broad left CWU members campaigned against these proposals and the membership rejected the executive's recommendation and voted 'no'.

BT chose to ignore the outcome of the ballot and have attempted to sideline the union by approaching the workforce directly. This is a provocative move that shows their complete contempt for the union and its members' views.

And to put further pressure on workers to make a pledge to change their attendance patterns, BT has announced it is making final preparations to TUPE [transfer] out of the company a large section of workers.

The real irony of the situation is that management could have achieved changes to attendance patterns voluntarily by proposing an agreement along those lines to the union during the negotiations.

Not good enough for our members

If the CWU leadership were in touch with the membership it would have said: "Sorry BT, your final proposals are not good enough for our members, and we will show you that by recommending that our members vote against your proposed attendance pattern changes in a CWU ballot".

The rally call would have been set; we would have been in a stronger position at that stage to achieve a massive 'no' vote in our ballot, with the whole membership united against the current attendance pattern proposals and the real threat of TUPE to BT jobs.

There is a crucial need now to replace the majority of the current executive with people willing to listen to members and give them a lead in defending their jobs.

The unity of the membership must now come first, by the union acting on its current policies.

Any attempt by BT to impose unagreed attendance pattern changes, break-up BT by TUPE/outsourcing, or declare compulsory redundancies must be met with a ballot for industrial action.

We must demand that the telecommunications industry is placed into public ownership to stop this false competition of the marketplace that has only a detrimental effect on workers' terms and conditions of employment.

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

In The Socialist 7 October 2009:

Needed a party for workers, not bosses

War and occupation

Afghanistan stop the war

Afghanistan - Bring the troops home now

Youth fight for jobs

Youth Fight for Jobs

University accommodation scandal: Students must defend rights

University freshers fairs: Students seek out socialism

Socialist Party news and analysis

Wirral anti-cuts victory: 'If you fight, you can win'

Young parents need support, not attacks

Fight for a living wage

Not to Darling's pay freeze

Fast news

Campaign forces health Trust to save Crowlin House

Workplace news and analysis

An autumn of discontent in South Yorkshire

Leeds council calls for talks with unions

Fighting against outsourcing, defending working conditions at British Telecom

NUT vice president: Elect Martin Powell-Davies

Cambridge post workers strike

North Wales shop stewards network

Socialist Party feature

Social care in crisis

International socialist news and analysis

Ireland: Lisbon Treaty vote is not an endorsement for hated government

Portugal: Voters turn to the left

Foreign aid - chaining the world to capitalism

Fish Tank directed by Andrea Arnold

I speak Fula by Bassekou Kouyate and Ngoni Ba


Home   |   The Socialist 7 October 2009   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate  

Related links:


triangleBosses' pensions robbery

triangleBT attack on pension benefits

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleNHS SOS round-up

triangleThe Socialist inbox


triangleRoyal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangleUnite local government sector plans strike ballot

triangleCWU fights court attempt to stop national strike

triangleSet for national strike action


triangleNationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems

triangleBalloting members on the pay cap

triangleWorkplace news in brief


triangleCan you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?

triangleObesity epidemic: end food market anarchy


triangleNHS meltdown - fight the Tory cuts

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns


North West

Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay


Democratic rights

Conference on state spies: who's watching who?



Striking back against sackers' charter at Leeds Uni


Royal Mail

Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers



Balloting members on the pay cap



'Dazzling' Bad Art show points to socialist future



Sheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison


South West Wales

Hundreds turn out for rally aimed at removing west Wales Tory MP



Uprising to save the NHS!



Can you donate to the Socialism 2017 appeal?


East London

No cuts - hands off King George A&E!


North London

North London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses



Nationalise to save jobs at BAE Systems



Schools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now



Socialist Students 'welcome' Hillary Clinton to Swansea

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...

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

triangle19 Oct Arriva North West bus drivers strike over pay

triangle18 Oct Russia, October 1917: When workers took power

triangle18 Oct Tories torn - bin them now

triangle18 Oct Royal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangle18 Oct Balloting members on the pay cap

triangle13 Oct The end of the Tories?

triangle11 Oct Nasty party out the Tories

More ...

triangle23 Oct Chesterfield Socialist Party: The continuing struggle for abortion rights

triangle24 Oct Liverpool Socialist Party: The October Russian Revolution 100 years ago to the day

triangle25 Oct Salford Socialist Party: The October 1917 Russian revolution

triangle25 Oct Swansea Socialist Party: Mother Jones - A US labour pioneer

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