Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/815/18803
Workplace news in brief
EDF energy strike
A third day of strike action by Unite members working at EDF in London, the South East, South West and Eastern region took place on 16 June.
This is the first strike campaign at EDF since the early 1990s. The dispute is about the company's failure to abide by a 2011 pay agreement and its below-inflation offer for 2013. But worker after worker at EDF has made clear that this is also about making a stand against an appalling employer.
Two days of strike action persuaded EDF to begin talks at ACAS, but these broke down before 16 June after the employer played daft games during negotiations. Unite offered to continue talks - but senior managers refused, because they said they had a planned trip to Paris!
A wide ranging work to rule began on 17 June. The campaign will be lobbying EDF HQ buildings and the French Embassy over the coming weeks.
Around 1,400 car manufacturing workers, who lost their jobs when employer Visteon went into administration in 2009, have won back £28 million in pension compensation.
Workers occupied factories in Basildon, Belfast and Enfield when the plants were closed five years ago. Since then the Visteon Pensioners Group and their Unite union have campaigned through protests and legal action to get back their pension contributions.
Socialist Party member and NSSN chair Rob Williams, who is a Visteon pensioner and former convenor at the Visteon Swansea plant that was sold to Linamar in 2008, said: "This doesn't cover what we lost or deserve but is at least some compensation and a reward for a struggle by pensioners and our union Unite that has lasted over five years... starting the day the sacked workers occupied their plants."
Transport for London
Once again members of RMT, TSSA and Unite working for Transport for London (TfL) took strike action on Friday 13 June in defence of pay and pensions.
TfL management plan to freeze our pensionable pay, with only the possibility of highly subjective one-off reward for performance payments in future.
The strike hit head office buildings, contact centres, lost property offices and closed Liverpool Street and Piccadilly Circus travel information centres.
Continued management intransigence can but lead to an escalation of this dispute, a test-case for similar attacks on London Underground pay and pensions.
A TfL worker
Look Ahead pay cuts
Look Ahead care workers protested on the steps of Hackney Town Hall on 12 June over threatened pay cuts of 14% which follow recently imposed pay cuts of 15%.
The Unite members now plan to ballot for strike action.
Already workers have been forced to move home because of the cuts. Now they are saying 'enough is enough'.
Another protest is planned for 19 June at 3pm. Hackney council funds the Look Ahead care service.
In The Socialist 18 June 2014:
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