Crossrail workers' protest, 2.12.16, photo by Rob Williams

Crossrail workers’ protest, 2.12.16, photo by Rob Williams   (Click to enlarge: opens in new window)

Rob Williams, NSSN national chair

In response to a campaign by Unite to demand a second tier productivity bonus for electricians on Crossrail in London, which included an unofficial walkout on 25 November, notorious blacklisters Laing O’Rourke/Crown House has issued the Unite rep on the site a transfer to another job off the project.

From 5 December, Terry Wilson was set to be off Crossrail, in a blatant attempt to intimidate workers, just as Unite starts a consultative ballot on the bonus payment and other demands.

As a result of this victimisation, on 30 November and 1 December electricians ‘cabined up’ and refused to start work. Then on 2 December, they picketed the site. Following this, workers were issued with a letter from Laing O’Rourke, ‘encouraging’ them back to work by threatening disciplinary action!

Sent home

But the electricians were back outside the site straight away, fighting to get Terry back. We overheard workers who had been meant to install the lifts saying they were being sent home because the electricians weren’t working!

It is crucial that this dispute is won. And it can be – not just for the Tottenham Court Road site but the whole campaign across Crossrail. A victory here would really build confidence that they could force Crossrail management to concede the bonus.

  • Hardship fund for Tottenham Court Road electricians out in support of victimised shop steward Terry Wilson: Account name – Unite London Construction LE/0555 Branch, account number – 20276649, sort code – 60830, Unity trust bank
  • Tweet support to London Construction Branch LE/0555 @unite0555