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From The Socialist newspaper, 22 March 2017

Workplace news in brief

Library strike

The NSSN supporting the Bromley anti-privatisation struggle, June 2015, photo Rob Williams

The NSSN supporting the Bromley anti-privatisation struggle, June 2015, photo Rob Williams   (Click to enlarge)

The Bromley public has been asked 'to rise up and make their voice heard', otherwise the borough's 14 libraries will be privatised, with expected severe cutbacks in services. The call was made by Unite the Union, whose library members will be striking for a week from 1-8 April. The union is also organising a petition to collect the more than 500 signatures needed to force the council to debate the issue.

Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: "The council says that it will be making a decision on the library service's future sometime in May. Unite's firm view is that libraries are for the benefit of the public and should not be considered as a ripe source of profit for the private sector."

Con artists

US food firm Subway's UK and Ireland subsidiary has advertised on a government website for 'apprentices', to be paid 3.40 an hour. The ad offered 35 hours a week, in exchange for the opportunity to become a sandwich 'artist'.

The National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) and partners Unite Community and the Hungry For Justice campaign, were quick to apply pressure to Subway on social media. We promised to protest at the offending Gateshead store which advertised the roles. On 19 March, less than 48 hours after our announcement, tweets from @SubwayUKIreland stated: ''Hi, the store owner was unaware of the advert which was posted by a recruitment agency. We are working to have this advert removed immediately.''

We demand dignity, full rights, real contracts, and a real living wage of 10 an hour for all workers. For more information and to affiliate to NSSN visit shopstewards.net, and follow us on Twitter @NSSN_AntiCuts and @NSSN_NE

William Jarrett, North East NSSN

POA victory

The POA union of prison officers and allied workers has won at an employment tribunal on behalf of three members, two for unfair dismissal and a third for trade union discrimination.

The POA took strike action despite a government ban on 13 November 2015, when the workers lost their appeals against dismissal. The tribunal remedy hearing awarded them in excess of 40,000 each. Steve Gillan, POA general secretary, said: "This was totally avoidable and I am glad our three members got justice and have cleared their names."

Deliveroo demo

Deliveroo workers and supporters preparing to set off on their protest ride around Leeds photo Iain Dalton

Deliveroo workers and supporters preparing to set off on their protest ride around Leeds photo Iain Dalton   (Click to enlarge)

The #Roosistence came to Leeds on 10 March as around 100 people, Deliveroo workers and their supporters, held a cycle protest around Leeds city centre demanding the reinstatement of the 'Leeds 7'.

These seven Deliveroo workers had been part of a WhatsApp group of riders discussing their terms and conditions, including a proposed change from hourly pay to payment per drop. When management gained access to this group in late January they dismissed two workers and five riders were left without fixed hours.

Since then, around 30 workers have unionised with the IWW union locally.

At the protest it was announced that the pressure so far had finally forced Deliveroo to act, sacking the local manager responsible for the dismissals. However, the workers have still not been reinstated.

The trade union movement in Leeds must rally in defence of the Deliveroo workers and support the campaign for reinstatement and union recognition. Please support the hardship fund.

Iain Dalton, Leeds Socialist Party

NUT Forest Hill School strike

photo Rob Williams

photo Rob Williams   (Click to enlarge)

"No ifs, no buts, no Forest Hill cuts!" National Union of Teachers (NUT) members at Forest Hill School, Lewisham on 21 March taking their first day of strike action against compulsory redundancies and the impact on workload resulting from huge cuts to the school. Please send messages of solidarity to the rep Joe Cowley at josephcowley@hotmail.com

NUT members at the school are set to take a further two days of action on 29 and 30 March.

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The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
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In The Socialist 22 March 2017:


What we think

Tory splits brought to the surface - Corbyn must go on the attack


Socialist Party news and analysis

Tories scrap housing benefit for under-21s

Fight Tory attacks on women and children

Socialists demand reply to Livingstone's smear of Militant

Them & Us


International socialist news and analysis

Northern Ireland: divisive election a warning

Jobstown Not Guilty: defend the right to protest

Netherlands: Heavy defeat for austerity government

Yemen: families left to starve by multinationals


Workplace news and analysis

Merseyrail guard found not guilty of "endangering safety"

End the seven-year public sector pay cap!

Aslef offer: unity needed with the RMT

Battle steps up in Unite general secretary election

Derby TAs' strike suspended after new offer

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

March against racism: Refugee Rights has lively bloc

We'll fight to save our NHS!

Biggest ever protest by Orgreave campaigners

Join the march against NHS cuts and privatisation in Cumbria

Battle for Wallsend walk-in NHS service

East London demonstration against A&E closure

Salford: International Women's Day meeting


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

"After seeing the branch's effect in the community, I decided to join"

'I'm writing this to tell you about the plight of disabled people'

Precise, visceral account of working class heroism

The Socialist inbox


 

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