Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/945/25291
From The Socialist newspaper, 19 April 2017
Workers sailing to victory on Woolwich ferry
Woolwich ferry photo BL2002/CC (Click to enlarge)
A Unite member
Unite and GMB trade union members employed by Briggs Marine on the Woolwich Ferry have scored another win in their battle to improve conditions and fight bullying and harassment.
Workers have taken two days of strike action so far to protest against appalling health and safety failures, sexual harassment and union victimisation.
The strike action had already secured the suspension of one manager, several investigations and also the installation of a temporary management structure to oversee the local management team after workers made clear that they no longer had trust and confidence in local managers.
Further strike action was planned on 18 April 2017 but prior to the action commencing, the employer announced that the senior manager on site is 'moving on' and that there will be a new wider management team with staff able to put themselves forward.
The union will be demanding that these positions should be filled via an election of the workforce. While this is not strictly workers' control, it is certainly an example of what can be achieved right now!
The next planned action has therefore been suspended but only on the basis that discussion continues on a list of other grievances. As we go to press, the action for 21 April is still on.
These workers are a shining example. A large majority male workforce has been willing to stand shoulder to shoulder with a woman union member who faced the most disgusting sexual harassment, while at the same time building a campaign that poses the question of who controls the workplace.
The fact that the action has led to the removal of the most senior manager means that a victory has already been won - now the campaign will build on this to maximise that victory.
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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.
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In The Socialist 19 April 2017:
What we think
Defeat the millionaires' Tory government
Socialist Party news and analysis
900 carers quit a day - nationalise social care now
Fight the Sun's bigoted lies
Benefits workers oppose 'rape clause' and two-child limit
Joint struggle can stop tuition fee interest hike
Them & Us
Jobstown Not Guilty
Protest is not a crime: back Jobstown Not Guilty
Save our NHS
What kind of movement is needed to save our NHS?
International socialist news and analysis
Trump escalates geopolitical tensions on Korean peninsula
Turkey: constitutional referendum result a pyrrhic victory for Erdogan
French presidential election: Mélenchon campaign gains momentum
Relaunch of socialistworld.net
Workplace news and analysis
CWU conference: fight Royal Mail pension attack
Workers sailing to victory on Woolwich ferry
PCS ballot papers out: vote Democracy Alliance
Weapons workers continue pension strike
Mood for a fightback at education conferences
Picturehouse cinema strike spreads
National Shop Stewards Network conference 2017
Socialist readers' comments and reviews
Mass movements, not 'fringe cultures', can win feminist change
Buses and buggies: a driver speaks
The Socialist inbox
Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition
TUSC backs RMT Save Our Guards campaign, while local Labour Party blocks debate
Energetic start to TUSC local election campaigning
Doncaster mayoral election: Socialist Steve campaign diary
TUSC council candidate vows never to go to the 'dark side'!
The Socialist 19 April 2017 |
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