Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/992/27256

From The Socialist newspaper, 25 April 2018

Usdaw conference 2018

Retail union backs zero-hour ban, leaders oppose rank-and-file coordination

Dozens of delegates walked out to demand proper democratic procedures, photo by Scott Jones

Dozens of delegates walked out to demand proper democratic procedures, photo by Scott Jones   (Click to enlarge)

Ryan Aldred, Usdaw conference delegate (personal capacity)

The left is making steps forward while the right-wing bureaucracy continues trying to hold back struggle at Usdaw's annual delegate meeting (ADM). The 22-25 April national conference of the retail and distribution union is still underway at the time of writing.

The union leadership opposed affiliation to the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) - a rank-and-file body established by transport union RMT and supported by nine national unions.

Every contribution to the debate supported the motion. The leadership admitted its opposition was because Socialist Party members play a leading role in the NSSN.

The vote was clearly 50/50 on a show of hands. But outgoing president Jeff Broome refused a card vote - despite numerous calls and general uproar. About 50 delegates walked out to complain about blatant breaking of the rules.

The protests made to standing orders forced a re-run of the vote. The final result was declared as 42% for, 58% against - a close defeat at the hands of a hostile and cavalier leadership, and clearly justifying the card vote.

The ADM did pass an emergency motion calling on the union's executive council to support workers at Shop Direct. Three distribution sites in Greater Manchester face relocation to an automated site - which could result in the loss of over 2,000 jobs.

The members are preparing for industrial action and were emboldened by the level of support. Socialist Party members called for no relocation, and a shorter working week with no loss of pay.

Usdaw has committed to a campaign to ban zero-hour contracts in favour of minimum 16-hour contracts, except for those who specifically request less. Socialist Party members pressed the importance of not just committing in words but seriously preparing a campaign.

I spoke in support of reintroducing the original, socialist 'Clause IV' into Labour's constitution, which the leadership opposed and defeated. But the ADM did pass a maximum income policy, on a card vote, after the leadership opposed it.

A number of important motions - including supporting the Refugee Rights Campaign - have yet to be decided at the time of writing.

It's apparent Socialist Party member Amy Murphy's election as next Usdaw president has emboldened the left in the union. Iain Dalton of the Socialist Party has also been elected chair of Usdaw's Broad Left, which continues to grow.

At the time of writing, we have sold over 70 copies of the Socialist. Full report to follow - but it's clear support for socialist ideas is rising in Britain's fifth-largest union.

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


In The Socialist 25 April 2018:


Local elections 2018

Southampton: the cuts or no cuts election

Sheffield and South Yorkshire: no to closures - defend our NHS


What we think

Tories out!


Socialist Party news and analysis

Windrush scandal: Tories and Blairites must go


Labour and the unions

RMT Labour Party affiliation debate - where do socialists stand?


Workplace news and analysis

McDonald's strikers: "We demand a living wage and decent conditions"

Bromley library workers win strike campaign

School strike forces head to say privatisation will stop

Retail union backs zero-hour ban, leaders oppose rank-and-file coordination

Journalists' union leaders defeat call for political fund, but potential for left grows


Socialist history

France 1968: when workers were on the brink of taking power


International Workers' Day

May Day greetings 2018


 

Home   |   The Socialist 25 April 2018   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Usdaw:

triangleEast London Socialist Party: 'Made in Dagenham' Ford women workers' pay strike 50 years on

triangleSolid strike at Tesco Dagenham distribution centre forces pay talks

triangleThousands on TUC demo

triangleStrike at Tesco Dagenham for better pay

triangleBelgium Lidl strike victory

Retail:

triangleUsdaw conference 2018

triangleReject the mega-supermarket merger: nationalise to save jobs

triangleRetail crunch: even giants not immune as 21,000 jobs disappear

triangleSainsbury's raise really a cut: fight for 10 with no strings!

NSSN:

triangleUse TUC march as launch pad for action on pay

triangleNSSN conference moves

triangleNSSN pre-TUC rally

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

25/5/18

Waltham Forest

Action demanded from new council

23/5/18

Housing

40 attend Socialist Party housing campaign launch in Windsor

23/5/18

Pride

Sheffield Pride organisers defeated in attempt to ban politics

23/5/18

Leicester

Leicester socialists fight poverty-paying sweatshops

23/5/18

The Socialist

Let's sell 1,000 extra copies of issue 1000!

23/5/18

Students

Student leaders claim one million on the streets against Brexit - fight for a workers' exit

23/5/18

Leeds

College staff caught between the devil and the deep blue sea

23/5/18

Harrogate

Services disappearing from Harrogate

23/5/18

Tesco

Solid strike at Tesco Dagenham distribution centre forces pay talks

23/5/18

PCS

PCS conference votes for strike action

23/5/18

Academies

Victory: how school strike beat 'academy' privatisers

23/5/18

Strike

First ever strike at TGI Fridays

23/5/18

Trump

Stop Trump! Build for 13 July student walkouts

16/5/18

TUC

Thousands on TUC demo

16/5/18

Huddersfield

'When we fight, we can win' - campaign halts hospital closure

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


May 2018

April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999