Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/1029/28688

From The Socialist newspaper, 13 February 2019

Victory to Birmingham bin workers

Deselect the Blairites!

Birmingham bin strikers, photo Birmingham Socialist Party

Birmingham bin strikers, photo Birmingham Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

Kristian Sucilla O'Sullivan, Birmingham Central Socialist Party

Birmingham City Council, also known as the 'Blairite City Council' by many local trade union activists, has been caught red-handed using blacklisting.

The council has targeted refuse and collection workers from Unite the Union who took industrial action last year to save safety-critical 'grade three' roles from being cut.

Unite has discovered that the council made secret 'sweetheart payments' - as described by Unite assistant general secretary Howard Beckett - as a 'reward' to refuse workers who did not participate in last year's strike. The recipients were a minority section of staff, who received payments of 4,000 plus each!

This is a clear act of discrimination, sanctioning and, most disgustingly, a tactic of divide and rule.

It is an action clearly designed to weaken the collective force of the union taken by - let's not forget - a Labour council.

This is a Labour council that attempted to obtain a court injunction using Tory anti-union legislation. A Labour council which attempted to use a strikebreaking 'alternative workforce' against union members!

Despite all this, Unite members still offered an olive branch to this anti-worker council. The union stated that, if the council simply made payments of parity so that all bin workers were paid equally, all parties involved could move on and attempt to rebuild the decimated trust between this Labour council and the labour movement.

But Birmingham council was not in any mood to admit to its wrongdoings and make amends. Instead, it tried to shift the blame onto the bin workers, punishing staff by refusing holiday leave.

The council also tried to poison public opinion - attempting to turn the bin workers' own communities against them by utilising contacts in the local media to run hostile, anti-union headlines.

With the council refusing to cooperate with Unite's final peace deal of parity payments, bin workers have been forced to escalate their 'work to rule' action to a full-blown strike starting on 19 February.

Wider struggle

The ordinary working-class and young people of Birmingham are behind the bin workers. We understand this is part of a wider fight to save our public services, as the already striking Birmingham home care workers know all too well.

This is a fight not just for workplace justice but against Tory austerity. It is a fight against all those councillors that do the Tories' dirty work - implementing cuts at local level - no matter the colour of their rosettes.

If these Labour councillors are not prepared to stand up for the working class then they should stand down.

If they won't go willingly, they should face deselection as Labour candidates. They should be replaced with real working-class fighters, drawn from across the trade union and socialist movement - fighters prepared to take a stand and support a no-cuts budget, ending all attacks on workers' rights.

Ultimately, if the same pro-cuts councillors are not removed and instead seek re-election, they should face an anti-cuts challenge at the ballot box.

Workers across Birmingham need councillors who are working-class fighters, prepared to take the battle to one of the weakest Tory governments of all time.

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


In The Socialist 13 February 2019:


What we think

Corbyn must launch struggle to kick out Blairites and fight for socialist policies


Socialist Party news and analysis

Universal Credit out - Tories out!

Mass pressure wins light sentence for 'Stansted 15'

To end climate change we need to fight for socialist change!

Marx memorial attack shows socialist ideas are on the rise

Them & us


International socialist news and analysis

France: striking workers confront Macron as historic gilets jaunes movement approaches "Act XIV"


Socialist Party feature

Ten years since Lindsey strike: when militant action stopped the 'race to the bottom'


Workplace news and analysis

Victory to Birmingham bin workers

Heroic RMT guards beat back Northern rail in fight against dangerous driver-only operation

Fight for a socialist-led PCS - fight to win the national pay campaign

Glasgow: nationalise the threatened 'Caley' railway depot

Leicester college workers refuse to accept cut in terms and conditions

Enfield: striking against academisation - fighting for a no-cuts budget

Workplace and union news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Southampton: Labour plans 15m cuts - vote Socialist in Coxford by-election

Newham: women's refuge funds halved - Labour must use the 500m reserves

Arrest Brigadier Fernando - defend the right to protest

Why I joined: "why is their life so different from mine?"

New pamphlet: 1919 - Red Flag over the Clyde

Celebrating Robert Burns 1759-1796

'Shac' campaign fights for housing

300 turn out for Corbyn in Nottingham marginal

Liverpool: 200 march to commemorate Robert Tressell

'Spot' conference opposes authoritarianism in Turkey


Opinion

'Green Book' film: a timely reminder of racism in the USA

'Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor': comedy and tragedy judiciously mixed

The Socialist inbox


 

Home   |   The Socialist 13 February 2019   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Birmingham:

triangleVictory for Birmingham bin workers

triangleBreaking news: Birmingham bin workers' strike suspended pending new deal

triangleWorkplace news in brief

triangleLobby of the Swansea City Council's budget setting meeting on 28th February, photo by Swansea SP

triangleBirmingham Socialist Party: Celebrating International Women's Day

Bin workers:

triangleBin strike against 'blacklisting'

triangleBirmingham: hostile Labour council attacks striking workers

triangleBlairite Birmingham steps up union-busting and two workforces plan strikes

triangleKirklees bin workers' strike forces management back

Blairites:

triangleMay's government facing endgame

triangleDerby Socialist Party: Kick out the Blairites

triangleNo retreats: Corbyn must stand firm against Blairites

Council:

triangleSocialist Party's Sue Atkins wins big support for anti-cuts, socialist policies

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

3/4/19

Hackney

Hackney & Islington Socialist Party: The Winter of Discontent

27/3/19

Hackney

Hackney & Islington Socialist Party: Reform or Revolution

20/3/19

EU

Trade unionists debate the EU

20/3/19

Pay

End austerity. Fight for a living wage!

20/3/19

PCS

PCS: Vote Yes to strike for better pay

20/3/19

Birmingham

Victory for Birmingham bin workers

20/3/19

Women

Stop cuts to women's services in Leicester

20/3/19

May Day

Help build the workers' press: send May Day greetings to the Socialist!

20/3/19

Socialist Party

Socialist Party Northern conference: Workers are sick of cuts and have the power to fight back

20/3/19

Racism

Union fightback key to movement against racism and austerity

20/3/19

Midlands

Midlands machine bearing makers launch all-out strike

20/3/19

Hackney

Hackney school bus workers walk out

13/3/19

Hull

Memorial to working-class fighters who fought fascism

13/3/19

Racism

No to racism - Fight for socialism

13/3/19

Southampton

Southampton: Socialist stand against cuts

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


March 2019

February 2019

January 2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999