Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/706/13918
The Socialist 22 February 2012 |
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Workplace news in brief
"£8.30 - London Living Wage!" was the chant of the Initial cleaners taking strike action on 16 February outside St Pancras station in London.
The cleaners, living in one of the most expensive cities in the world and working on Eurostar, domestic trains and station areas are paid as little as £6.50 an hour, well below the figure for the 'London living wage'.
Every worker on the picket line enthusiastically signed up to support the electoral challenge of the Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC), pleased to see their union, the RMT, linking with other trade unionists to stand up and put an alternative to the pro-cuts politicians that encourage companies like Initial to suck profits out of working class people.
PCS workers at the DVLA office in Chester staged a lunchtime protest on 14 February as part of their campaign to oppose the closure of all 39 local DVLA centres with 1,200 job losses. Protests were held outside DVLA offices across the UK.
The workers were supported by Cheshire West Against The Cuts and other trade unions as leaflets were given out explaining the situation and services users signed a petition opposing the closure.
Any savings made from closing the centres will be wiped out if Vehicle Excise Duty evasion rises by a mere 0.5% - which is likely, if the service is allowed to deteriorate due to the government plans for these office closures.
Drivers on the Heathrow Express will be on strike on 26 February and 11 March in support of sacked driver Zahid Majid and RMT branch secretary Liaqat Ali. This is following a massive "yes" vote for action by the RMT members.
They will also be taking action short of a strike by not doing additional hours on the weekend of 3-5 March.
A separate industrial action ballot was 85% in favour of action to support the Heathrow Express branch secretary Liaqat Ali over his suspension from duty on spurious allegations about his trade union activities.
Management has now returned Liaqat from suspension, and all allegations have been found to be completely unfounded and potentially malicious. But now the company have provocatively started pursuing possible disciplinary charges against Liaqat.
National Shop Stewards Network
6th annual conference:
Saturday 9 June 11am - 4pm
Friends Meeting House, Euston Road, London NW1 2BJ
- RMT general secretary, Bob Crow,
- PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka
- a leading Rank and File campaigner in the construction workers' campaign
- Kevin Courtney, NUT deputy general secretary
For more information see: www.shopstewards.net
Contact the NSSN at: firstname.lastname@example.org or PO Box 54498, London, E10 9DE