The Socialist 4 September 2013 |
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Workplace news in brief
Firefighters' strike vote
Firefighters have voted overwhelmingly to strike over government attacks on their pension scheme. 78% of FBU members balloted have voted for national strike action.
This is after two years of fruitless negotiations. If not opposed, the government is likely to attempt to impose the changes.
Under the proposals, firefighters over 50 who fail the fitness standards are likely to be sacked without a proper pension as the previously promised 'redeployment to less physically demanding posts' will not happen.
Firefighters already pay over 12% of their salary in pension contributions, which have steadily increased over the last few years. 25% of firefighters recruited last year have not signed up to the scheme, threatening its financial viability.
Strike dates have not been set.
Postal strike ballot
The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has announced a ballot for strike action against privatisation of the Royal Mail, jobs, pay and pensions.
Royal Mail and Parcelforce workers will start balloting on 20 September, with the result to be announced on 3 October.
There was a 96% vote to oppose Royal Mail privatisation in a consultative ballot in June.
Workers at the One Housing Group will be on strike on the 5, 6 and 9 September in their battle against pay cuts.
The workers, who provide support services to vulnerable people, are being hit with pay cuts as OHG try to make their frontline staff pay the price of competing for council care and support contracts.
They even boast of undercutting the NHS by 80%. 200 workers are facing pay cuts of up to £8,000 a year.
- Please send messages of support to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please send all donations c/o Nicky Marcus, Unite, 128 Theobalds Road, WC1X 8TN. Cheques made payable to LE/1111 or bank transfers to Unite Housing Workers LE/1111 Branch, sort code 08-60-01 Account number: 20040639
Join the picket line at One Housing, 100 Chalk Farm Road and come to a meeting at 10am on Saturday 7 September at Unite, Theobalds Road.
The Blacklist Support Group have called upon the Scottish Affairs Select Committee to widen its investigation into blacklisting to cover the NRB system in the North Sea.
Oil rig managers often put Not Required Back (NRB) on a workers' file if they have been raising questions about health and safety or have been trying to recruit to a trade union.
This has come to prominence after the Super Puma crash last week. Workers have been unable to speak publicly about it for fear of losing their livelihoods because of effective blacklisting through NRB.
The PCS civil service union has won its battle to keep the 'check off' system for union subs collection in DCLG government department. For more details see www.pcs.org.uk