Trade Union Act set to become law – Bulletin 09.12.16

9 December 2016

Trade Union Act set to become law
The new Trade Union Act is likely to be implemented in early March 2017.

Parliament will debate, probably in January, the regulations defining the list of “important public services” which will face the most stringent new strike ballot thresholds (see below) under the Trade Union Act 2016.

This will then come into effect on 1 March, or 21 days after Parliament agrees the regulations if that happens later. The expectation is that all the new restrictions on industrial action contained in the Act will come into effect on the same date.

Unite the Resistance believes we need to discuss a response to both the debate of the regulations in Parliament and on the day the Act becomes law so that trade unionists are clear about the threat and to organise our response now that the Act will be coming into force.

Read on here

Read the discussion post by joint Unite the Resistance national secretary, Sean Vernell:

“National or local?: how to build fighting unions after the Trade Union Bill” discussion post by UtR joint national secretary, Sean Vernell

Derby Teaching Assistants escalate strikes
Teaching Assistants in Derby have escalated their strikes over pay cuts. They are now set to strike on 14, 15, 19 and 20 December and then again in the new year 19 and 20 January.               

For latest information: Go here
Messages of support:
Strike fund:
Twitter: @Unisonderbycity


Back the Southern Guards’ and Drivers’ strikes

GTR bosses have lost further injunction on drivers in the ASLEF union who returned an 87 percent vote for strikes.

This means that the strikes will go ahead.
The dates are as follows:

  • Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 December (ASLEF & RMT drivers’ strike)
  • Friday 16 December (ASLEF & RMT drivers’ strike)
  • Monday 19 to Tuesday 20 December (RMT conductors’ strike)
  • Saturday 31 December to Monday 2 January (RMT conductors’ strike)
  • Monday 9 to Saturday 14 January (ASLEF & RMT drivers’ strike)

Southern have been vicious in their campaign to attempt to lay the blame for the dispute with the RMT spending tens of thousands of pounds taking out adverts in the Evening Standard.

They are quite happy to compromise on safety, while the bosses pocket the profits and enjoy big government subsidies. Why should tax payers money be used to support a company that’s running the service into the ground?

The RMT and ASLEF deserves our full support in this dispute. There is a list of how picketing has been organised in the past here

Listen to RMT President, Sean Hoyle speaking about the dispute here

Further strikes at Fujitsu Manchester
Unite has issued a further notice of industrial action for employees of Fujitsu Services Limited in the Manchester bargaining unit as part of the dispute over pay, pensions and job security.

  • From 00:01 on Saturday 10th December 2016: 72 hour (3 day) strike

For details of planned activities etc go here


RMT announce strike dates over poverty pay threat on Virgin West Coast Catering

Solidarity with Arcadia staff on strike Weds 8 and Monday 13 December

GMB members at the distribution arm of the Arcadia empire locked in fierce struggle for a living wage

Disgraced Topshop supremo Sir Philip Green is set for a turbulent run up to Christmas as GMB workers vote for fresh industrial action.

Staff at Spectrum for Arcadia, a division of the DHL Logistics Supply Chain, will walk out tomorrow (December 8) and again on Monday.

Read on here

Durham Teaching Assistants push Durham Council leaders back over threatened cuts
Over 2,700 Teaching Assistants in Durham have finally pushed Durham Council to reconsider a vicious, life changing pay cut of up to 23 percent.

It is great to see some movement after four days of fantastic days of strikes which saw over 100 picket lines in place. This is an opportunity for the council to entirely withdraw its threat of sackings and lift the attack on pay entirely.

Watch Megan Charlton speaking at Unite the Resistance conference here

Stand Up to Racism Trade Union Conference, Saturday 4 February 
Following Stand Up to Racism’s magnificent conference of 1500 people on Saturday 8 October. A Stand Up to Racism Trade Union conference has been launched for Saturday 4 February.

The election of Donald Trump in the US and the growth of anti-migrant and Islamophobic scapegoating in Britain and elsewhere have left millions of people fearful of the growth of racism.

Politicians and the media have ramped up the rhetoric against immigration while Theresa May has put the ending of the free movement of labour at the heart of her Brexit strategy.

Stand Up to Racism is organising a conference for those who believe trade unionists have to fight the attempts to divide working class people. We are stronger together, in the fight against austerity and ruthless employers.

We want to:

  • Defend our EU workmates and make sure their rights are maintained after Brexit.
  • Oppose attempts to blame migrants for falling wages and the slashing of our public services.
  • Arm trade union activists with the arguments they need to defeat racist ideas in the workplaces.
  • Build the biggest possible turn out by trade unionists on the Stand Up To Racism demos in London and Glasgow (backed by the TUC) on 18 March 2017.

Join us 12pm on Saturday 4th February for the Stand Up To Racism Trade Union Conference at (Mander Hall) NUT Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, London WC1H 9BD. Facebook event here

Register for conference here:

SUTR model motion to support conference here:

For more information go to their website here

Videos from Unite the Resistance conference “Building Fighting Unions in the era of Jeremy Corbyn

Around 300 people came to our conference held on the 12 November. The day brought together some of the people on the frontlines of resistance to cuts and fighting for equal pay.

Video highlights of the conference are now available on line. Follow this link to view them and click on a speaker’s name for their speech

Ongoing disputes that need your support:
Glasgow School Janitors:
“Fair pay”
For latest information: Go here
Messages of support:
Further strike dates: 13-18 December
Twitter: @Unison_Glasgow

ICT, Access Glagow
Messages of support:
Strike: Thursday 26 November, Rally 12.30pm Glasgow City Chambers
Twitter: Unison_Glasgow

Ritzy Cinema:
“Living Staff – Living Wage”
For latest information: Go here
Messages of support:
Twitter: @ritzylivingwage
Strike fund:
Further Strike dates: TBC

Hackney Picture House:
For latest information: Go here
Messages of support:
Twitter: @hphlivingwage
Strike fund (joint with the Ritzy):

National Post Office strike
For latest information go here
Strike dates: Some 3,500 CWU members are in dispute over cuts. Further dates TBC
Twitter: @CWUnews

London Metropolitan University
London Metropolitan University is facing a further hit to its reputation today, following a decision by the University and College Union to issue a censure of the troubled institution, with a possible international boycott to follow.

UCU are demanding a halt to a major programme of cuts and restructuring at the institution, which has largely bypassed any attempt at meaningful consultation with the unions. In fact, the current upheaval was presaged by the victimisation of UCU’s two negotiators, Mr Mark Campbell and Dr David Hardman, who were dismissed in July.

Read on here and sign the statement here


Calling all trade unionists!
Please send messages of protest at the victimisation of Penny Gower, EIS branch secretary, and the travesties of justice at Edinburgh College.

Following widespread EIS-FELA concerns at the sacking of an Edinburgh College lecturer, management is now targeting the branch secretary Penny Gower. She represented the lecturer, demonstrated the flimsy case against him, and flagged up the abuses of procedure to the EIS members.

Penny has been informed that:
‘The Principal has decided to set disciplinary processes in train to answer ‘serious allegations’ from unnamed complainant/s:

‘Concerns that Penny Gower Branch Secretary, EIS is inappropriately encouraging College EIS members to take strike action, and bring the College and HR team into disrepute.’
(The communication errors are management’s own.)

In response, the Edinburgh College EIS members have called for a strike ballot which is set to start from 24 October. The EIS seeks the dropping of disciplinary processes against Penny, and the reinstatement of the lecturer.

Please send messages of protest to Edinburgh College Regional Chair, , copied to EIS-FELA Branch Secretary

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