Anti-union laws

Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Dale Street, Ollie Moore, Gemma Short, Charlotte Zalens and David Ball

CCTV workers employed by Glasgow Community Safety – a Glasgow City Council Arms Length External Organisation (ALEO) – are back at work having won a 24% pay rise after twelve strike days over six weeks. The 19 workers, all Unison members, struck to achieve equal pay, i.e. parity of shift allowance payments, with other employees who work the same pattern of 12 hour shifts in a round-the-clock service.

Strikes hit Glasgow council; Southern Rail guards strike to keep trains safely staffed; GTR bosses use courts to scupper strike; John Roan teachers strike; Government backs down on “check-off”; Parents Defending Education campaign launched.

Publications: 

Around the world: 

Trade Unions: 

Issues and Campaigns: 

Industrial news in brief

Author: 

Gemma Short, Peggy Carter and Ollie Moore

On Wednesday 24 February, workers in Further Education (FE) colleges in England will strike over pay.

University and College Union (UCU) members struck in November but this time they will be joined by workers who are organised by Unison. The dispute is in response to the imposition of a pay freeze by the employer organisation, the Association of Colleges. Imposing a pay award without union agreement is an unprecedented action by the employers, but to be expected given the confidence of the employers. Why are they confident?

FE college lecturers to strike; Tube workers vote on deal; E-ballots and the Trade Union Bill; ENO singers ballot over cuts;

Issues and Campaigns: 

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

When printworkers took on Rupert Murdoch

Author: 

Cathy Nugent

In 1986, Rupert Murdoch, working closely with the Thatcher government, set out to smash the print unions. Knowing how Murdoch did that is essential to understanding how he became a feared and feted establishment figure.

Murdoch began his domination of media business in the UK with the acquisition of the News of the World in 1968, followed by the Sun (1969), then the Times and Sunday Times (1981). Soon after acquiring the Times/Sunday Times, Murdoch pushed through major staffing cuts and a wage freeze.

In 1986, Rupert Murdoch, working closely with the Thatcher government, set out to smash the print unions. Knowing how Murdoch did that is essential to understanding how he became a feared and feted establishment figure.

Publications: 

Marxist Theory and History: 

Trade Unions: 

Issues and Campaigns: 

Setback for Trade Union Bill

Author: 

Gemma Short

The House of Lords has taken issue with the parts of the Trade Union Bill which relate to party funding and have referred them for closer scrutiny in the committee stages.

The House of Lords has taken issue with the parts of the Trade Union Bill which relate to party funding and have referred them for closer scrutiny in the committee stages.

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Around the world: 

Keep up the fight against Trade Union Bill!

The Trade Union Bill was getting a third reading in the House of Commons as Solidarity went to press on 10 November.

Campaigners with Right to Strike took a 17 metre long banner reading ″Don′t shackle our unions″ to hold in front of Parliament and leafleted the public. The Trade Union Coordinating Group organised a protest in Parliament Square, also supported by Right to Strike.

As the Trade Union Bill was getting a third reading in the House of Commons, campaigners with Right to Strike took a 17 metre long banner reading ″Don′t shackle our unions″ to hold in front of Parliament and leafleted the public.

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Fight for the Right to Strike!

On Monday 2 November, thousands of trade unionists joined the TUC lobby against the Trade Union Bill. Large delegations from the FBU, CWU and some lively Unison branches kept the mood up with chanting and music when not everyone could fit in the hall. In the evening a protest organised by the Trade Union Coordinating Group, and supported by Right to Strike, Unite the Resistance and the National Shop Stewards Network, gathered over 200 activists in Parliament square. The Trade Union Bill will have its third reading in the Commons on Tuesday 10 November before going to the House of Lords.

Thousands of trade unionists joined the TUC lobby against the Trade Union Bill.

Trade Unions: 

Publications: 

Defend our unions against Tories and the SNP!

Author: 

Ann Field

Unsurprisingly the recent Scottish Labour Party conference voted unanimously to oppose the Tories’ Trade Union Bill. But the motion, from Unison and three Glasgow Constituency Labour Parties, had its weaknesses, saying, for instance that trade unions are “good for business”. But if unions are good for business, why do so many employers derecognise them?

Nothing could better illustrate the poisonous divisiveness of the SNP that with the union-Labour link under full-scale assault from the Tories, the SNP is launching its own attack on it.

Publications: 

The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

Trade Unions: 

Around the world: 

SNP fights Trade Union Bill?

Author: 

Dale Street
SNP's Parliamentary amendment for Scotland to "opt out" of Tory anti-union plans is cynical independence ploy.

The SNP will be moving an amendment to the Tories’ Trade Union Bill that the Bill does not apply to Scotland.

Of course, the amendment will be defeated. The SNP knows that. In fact, the SNP tabled the amendment at the second reading of the Bill but did not even bother pushing it to a vote.

And these are the people who used to denounce Scotland’s then 50 Labour MPs as “the feeble fifty”!

Some ‘constitutional experts’ now argue that, having already tabled the amendment but not pushed it to a vote, the amendment cannot be tabled a second time.

Publications: 

Trade Unions: 

Around the world: 

On the streets for the right to strike

Author: 

Editorial

The Tories plan to drop the section of the Trade Union Bill that would require trade unions to give two weeks notice to the police of any material they plan to post on social media as part of a strike.

Right to Strike continues to organise protests and public activity across the country.

Publications: 

Trade Unions: 

McCluskey “bargains” on Trade Union Bill

Author: 

Gemma Short

Unite general secretary Len McCluskey has offered the government a deal on the Trade Union Bill.

On 1 October he sent David Cameron a letter offering to accept the 40% and 50% ballot thresholds in return for the introduction of electronic ballots.

It is not wrong to seek an alternative to postal balloting, which has been imposed on unions. Postal ballots ensure members vote in isolation in their home; they are plagued with problems such as members moving house or just forgetting to post their ballot paper.

Unite general secretary Len McCluskey has offered the government a deal on the Trade Union Bill.

Publications: 

Trade Unions: 

Pages