Anti-union laws

European Court of Human Rights approves hearing on Britain's anti-strike laws

Submitted by AWL on 8 October, 2012 - 3:05

The European Court of Human Rights has given initial approval to a submission from railworkers’ union RMT which contends that Britain’s anti-union laws are unfairly restrictive.

The submission claims that the restrictions placed on the right to strike in Britain contravene Article 11 of the European Declaration of Human Rights. The British government must now respond to the submission and, if the ECHR is not satisfied by its justifications for the UK’s anti-union laws, a full hearing will be held next year.

QCH dispute enters sixth week

Submitted by Matthew on 12 September, 2012 - 8:02

Why is there a community protest at the Queensland Children’s Hospital site in Brisbane, Australia?

Workers are demanding a union enterprise bargaining agreement with the main contractor, Abigroup, and a clause to ensure that all workers employed by subcontractors on the site are paid the rate for the job. Almost all the workers on the site are employed by subcontractors rather than Abigroup, and rates for similar jobs with different subcontractors can vary by up to $10 an hour.

How did the dispute start?

Sparks sweat on court ruling

Submitted by Matthew on 15 February, 2012 - 12:47

As Solidarity went to press, electricians working for Balfour Beatty Engineering Services were still awaiting the outcome of a High Court ruling as to whether their latest strike ballot – which returned a 66% majority for action – is legal.

If the Court rules in favour of the workers’ union, Unite, the earliest conceivable date for an official strike would be 21 February. A strike committee elected from BBES stewards agreed that any walkout would be followed by rolling and selective action as well as action short of a strike, including an overtime ban.

Sparks defy bosses and anti-union laws

Submitted by AWL on 9 December, 2011 - 11:54

Electricians working for Balfour Beatty Engineering Services struck on Wednesday 7 December, the date on which new contracts which could mean a 35% pay cut for many workers were introduced by seven of the construction industry’s biggest contractors.

Thousands of workers across the UK took action, shutting down or disrupting work on BBES sites across the country. The strike was reported 100% solid on flagship sites like the Blackfriars station redevelopment in London.

Replace the rule of profit with economic democracy

Submitted by Matthew on 14 September, 2011 - 12:08

At the TUC Congress on 12-14 September, unions backed a demonstration at the Tory party conference in Manchester on 2 October and announced plans for a huge strike by many public-sector unions against pension cuts in November.

TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said that “out-of-control traders and speculators razed our economy to the ground... The less you had to do with causing the crash, the bigger the price you are having to pay”.

Unions must fight for the right to strike

Submitted by dalcassian on 10 May, 2011 - 6:44

Tory mayor of London Boris Johnson is campaigning for new laws to make it even more difficult for workers to defend our interests by striking. Prime minister David Cameron has said that he is "open to the idea".

Tory transport minister Philip Hammond responded to the Tube drivers' recent vote to strike against victimisation of union reps by saying (5 May) that "this is only strengthening the hand of those including the Mayor who are calling for tougher industrial relations laws".

Government will use troops to break POA strike

Submitted by AWL on 31 March, 2011 - 3:06

The British state is preparing to mobilise the army to break a prison officers' strike if they take action against the privatisation of Birmingham Prison.

Commenting on the proposed privatisation, Prison Officers' Association (POA) leader Steve Gillan said "This is a disgraceful decision. Prisons should not be run for the benefit of shareholders nor for profit. The state has a duty to those imprisoned by the criminal justice system and this coalition government have betrayed loyal public sector workers for their friends in the private sector."