A retail distribution driver spoke to us about recent moves by workers to break from the retail union USDAW and join Unite.
Workers at BMW’s Oxford plant have voted by 97% to oppose management’s latest pay offer.
A strike by shop-floor staff at Northern Irish branches of discount clothing retailer Primark on Friday 16 March was called off after their union USDAW received “an eleventh-hour offer” from Primark b
Workers at food and cleaning products manufacturer Unilever have begun an 11-day programme of rolling strike action at sites across the UK in an attempt to defeat bosses’ plans to scrap their final-salary pension schemes. It is the joint strategy of the three unions involved: Unite, USDAW and the GMB.
Unilever workers struck for a day on Friday 9 December as part of their battle to defend their pensions.
A strike by thousands of workers at Unilever (which manufactures well-known food products including Marmite and other household goods) could be the first major set-piece pensions battle in the private sector, after Unite, GMB and USDAW all returned massive majorities for strike action.
There were some definite positives to the 16 May “March for Jobs” organised by Unite in central Birmingham.
The turnout — up to 8,000 people, mostly rank-and-file workers — was bigger than many marchers were expecting. Unite seeming to have done a decent job of mobilising in workplaces. There were contingents from the Longbridge plant in Birmingham, as well as from steelworkers in Teesside, Visteon workers and Latin American cleaners from London. Other unions, most notably Unison, were also visibly present.
LOCAL GOVERNMENT: The decision by members of Unison’s Local Government National Joint Council to agree to binding arbitration effectively brings this year’s pay dispute to an end.
Even in 2005, Tony Blair’s Labour must have seemed to most voters at least marginally less illiberal and less rigidly attached to inequality than the Tory party of the old Thatcher minister Michael Howard.
But what about now?
Terminal 5 strikes
TGWU, GMB and UCATT members building Heathrow’s Terminal 5 struck on Friday 20 and Monday 23 January in their battle over bonuses with contractor Laing O’Rourke — despite claims in the bosses’ press that the action was being called off following a settlement.