Solidarity 288, 5 June 2013

Industrial news in brief

Submitted by Matthew on 4 June, 2013 - 9:41

Tube cleaners working for ISS suspended a planned strike after management backed down on use of the “Bradford Factor” sickness management system (which allows bosses to sack workers for missing as few as three days) to discipline staff.

Cleaners are also demanding an end to biometric fingerprinting, and want ISS to pay the arrears of a pay rise from November 2012 to bring wages in line with the London Living Wage. ISS cleaners on new contracts have also seen their working day increase with no extra pay.

Syria and the embargo

Submitted by Matthew on 4 June, 2013 - 9:29

On 28 May the European Union ended its arms embargo on Syria. The move was driven by the UK and France. They say that they don’t intend to send arms, but instead to use the threat of sending arms to apply pressure for a deal at the Geneva conference convened by the US and Russia, which is pencilled in for 15-16 June, but may be postponed.

Politics, sexism and Facebook culture

Submitted by Matthew on 4 June, 2013 - 9:21

It’s fair to say that Facebook and Twitter have changed the face and shape of left-wing organising in Britain, particularly organising young people and students.

As well as posting about the music you like, what you’re eating, and what colour you’ve dyed your hair, you can post about your views: either on your profile, or in numerous groups.

The True Prison

Submitted by Matthew on 4 June, 2013 - 9:15

Ken Saro-Wiwa was a writer and activist. He was one of the leaders of the Movement for the Survival of the Ogoni People, a community-rights and environmental movement which challenged the power of oil companies and the Nigerian government.

In 1994, the Nigerian government launched a concerted offensive against the Ogoni people to make the region safe for oil multinationals. 3,000 people were killed. In 1995, Ken Saro-Wiwa was executed by the Nigerian government.