Unions & Equalities

Weinstein case exposes reality of work-related sexual assaults Matthew Wed, 10/18/2017 - 08:59

Dozens of women have come forward accusing the famous Hollywood producer, Harvey Weinstein, of sexual harassment, assault and rape, with some cases dating back to the 1980s. Many women detail how he would corner them asking for sexual favours with the clear implication that he could make or break their careers. Mainstream media, celebrities, and even politicians are condemning the actions of Weinstein and sending messages of solidarity to the survivors of Weinstein’s assaults.

Industrial news in brief Matthew Wed, 04/12/2017 - 12:28

National Union of Teachers (NUT) members at Forest Hill School in Lewisham will strike again on 20, 25 and 26 April in their campaign against vicious cuts being imposed by management to fulfil conditions of repayment of loan to Lewisham council. There is a demonstration on Saturday 22 April.

The proposed restructure at the school is in response to a £1.3m deficit. Lewisham council has given the school a “loan” however they are demanding that the school cuts £800,000 from their wage bill.

Marxism and autism

Submitted by Matthew on 29 March, 2017 - 12:13 Author: Janine Booth

Can Marxism can help us to understand autistic experience in modern capitalism? How might Marxism inform our struggles for equality and liberation?

There are different approaches to understanding autism. Perhaps the dominant approach is a medical one: seeing autism as a disease or tragedy, and autistic people as being broken and needing fixing. Over recent years, a more progressive approach has developed. It stresses acceptance of autistic people rather than simply “awareness”, and demands rights, equality and support rather than abusive “treatments”.

Union report highlights harassment... in its own workplaces

Submitted by Matthew on 5 October, 2016 - 10:40 Author: Ann Field

According to a report leaked to the Guardian last week, over half of Unite the Union’s 74 female officials have been bullied or sexually harassed by fellow officials or by union members.

One example of the kind of behaviour complained of was: “I have to sit among colleagues who refer to our secretaries as the girls … [They] think it is correct to refer to black people as coloured, talk about chairmen, and refer to women as a piece of skirt.”

For a world where diversity is normal

Submitted by Matthew on 15 June, 2016 - 12:21 Author: Val Graham

Val Graham reviews Autism Equality in the Workplace by Janine Booth.

Janine Booth, poet and author of Autism Equality in the Workplace, is both a worker and trade union activist. A member of the TUC Disabled Workers Committee, her handbook Autism in the Workplace was published online by the TUC in 2014.

TUC Disabled Workers' Conference: planning the fightback

Submitted by cathy n on 26 May, 2016 - 1:34 Author: Janine Booth, Co-Chair TUC Disabled Workers' Conference

Nearly 200 delegates from dozens of trade unions gathered in London on 19 and 20 May to discuss issues affecting disabled workers and plan the fightback against discrimination and austerity cuts.

Removing barriers for autistic workers

Submitted by Matthew on 18 May, 2016 - 12:09 Author: Cathy Nugent

Cathy Nugent reviews Autism Equality in the Workplace: Removing barriers and challenging discrimination by Janine Booth.
Available to buy online here.

This is not a book of advice for autistic people on how to adapt to work or how to socialise with colleagues. There are other books and resource that do that.

RMT AGM pledges to fight attacks Matthew Fri, 07/03/2015 - 17:05

The Annual General Meeting of the Rail, Maritime and Transport (RMT) union voted to back Jeremy Corbyn’s bid for Labour leader, fight the Tories’ attacks on trade union rights, and step up its work on equalities.

As well as committing to militant industrial struggles, delegates also voted unanimously for several emergency resolutions from branches opposing the tightening of anti-union laws promised in the Queen’s Speech. These included support for a national demonstration and rank-and-file conference this year.

Disabled workers' conference pledges fightback against Tory attacks AWL Tue, 06/02/2015 - 16:55

TUC Disabled Workers’ Conference, meeting two weeks after the general election, resolved to mobilise and take direct action – and called on the full Trades Union Congress to do the same. Nearly 200 delegates debated and passed a variety of resolutions and discussed issues and strategies with guest speakers.

RMT rule changes

Submitted by Tubeworker on 18 November, 2014 - 9:10

The next RMT Annual General Meeting, in June 2015, will be a chance to discuss changes to the union’s rules.

The Executive will be submitting its own proposals arising from the review of the union’s structure - but rank-and-file members can also submit proposals through branches.

Eight branches need to submit any particular proposal for it to get on the agenda. Off The Rails is promoting five proposals: see the insert in the zine for the full wording.