Unite

First Group: put drivers first!

Author: 

Rosie Huzzard

On Friday 10 July drivers for First South Yorkshire (part of the multinational First Group) struck for the first time on a ballot over pay.

On Friday 10 July drivers for First South Yorkshire (part of the multinational First Group) struck for the first time on a ballot over pay.

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Vestas: the RMT and Unite

Author: 

Rhodri Evans

Activists from the RMT union, which mainly covers rail, bus, and sea workers, joined the Vestas workers outside the factory from very early on.

These were not full-time officials, but branch representatives from the RMT Portsmouth branch which organises the Portsmouth-Ryde ferry workers, especially Richard Howard, branch secretary, and Mick Tosh, branch chair.

Activists from the RMT union, which mainly covers rail, bus, and sea workers, joined the Vestas workers outside the factory from very early on.

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Victory to the solidarity strikes!

Author: 

Martin Thomas

Solidarity strikes have spread across Britain to beat the union-busting attempted by oil multinational Total and its contractors on their construction site at the Lindsey Oil Refinery site in Lincolnshire.

Many thousands of workers have struck over a principle, though the immediate bread-and-butter issue concerns just 51 workers. Such solidarity is the muscle-fibre of all working-class strength and dignity. That is why the Tories made it illegal in the 1980s, and why New Labour has kept the Tory laws.

Industrial action over pay by the National Union of Teachers was one of the first casualties of the economic crisis. After winning Solidarity strikes have spread across Britain to beat the union-busting attempted by oil multinational Total and its contractors on their construction site at the Lindsey Oil Refinery site in Lincolnshire. Many thousands of workers have struck over a principle,a concrete mandate for action in a ballot, the union took a single day of action to demand the government meet a pay claim.

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A victory for militancy!

Author: 

Rob Hope

Rob Williams, Unite convenor at the Linamar car plant in Swansea, has been re-instated following his sacking by the company last month. Rob was sacked for his record of defending members’ interests and building solidarity with the Visteon struggle.

The company’s capitulation is a huge victory for Rob and for the workers at Linamar who voted overwhelmingly for industrial action to save Rob’s job.

Rob Williams, Unite convenor at the Linamar car plant in Swansea, has been re-instated following his sacking by the company last month.

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Unite union calls national ballot in engineering construction

Author: 

Martin Thomas

The Unite union has called a national ballot on industrial action in the engineering construction industry over revision of the national union agreement for that industry. Meanwhile, on 11 June, construction workers at the Lindsey Oil Refinery - centre of the wave of walk-out in January/ February - have struck.

On 11 June construction workers walked out again at Lindsey Oil Refinery; and the Unite union called a national ballot for industrial action in engineering construction.

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Combatting the BNP on the doorsteps

Author: 

Charlie Salmon

Activists from Nottinghamshire Stop the BNP returned to the streets in their campaign against the British National Party. Leafleting door-to-door in the Beeston area of Nottingham, a small group of anti-fascists found themselves on the same front steps as the BNP, who’d covered the area a short time before.

Leafleting door-to-door in the Beeston area of Nottingham, a small group of anti-fascists found themselves on the same front steps as the BNP, who’d covered the area a short time before.

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The AWL, Labour and the Left: 

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New wave of solidarity strikes

Author: 

Martin Thomas

New strikes over jobs and union agreements have broken out in engineering construction similar to those at the end of January and the start of February this year.

According to Contract Journal (19 May), the dispute started with 50 laggers walking out at the South Hook Liquified Natural Gas terminal in Milford Haven.

Utility Week reported (20 May) “around 200 workers... picketing the South Hook liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal at Milford Haven. They include some from the nearby Dragon LNG terminal.”

Walk-outs in solidarity were reported from:

New strikes over jobs and union agreements have broken out in engineering construction similar to those at the end of January and the start of February this year.

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March? Good. But it’s only a start

Author: 

Daniel Randall

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.

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.

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Jobs, deals and Europe

Author: 

Bob Sutton

Bob Sutton spoke to two Midlands carworkers about the jobs fight, the construction workers’ action, and the environmental issues in their industry.

Larry Gathrie (worker at Landrover’s Whitley development site)

We’re all waiting to see whether we're going to get the guarantees from the government for the £140 million from the European Investment Bank. Otherwise it’s very much hand to mouth at the moment.

Bob Sutton spoke to two Midlands carworkers about the jobs fight, the construction workers’ action, and the environmental issues in their industry.

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Union News in Brief, UNITE, PCS, CWU and NUT

Author: 

Camila Bassi

UNITE: You might think the leaders of a union whose members occupied the Visteon factories and took wildcat strike action in engineering construction would be pre-occupied with struggle.

You might think the leaders of a union whose members occupied the Visteon factories and took wildcat strike action in engineering construction would be pre-occupied with struggle.

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Visteon: Gains won, but pickets continue

Author: 

Vicki Morris

Visteon workers who occupied or picketed their plants when they were sacked without notice on 31 March have won an important victory.

Many of the workers at the three plants in Basildon, Belfast and Enfield had been on Ford mirror contracts, since the company was spun off from Ford in 2000, but when Visteon UK went into receivership the company claimed it did not need to honour the contracts, even though the international company is still solvent.

Visteon workers who occupied or picketed their plants when they were sacked without notice on 31 March have won an important victory.

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Support "whistleblower" who stood up for patients

Nurses, and other workers in jobs involving care for vulnerable people, need the right to be "whistleblowers" without losing their jobs.

The Unite union and the Royal College of Nursing have urged support for Margaret Haywood, a nurse who on 17 April was not only sacked but disqualified from nursing for covertly filming mistreatment at her workplace in order to expose it.

The Unite union and the Royal College of Nursing have urged support for Margaret Haywood, a nurse who on 17 April was disqualified from nursing for covertly filming mistreatment at her workplace in order to expose it.

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Visteon workers win concessions, but the struggle is not over

1 May: The sacked workers who have been occupying or picketing the Visteon car-parts factories in Belfast, Enfield, and Basildon since 31 March have won significant concessions.

1 May: The sacked workers who have been occupying or picketing the Visteon car-parts factories in Belfast, Enfield, and Basildon since 31 March have won significant concessions.

The bosses have offered much-increased redundancy payments, seriously above the legal minimum.

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Visteon: fighting for a better deal

Visteon

Author: 

Vicki Morris

“We were made redundant without any notice, we weren’t offered any redundancy pay, we were going to lose our pensions, and then they were going to make us into criminals for objecting to it!”

“The real people are the people that pay their taxes and try their best to keep within the law. But the law has failed us, and this is the reason why we have to take the action we have taken. The law does not recognise us. You can see the amount of support going on there. People are fed up of the status quo and we need change and we need it now.

Sacked Visteon workers are into the third week of their campaign against Ford and Visteon motor companies.

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