Defending jobs

BT ballot: still waiting

On 30 September 2020, the Communication Workers Union (CWU) announced that its “Count Me In” campaign against planned job cuts and other attacks to terms and conditions by BT was “stepping into full gear.” More than seven months since that announcement, and nearly six since CWU members voted for industrial action by a 97.9% majority in a consultative ballot, the union has still not launched a formal ballot. More announcements about “intensification” and a “significant ramping up” of the campaign have followed, but no ballot. A large national ballot requires preparation. The CWU is right to...

CWU must ballot now on BT jobs!

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) continues to tell its members in BT Group, including EE and Openreach workers, to “get ready to vote yes”, in a long-promised ballot for industrial action. The union has held a series of well-attended online meetings for workers, most recently for EE workers on Tuesday 27 April. BT workers voted overwhelmingly in an indicative ballot in late 2020 for industrial action. There has been an online campaign (“Count Me In”) building support for an apparently imminent ballot. But there is still no timetable for the ballot itself. On 30 April, a CWU statement...

BT: time to fight back on jobs

170 BT Repayment engineers who work for BT Openreach have taken 15 days of strike action against management’s regrading plans for their group. Negotiations are happening this week with BT on the issues of concern including future grading and promotion opportunities. These negotiations are taking place against the background of a potential CWU company wide ballot on job cuts in BT group, i.e. BT, Openreach and EE. The largest number of job cuts has been announced in Openreach. Those are a result of management plans for site closures (mainly in London and the South East) and a significant...

Universities ballot for strikes on course cuts

Multiple branches of the further and higher education union UCU are heading for industrial action after successful ballots. Prison educators working for private firm Novus across forty-nine prisons and young offenders’ institutions were due to take their first day of strike action on 26 April, with two more to follow on 11 and 12 May. That dispute is over health and safety. Staff at London’s United Colleges Group have voted to strike over increased workloads. UCU branches at Leicester and Liverpool have held successful ballots over redundancies, which at Leicester appear to be targeting union...

Fight over job cuts

Tube drivers at Queen’s Park depot who are members of the RMT union have voted by a 99% majority for strikes to stop job cuts, after an active campaign to get the vote out. London Underground bosses want to cut the workforce by around 10%.

Although RMT reps have already won a guarantee that no...

BT workers gear up to ballot

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has been holding online meetings for members around the country, as it prepares to launch an industrial action ballot in BT Group. The union’s “Count Me In” campaign has seen well-attended meetings take place throughout recent weeks, with union reps and officers discussing how to resist BT bosses’ plans for job cuts and attacks on terms and conditions. In late March, BT announced plans to give its workers a non-consolidated “pandemic bonus” of £1,000 in cash, and £500 worth of shares, a move which the CWU denounced as a bribe, calling attention to the fact...

Union plans all-BT ballot

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) has announced plans to ballot its members working for BT, including Openreach and EE. The union said a ballot would take place “barring a dramatic eleventh-hour about-turn by a belligerent new senior management team which has now spent more than a year pursuing a brutal and needlessly confrontational agenda.” BT Group plan a restructure which the CWU says will involve site closures, job cuts, and attacks on terms and conditions, including pension arrangements. In December 2020, CWU members in BT voted by a 97.9% majority for industrial action in a...

Job cuts in schools

Financial cuts and local falling rolls in Lewisham, south-east London, are threatening school workers’ jobs. At Conisborough College, a secondary school, a proposed re-organisation is threatening to lose six teacher roles. It is thought that a second re-structure of support staff may follow. In Deptford Park, a primary school, over 20 jobs are threatened, in virtually all sections of the staff. In addition, the vast majority of support staff contracts are being altered to exactly school hours only, with a significant effect on income. NEU activists will be demanding that the schools open their...

Jobs cuts in schools

Financial cuts and local falling rolls in Lewisham, south-east London, are threatening school workers’ jobs. At Conisborough College, a secondary school, a proposed re-organisation is threatening to lose six teacher roles. It is thought that a second re-structure of support staff may follow. In...

UEL strikes 22-23 February

University of East London UCU (University and College Union) held a 230-strong solidarity strike rally on Monday 22 February, the first day of a two day strike, with staff, students and other union activists speaking. The strike is over four compulsory redundancies, including the UCU branch chair (a clear example of victimisation). UCU is also fighting rising workload, drastically increased since September 2020, when 82 jobs were cut. Speakers talked about the effects of the cuts to date, in terms of insufficient services and overwork. Many called for national action by UCU over this and a...

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