Defending jobs

Ballot for action on job cuts

We’re balloting our members working across the four Tate galleries, in London, Liverpool, and St. Ives, for industrial action to resist job cuts. The ballot runs from 22 July to 3 August. A consultative ballot of members has already returned a 93% vote in favour of action on a 99% turnout. The employer wants to cut 200 jobs, as part of a cuts package aimed at saving £1 million this financial year. That’s part of a wider picture in the culture sector, which has taken a significant financial hit in the pandemic, which bosses will be looking to recoup via cuts. Our reps and branches have done...

The UK has the lowest sick pay of all rich countries

On average, across all the 34 OECD (richer) countries, workers receive about 70% of their last wage as statutory (or mandatory) sick pay (SSP). It is as high as 100% in a significant number of countries. This sick pay has to be paid by employers for a period of time. In the UK it is up to 28 weeks. But the UK’s £95.85 per week statutory level is now the lowest, as a percentage of earnings, of all OECD countries. In the UK as elsewhere some workers are covered by agreements with employers which provide much better sick pay, but the low level of statutory sick pay is a scandal. Since the...

"We're showing them we're not weak" - Tower Hamlets workers strike again

After strikes on 3, 6 and 7 July, Tower Hamlets council workers will strike again 15-17 July to overturn the “Tower Rewards” scheme attacking their terms and conditions. Tower Hamlets Unison’s adult social care convener Amina Patel spoke to Sacha Ismail about their fight. For ways you can support the strike, including picket lines, donations and solidarity messages, see the Tower Hamlets Unison website. Please also add your name to this statement. We’ve been overwhelmed by the support we’ve had since the action began. This dispute has been on the cards for over a year, but with the pandemic we...

Threat to rail jobs

Extracts from Tubeworker and Off The Rails On London Underground [LU], we hear a manager in Stations Structural Maintenance has been appointed to conduct a “headcount review” of the entire department. Tory-appointed auditors KPMG may be recommending similar reviews elsewhere. The unions need to prepare to fight job cuts wherever they’re proposed. Boris Johnson has suggested in an interview that one condition of ongoing government funding for Transport for London and LU should be a move towards driverless trains. “Let’s not be prisoners of the unions.” Although the real technical barriers to...

Make Labour fight for “grand schemes”!

Both the government and the scientists who criticise it say that finding people with Covid-19 symptoms, testing to confirm, tracing their close contacts, and getting sufferers and contacts to self-isolate, is central to controlling the virus. Shadow Chancellor Anneliese Dodds told the Marr show on Sunday 5 June: “I’m not going to say to you that Labour is going to be advocating some massive grand scheme right at this moment when social care is in crisis”. But we need grand schemes exactly at this time of crisis! The Tories’ floundering has imposed a massive grand Covid-19 death toll, threatens a massive grand risk of a whole new second wave of the virus, and is generating massive grand job cuts.

University staff rally against cuts

On 25 June, over 500 people attended an online rally jointly organised by branches of the University and College Union (UCU) at Imperial College, SOAS, Roehampton and Liverpool Universities in parallel with socially-distanced protests in Liverpool and London. Those institutions are facing some of the harshest cuts in the university sector. Management at Reading have threatened to sack the entire workforce and rehire only those prepared to accept inferior terms and conditions. Roehampton staff have been asked to take a voluntary pay cut, and a redundancy scheme is up and running. Their branch...

British Airways threatens to fire and rehire

British Airways has seized on the pandemic crisis to attack the terms and conditions of its entire workforce. Using the claim that they need to impose redundancies, they are attempting to fire and re-hire every BA worker. Only weeks into the furlough scheme, with the state picking up almost the whole wage bill for BA staff, the company issued redundancy notices to 42,000 staff, with a deadline of 14 June to accept a wholescale change to their contracts and pay. BA was one of the first companies to argue that the lockdown left them no choice but to cut jobs and wages. Unite, the main union in...

Tube unions plan funding campaign

Unions organising across Transport for London and London Underground will hold a joint online rally on 15 July, to launch a campaign for increased funding for TfL and against cuts. At the time of going to press, RMT, Aslef, and Unite were backing the rally, with TSSA also expected to come on board. Exact details, including the time, had yet to be confirmed. Since the Tories abolished the central government subsidy to TfL, it has been almost wholly reliant on funding from fares and commercial revenue streams, meaning it was plunged into a profound financial crisis when passenger levels dropped...

Halting the Job Cuts Express

We know that job cuts are coming, thundering down the track towards us like a runaway freight train, loaded with attacks on our pay, conditions and pensions as well.

Wabtec has already announced job cuts at its Doncaster site, Heathrow Express is threatening to cut over a hundred posts, and we...

Defend Wabtec jobs!

Bosses at the Wabtec rail refurbishment factory in Doncaster have announced a plan to cut 450 jobs in several waves, starting in August and running through to March 2021. The cuts would halve the workforce.

The plans are now out for consultation, and responding should be quick and easy: not one...

This website uses cookies, you can find out more and set your preferences here.
By continuing to use this website, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions.