Solidarity 472, 6 June 2018

Salvini threatens to deport 500,000

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:22

Hugh Edwards

“The entertainment is over, now we mean business”, declared Matteo Salvini, leader of the racist National League and Italy’s new Minister of the Interior.

He has threatened to deport 500,000 “illegal” migrants and usher in a new regime of repressive” civil protection”.
Then news arrived of the coldblooded murder in Calabria of a young activist of the country’s United Base Union, long active among the half million or so migrant workers in the fields of the south picking fruit for 20 Euro a day and forced to live in hovels and shantytowns.

Sacco Soumalyla, from Mali and long settled in Italy,

ACAS deal wins more jobs

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:21

By Charlotte Zalens

Workers at the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) have won more jobs and commitments on workload and grading following strikes.

According to the PCS union: ″Acas management has agreed to immediately recruit extra staff and keep overall conciliation staffing levels under review, with a view to further recruitment rounds to take account of ongoing service demands and staff turnover.

″Acas has also agreed to accelerate work on a new grading redesign in response to union anger at the downgrading of work.

“In the event of case volumes leading to more pressures on the system, Acas

West Mids FBU strike

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:19

Gemma Short

Firefighters in the West Midlands have voted by 90%, on a turn out of 82%, for strikes over the creation of a two-tier workforce.

Contracts introduced by the West Midlands Fire Authority mean new firefighters entering the service will have to take on work outside the currently agreed role of a firefighter. The new contracts would allow the employer to unilaterally change the work of firefighters at any time, breaching nationally negotiated agreements with the union, the FBU.

There has also been growing tensions between FBU members and the fire authority over the imposition of non-fire service

Mixed picture in DOO strikes

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:18

By a train driver

RMT Conductor and Senior Conductor members at Greater Anglia are set to strike for two more days on 16 and 23 June, as the dispute at that franchise rumbles on.

As with Northern and Southern, where RMT members also struck on 24 and 26 May, the dispute at Greater Anglia appears no closer to a resolution and there is no sign of the union looking to escalate the action to force the employers’ hands.

Things have developed at Merseyrail and at Southwestern Railway, however. The union and Merseyrail have been at ACAS on and off for some weeks now, presumably thrashing out some sort of settlement,

TGIs strikes continue to spread

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:15

Gemma Short

Workers at TGI Fridays restaurants will strike for the fourth time on Friday 8 June.

Workers are now on strike at Covent Garden and Haymarket Piccadilly in London, Trafford Centre in Manchester, and Milton Keynes. Pickets were held at all sites during the last strike on Friday 1 June, and workers from the Trafford Centre restaurant met Labour’s Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell at the Trade Union Congress’ (TUC) 150th birthday event at the Mechanics Institute in Manchester.

TGI Fridays introduced a new tipping policy, at two days’ notice, which redirects 40% of tips received by waiting staff to

East Sussex pay strikes spread

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:13

By Patrick Murphy, NEU Executive (p.c.)

Ballots in eight schools began this week, adding to the five schools already in dispute as the campaign for fair pay in East Sussex grows.

The dispute is over the failure of the local authority to recommend the agreed union rates for teachers, (2%) across the main scale from September 2017, instead recommending 1% in the grades between the min and maximum. The sums involved are relatively small (between zero and about £10K per school).

Members in five secondary schools in the area have already taken two days of strike action which was solidly supported. A further school faced with action,

RMT decides against reaffiliation

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:12

an RMT member

The RMT SGM on 30 May voted narrowly to reject affiliation to the Labour Party. The overall vote, 25 – 31, is roughly proportionate to the votes in branches and regions on the question.

As was carried in Solidarity previously part of the blame for the failure to affiliate has been the attitude towards the question by those in the RMT national leadership who supported affiliation but posed it almost entirely as a question of influence in national structures and what kind of return would be received from the affiliation fee.

The SGM adopted a recommendation from the NEC allowing, “200 plus

London Momentum meets

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:09

Will Sefton

About 50 people came to the London regional Momentum meeting on 2 June. A bigger turnout then the previous meeting and with people attending from more local groups then previously.

The meeting was able to discuss a range of experiences from different groups as well as a useful and informative discussion as to how to build a successful profile on social media.

Members of Lewisham raised the issue of democracy and the response of the national office to the attempted breakaway AGM. Others talked about the challenges of engaging more young people and organising in CLPs particularly when they are

Educate, agitate, organise

Published on: Wed, 06/06/2018 - 15:08

Ira Berkovic

Around 40 Labour Party activists attended Southampton Momentum’s weekend school from 19-21 May. 

The event included plenary discussions on perspectives for Momentum and Labour, as well as sessions focused on planning local activity. 

Four external speakers led workshops, on the history of the Labour Party; socialist-feminism and building a working-class women’s movement; understanding and combating antisemitism on the left; and housing struggles. 
Attendees included a diverse range of comrades, from veteran activists with long histories on the far left through to new, young activists recently

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