Tuesday, 29 August 2017


It’s on! Get behind the 4 September #McStrike
Posted on 21/08/2017
McDonald’s workers balloted at Crayford (south east London) and Cambridge stores have voted by an incredible 95.7 percent for strikes, and their BFAWU bakers’ union has now named Monday 4 September as the first strike day.
A strike committee of workers met and decided to go for the date for their historic action–the first ever strike at McDonald’s in the UK.
The workers taking this bold step need the URGENT solidarity of the wider trade union movement. Please give generously now to their strike fund HERE
Please also rush messages of support, encouragement and solidarity for the workers to fastfoodrights@mail.com
Already, just by voting to strike and organising in the union, the workers have gained an impressive shift from McDonald’s–who have stated only now after the strike vote that by the end of 2017 they will implement the twice promised offer of a guaranteed hours contract to every UK McDonald’s worker. The workers and BFAWU rightly want this signed off, but it is a major victory for the some 80,000 workers at McDonald’s and shows what getting organised, joining a union and taking action can do.
The strike remains on, over a number of grievances at the two workplaces, and the workers are also fighting for £10 an hour minimum wage now, union recognition, and for the demand on scrapping zero hours contracts to be implemented.
What’s happening and how you can support?
Pass this #McStrike MODEL MOTION to back the strike
Give urgently and generously to the #McStrike Fund
On the Saturday before the strike, 2 September, BFAWU is holding a protest at McDonald’s HQ in East Finchley, north London. We are calling on solidarity from the wider movement on this day, with banners, collections etc, brought along in support. Join and share the Facebook page for the protest HERE.
On the day of the strike, Monday 4 September, workers at the Cambridge site will picket from 6 – 7am, while workers at the Crayford site will picket from 6 – 7.30am.
The strikers and their supporters will then come together outside parliament at 10.30/11am for a rally, speakers include Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell. Stay posted for details of what will be happening after the rally. We are asking for maximum support possible with banners and supporters gathering at the rally, and for local activists and anyone who can to show their support at picket lines where possible too.
Outside London, we are calling for solidarity protests/ leafletings at McDonald’s stores in localities (see list of those organised so far below and send us details of any your planning). Guidance for solidarity actions on the day:
HERE is a leaflet for workers in the store. Placards to use on the day are: #McStrike placard1 and #McStrike placard2
Mostly we’d like a visible presence with the materials OUTSIDE the store, with at some point a couple of activists going in to leaflet the workers on shift, and if they sign the petition, for any contact details to be sent to the campaign centrally so we can follow up. It’s important to make sure the workers know any presence is fully supportive of the workers.
Contacting local MPs, councillors, community campaigns and union branches etc is always good, and sometimes getting any supporters from there to say a few words on a megaphone outside is useful to show the broad base of support for the workers.
It’s always good to take pictures and short videos so they can be shared and give the workers taking action more confidence. We are @FastFoodRights on twitter, and will be using #McStrike and #FastFoodGlobal , so it’s good to have someone or a few people allocated to make sure pictures and videos are tweeted there so the impact of the solidarity action is greater. Please send the details of any local action once they are ready to fastfoodrights@mail.com and we will publicise on the website.
#McStrike #McSolidarity protests on 4 September:
McDonald’s @ King’s Cross / Pentonville Road
At lunchtime, 12PM-2PM, there will be a McStrike solidarity demonstration with friends and comrades from different unions and community campaigns across Central London. It will be outside the McDonald’s in King’s Cross (302-304 Pentonville Road, Kings Cross N1 9XD). Come along to show some solidarity, to inform workers, customers and passers-bys about the strike. Together we can make this strike powerful in our communities too, and let McDonald’s workers know there is a strong movement with them! Join the Facebook page for the event HERE
5pm, McDonald’s Manchester
Picadilly Gardens Mcdonalds, M1 1LY Manchester
Join the Facebook page HERE
5 PM – 6 PM, McDonalds Unit 4 Cherry Street
Temple Row, Birmingham, B2 5AL
Join the Facebook page HERE
Gleadless Valley branch of Heeley (Sheffield) CLP and Sheffield Needs a Pay Rise campaign are organising solidarity action for 4 September at McDonald’s branch in Heeley constituency, probably 2 stints one lunchtime and one tea time. More details to follow.
5 PM – 7 PM, Mcdonalds, Queen street
12-14 Queen St, W2 4 Cardiff
Join the Facebook page HERE
Milton Keynes Monday 4 September
from 12pm McDonalds, the Centre MK, 52-56 Midsummer Blvd.
Organised with Unite Community and MK Momentum
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Monday, 21 August 2017

BECTU Members at Picturehouse cinemas took further strike action 4 and 5 August 2017

BECTU Members at Picturehouse cinemas took further strike action 4 and 5 August 2017
Save the Date – 17 October 2017
‘Britain Still Needs a Pay Rise’ and ‘End the Public Sector Pay Cap’
TUC Lobby of Parliament (14.00-16.00) and Rally in Parliament Square (16.30-18.00)
BECTU members working at Picturehouse cinemas in Brixton, Hackney, Crouch End, Piccadilly, East Dulwich, and Duke of York’s Cinema in Brighton have taken strike action in recent months as part of a growing campaign for the (London) Living Wage, sick pay, maternity pay and union recognition. More than 50 strikes have been held since September 2016
BECTU members took further strike action taken on 4 and 5 August 2017 at the Ritzy, Picturehouse Central, Hackney, East Dulwich and Crouch End.
It is expected that BECTU will re-ballot members at all five sites during August to renew the mandate for further industrial action.
Management had agreed to pay the London Living Wage to staff at the Ritzy cinema in Brixton as part of a settlement to a previous dispute, but revoked that agreement.
Three union activists were recently dismissed by Picturehouse and BECTU has announced that it will challenge those dismissals at Employment Tribunals.https://www.bectu.org.uk/news/2723
BECTU has succeeded in recruiting new members at other cinemas in the Picturehouse chain, and the campaign for the London Living Wage in London, and the Living Wage outside of London has broadened and intensified.
BECTU reports that Picturehouse has repeatedly challenged the orderly behaviour of union pickets and members of the public, who are supporting striking workers, seemingly in an attempt to discourage picketing.
SERTUC has visited these BECTU picket lines on strike days many times to offer our solidarity, and it is important that trade union members and communities continue to support these trade union members in their struggle for fair pay through organised trade unionism.
·         stay alert for further information about the dispute: see www.bectu.orrg.uk
·         Urge your MP to sign the Early Day Motion https://www.parliament.uk/edm/2016-17/1000
·         The campaign by union members at Picturehouse has secured substantial support, both local and national.  Please help them in their fight by donating to their strike fund
·         Tweet @RitzyLivingWage

Save the Date – 1 October 2017
People’s Assembly National Demonstration, Manchester: “No More Austerity – Scrap the Pay Cap
Save the Date – 12 October 2017
Britain Deserves a Pay Rise and End the Cap Now, London Demonstration
Save the Date – 17 October 2017
Britain Still Needs a Pay Rise and End the public Sector Cap, Lobby of Parliament and Rally

Laurie Heselden
Regional Policy and Campaigns Officer
TUC – London, South East and East of England

T: 0207 467 1292 (DL) and 0207 467 1220 (Darren Lewis/Joanne Williams - Office Administrators)
m: 0781 800 2877        e: lheselden@tuc.org.uk        @TUCLaurieHeseld        www.tuc.org.uk/sertuc

Thursday, 17 August 2017

Exploitative conditions in Chinese electronics factories.

Dear Friends,
You're probably aware of the very harsh and exploitative conditions in Chinese electronics factories. This came to world attention in 2010 when there was a wave of workers' suicides at the Foxcon factory, which produces Apple's iPads and iPhones. Although the company has made some slight improvements in conditions, its main response was to introduce large numbers of robots.
Jack Linchuan Qiu, whose book 'Goodbye iSlave' documents working conditions and workers' attempts to organise in Chinese electronics factories will be in London on Septemeber 6th 2017, and Breaking the Frame is organising a meeting with trade unionists to inform and build solidarity with Chinese workers. You are invited to attend/send a delegate to the meeting, which will be at 3PM on September 6th at the Feminist Library meeting room, 5A Westminster Bridge Road, London, SE1 7XW.
If you are able to attend, please let us know by emailing dave@breakingtheframe.org.uk. Please help us publicise this event by forwarding this email to your colleagues.
Again, please forward this information to colleagues and other interested parties.
We look forward to seeing you on September 6.
In solidarity,
Dave King

Monday, 14 August 2017

Newsletter No.10 from the Greener Jobs Alliance.

Here's the link to Newsletter No.10 from the Greener Jobs Alliance.
August, 2017
Another world is possible

Words are powerful and can shape our understanding. Dull words like ‘environment’ don’t sparkle. Scientist George Monbiot argues that , “If we called protected areas ‘places of natural wonder’, we would not only speak to people’s love of nature but also establish an aspiration that conveys what they ought to be. Let’s stop using the word environment, and use terms such as ‘living planet’ and ‘natural world’ instead, as they allow us to form a picture of what we are describing. Let’s abandon the term climate change and start saying ‘climate breakdown’. Instead of extinction, let’s adopt the word promoted by the lawyer Polly Higgins: ecocide.”

Wednesday, 9 August 2017

"Moving the trade unions past fossil fuels".

"Moving the trade unions past fossil fuels". Interview with Sam Mason of PCS, the civil service union, on People & Nature.

Monday, 7 August 2017

Opportunity to show support for the UNITE strikers working for SERCO

Date: 7 August 2017 at 14:45
Subject: SERCO London Hospital Workers Pay Strike Forthcoming Events

Further to *SERTUC Public Services Committee* support for SERCO London Hospital Dispute

Please support and share two forthcoming events:

*Solidarity Rally*

*Saturday 19 August 2017*

Opportunity to show support for the UNITE strikers working for SERCO at
Whipps Cross Hospital.

Details: *https://www.facebook.com/events/1381041878659528/?active_tab=about

*Fundraiser Dinner* *Thursday 7 September 2017*

Thanks to the Star of India for hosting a fundraiser for the UNITE strikers
working for SERCO at Whipps Cross Hospital.

Thursday, 3 August 2017

The Green Party Trade Union Group & London Fed sends a message of solidarity to the Striking workers employed by Serco at Barts Health NHS Trust.

The Green Party Trade Union Group sends a message of solidarity to the Striking workers employed by Serco at Barts Health NHS Trust. The way these Unite members, who do vital work in the NHS, have stood up to an exploitative employer, with strike action, now including a 14 day strike is an example to Trade Unionists and workers everywhere. We support their struggle and hope they gain a victory.

Our support is endorsed by the London Federation of Green Parties at its meeting on 2/8/2017.

Striking workers from Barts to stage protest outside Serco investors meeting

02 August 2017
WHERE: JP Morgan, 60 Victoria Embankment EC4Y 0JP
WHEN:  Thursday 3 August 2017, 08:00-09:00
Striking workers employed by Serco at Barts Health NHS Trust will stage a protest outside JP Morgan where Serco will present its half year financial results for 2017 to investors on Thursday (3 August). 
Unite members have already held a 48 hour strike on Tuesday 4 July and took seven days of action from Tuesday 11 July. Workers began a 14 day strike on 25 July and further strike action will also be planned for August and September unless Serco comes forward with a reasonable offer for all of the workforce. 
Unite regional officer Ruth Hydon said: “Wealthy investors need to be aware that Serco is profiting from low paid, hard-working staff who have endured getting poorer year on year because of below inflation pay deals.  Workers regularly report getting home late, tired and sore from the intense workload heaped on them by Serco. They deserve better treatment and better pay.  
“We hope Serco’s investors will urge the company to resolve this dispute across four London hospitals. All the workers are asking for is an extra 30p an hour to help them afford the most basic items like food, rent and travel.  It is time for Serco to get around the negotiating table with Unite and resolve this dispute." 
Serco won the £600 million soft services contract for Barts Health NHS Trust last year. The company made a profit of £82 million in 2016. Unite members employed by Serco as domestic staff, porters and security workers at Barts Health NHS Trust want a 30p per hour wage increase but the claim has been rejected by Serco.  
Workers also called for a strike ballot because porters at Whipps Cross Hospital are up in arms over Serco’s plans to cut jobs, and to make matters worse Serco has also increased workloads to unsustainable levels for cleaners across the trust. 
Notes to editors 
Unite members were balloted across Whipps Cross University Hospital, Royal London Hospital, St Bartholomew’s Hospital and Mile End Hospital (Newham Hospital is not involved in the strike).  
For more information please contact Ciaran Naidoo on 07768 931 315 
  • Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest trade union with over 1.4 million members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.

the biggest attempted privatisation of local authority assets in UK history

Update on the Stop HDV campaign

Gordon Peters of Haringey Green Party and Stop the Haringey Development Vehicle Campaign writes below to mobilise people to support the judicial challenge to Haringey Council and the march on 23 September. This is becoming a London wide issue. It is thought that Camden Council are considering a similar setup. There will be a meeting hosted by Sian Berry in Camden Town Hall to discuss that on Tuesday Aug. 8 at 6.30. Find out more about the Haringey campaign at https://www.facebook.com/2billionpoundgamble/  and http://stophdv.com/.

Please spread this far and wide!

Anne Gray

Gordon Peters says....

  Update on the Stop HDV campaign:

 A Judicial Review of this is being filed in the High Court this week [by 4 August] on the grounds of it not having been consulted on, nor   even having gone to a full Council, on equalities impact not having been adequately considered, and on the risk to public finances not being made transparent or explained. There was a successful crowdfunding campaign which along with local collections and donations has raised  £25,000 towards legal costs. The last update on this is on <www.crowdjustice.org/case/stop-hdv>. The campaign is a broad coalition of forces including both constituency Labour parties, LibDems, Greens, trades unions, community organisations, residents' and leaseholders' associations. Despite this the ‘red Tory’ Labour Cabinet led by Claire Kober, who also is chair of London Councils, are determined to go ahead with the £2 billion transfer of the local authority’s Council estates, land and property including over 500 business units to a partnership with Lendlease. We believe however they cannot sign any contracts while this in legal dispute and a hearing could be any time through the autumn.

September is a critical month in linking this — the biggest attempted privatisation of local authority assets in UK history — with the various similar attempts at social cleansing and depriving ordinary people of their rights to housing across London in favour of corporate developer-led ‘’regeneration’’. We are aware particularly of what Lendlease has done in Southwark, of the Cressingham Gardens campaign in Lambeth, and of new developments in Tower Hamlets, and possibly Camden, and in most cases in Labour-controlled authorities. We wish to mobilise with groups such as the Radical Housing Network, ASH, Defend Council Housing, those demanding justice for Grenfell in K and C, and others to build a fightback across London sufficient to turn the tide against these ‘’regenerations’’ which are attacking the very lives of our communities.

StopHDV is calling a march on Saturday 23 September in Haringey which will have key speakers from elsewhere as well and we want as many as possible from across the capital to join. First details below:

The plan so far is to assemble on Saturday 23rd September at around noon at Tottenham Green (150 yards up the hill from Seven Sisters Tube station), then march from 1pm to assemble around 2.30 - 3  at Finsbury Park.  The route should take us past Seven Sisters up West Green Road along Green Lanes to Finsbury Park. Depending on consent from the authorities, we may have to reverse the route and start at Finsbury Park.
Finsbury Park is by two tube stations (Manor House and Finsbury Park.). It is also where Haringey, Hackney and Islington meet and not far from the Camden borders. No local Spurs match that day  (they'll be playing at Wembley) and no Arsenal one either, so no congestion on transport from football crowds.  
The start and end points should make it fairly easy for most of London to get to and from. It just needs building across London. Please tell your contacts!

Any comments/suggestions you have would be most welcome. If we all work together we should be able to build a sizeable march that could get publicity in the weekend before Labour Party conference, when a motion on Social Cleansing is being debated.

Wednesday, 2 August 2017

Britain Still Needs a Pay Rise rally etc

Britain Still Needs a Pay Rise rally and lobby
Tuesday 17 October rally in Parliament Square with TU general secretaries, Jeremy Corbyn, Frances O’Grady and public sector workers, 4pm to 6pm, focused lobby 2pm to 4pm with union briefing 1pm onwards

Colchester: Banner Theatre The union makes us strong
Tuesday 21 November 7.30pm details from r.pigott@levysolicitors.co.uk

Trade Union actions
London pay demonstration & rally
ATL, FBU, GMB, NUT, PCS, SERTUC, UCU, Unison, Unite Thursday 12 October assemble 5.30pm opposite Downing Street, march via Departments of Health, Treasury, Education, Home Office and then rally outside Parliament
Pride events in the SERTUC region
·         Brighton 4 August https://pinkuk.com/events/brighton-pride-2017 Supported by Unite janet.henney@unitetheunion.org.uk
·         Margate 12 August http://www.margatepride.org/ Supported by Unison r.harley@unison.co.uk
·         Southampton 26 August https://pinkuk.com/events/southampton-pride-2017 Supported by Unison r.harley@unison.co.uk and Unite janet.henney@unitetheunion.org.uk
·         High Wycombe 26 August speakers and march supported by NUT https://www.facebook.com/events/420284928328175/http://lgbtbucks.org/high-wycombe-pride-is-coming-26th-august-2017/
·         Hastings 27 August http://hastingspride.co.uk/
·         Hertfordshire 2 September https://pinkuk.com/events/herts-pride-2017
·         Reading 2 September https://pinkuk.com/events/reading-pride-2017 Supported by Unison r.harley@unison.co.uk and Unite janet.henney@unitetheunion.org.uk

Other actions/events
Sylvia Pankhurst Memorial Lecture

Saturday 12 August 7pm at the Workers’ Stately Home, Wortley Hall, near Sheffield, to be delivered by Sylvia’s granddaughter Helen Pankhurst “Deeds not Words: changes in women’s lives since 1918” http://sylviapankhurst.gn.apc.org/