Wednesday, 31 January 2018

SERTUC Campaign Update - January 2018

Here is a quick notice of campaigns and events in the next few weeks and months to help you put dates in your diaries and include elements in your mailings, work programmes etc. If we have not included something, it does not mean we do not support it.

3 February       ‘NHS in Crisis. Fix it Now’ national demonstration, London

5 February       SERTUC ACAS East of England Conference, Cambridge

10 February     SERTUC LGBTIQ History Month Event

10 February     Stand Up to Racism Annual Conference

4 March          March4Women

8 March          International Women’s Day

7-9 March       TUC Women’s Conference

17 March         Stand Up to Racism national march/UN Anti-Racism Day

20-22 April      TUC Black Workers Conference

28 April          SERTUC AGM

28 April           International Workers’ Memorial Day

1 May              May Day March and Rally in London. Other May Day events are organised in London, the South East and the East of England, but not all will be on 1 May. Please check details locally.

3 May              Local elections

12 May           TUC National Demonstration in London, ‘A New Deal for Working People’

18-19 May      Levellers Day, Burford, Oxfordshire

9-10 June       TUC Trades Councils Conference, Manchester

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

NHS In Crisis: Green Party Bloc


NHS In Crisis: Green Party Bloc

  • Saturday at 11:30 AM - 2:30 PM
    4 days from now2–6°Rain Showers
  • 82 Gower St, Bloomsbury, London WC1E 6EQ
Our NHS is on its knees, thanks to ideological attacks and cuts from this Tory Government. In the 70th year of our health service, let's take to the streets to defend it.

The People's Assembly have organised this demonstration, and the Green Party is proud to support it. Join our bloc outside Waterstones, 82 Gower St, Bloomsbury, London, WC1E 6EQ from 11.30am.

Our co-leader Jonathan Bartley will be speaking at the rally at the end of the march, so make sure you stick around. More details on the demonstration can be found here:

This NHS winter crisis isn't the fault of the immigrants, the disabled, the elderly or the nurses. It's the fault of our Government. This Saturday, join us to defend our NHS.

Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group protest outside Neasden Jobcentre

 Kilburn Unemployed Workers' Group Jobcentre Closure Protest.

Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group protested outside Neasden Jobcentre on Tuesday 30th January 2018, leafleting the public and playing music, by ‘The Fall’ to mourn the fact that, the jobcentre was about to go the same way as Mark E.Smith, or nearly the same way, as he wasn’t sold off for development.

Below are proposed closure dates of Neasden & Kilburn as per The Mirror newspaper.

Neasden Chancel House, Neasden Lane, NW10 2XH - 16 February 2018 - merging with Harlesden and Wembley jobcentres.

Kilburn, 3 Cambridge Avenue, NW6 5AH - 2 March 2018 - merging with Wembley and Kentish Town jobcentres.

KUWG write: "KUWG have petitioned the DWP with signatures by claimants, and got support from local Labour MPs Tulip Siddiq, and Karen Buck, with Labour and Green Party Councillors, opposing the wretched closures. Poor, Sick, and confused people will find themselves out-of-pocket, and most likely missing appointments or being late and getting sanctioned. There have been nationwide closures and protests but this Rotten Conservative Government have been as stubborn as asses, to stop, but seem content in making our lives miserable.

David Gauke (ex-Corporate Solicitor) who pushed through this cost-cutting project, got his reward, The Ministry Of (In)Justice, although the Constituents of Brent East didn’t elect him when he stood here as a Candidate, then he was given a safe Tory Seat. No Jobcentre interviews for him! Esther McVey (ex-Family Business Director)  the new DWP Secretary of State, was kicked out of her Wirral West Seat at the 2015 election, but was then given George Loadsa money Osborne’s safe Tory seat. No Jobcentre interview for her either! Guy Opperhan (ex-Barrister), (DWP) Parliamentary Under-Secretary lost TWO elections...Theresa May seems to love below-calibre losers! The new Minister of Employment is Alok Sharma (ex-Corporate Accountant)-these are not your common man, or woman, but Corporate Schmucks! No idea of jobcentres! All eager to also push thru disastrous Universal Credit!!"

 P.Murry came to give the support of Brent Green Party and the Green Party Trade Union group and PCS (the Public and Commercial Services Union, which represents Jobcentre staff ) said "Appreciate groups like yours helping to ensure these job centres don’t just disappear from communities without any acknowledgement of their contribution and place."

KUWG are also protesting Tuesday 6th February 2018 2pm-2.30pm Outside DWP HQ Caxton House, 12 Tothill Street, SW1H 9NA   to ‘welcome’ Esther McVey as the new boss, with then a coffee-break and walk to the Ministry of (In)Justice, for 3pm-3.30pm, 102 Petty France, SW1H 9AJ to say “Hi” to ex-DWP boss David Gauke, Lest he forgets us (St James’ Park Tube Station is between them both & both near Westminster Tube)

As The Who sang: “Meet the new boss...same as the old boss”

Asbestos contaminated soil in Paddington Old Cemetery. OPEN Letter

OPEN Letter to CEO London Borough of Brent, Councillor Butt,
Councillor Southwood cc Councillor Duffy

As Green Party Trade Union Liaison Officer for Brent and for the London Federation of Green Parties, and as a council tax paying resident of the London Borough of Brent, I am very concerned to hear from Councillor Duffy’s email, that there are contamination problems arising from the dumping and disposal of asbestos contaminated soil in Paddington Old Cemetery. 

As I am sure the CEO of Brent and the Brent Councillors dealing with this matter, are aware asbestos is relatively safe when undisturbed, but if it is caused to give off dust, which is harmful if inhaled, that dust can give rise to severe health problems which may not be apparent until years later.

I would therefore like assurances that the Council did not deliberately send asbestos contaminated waste to Paddington Old Cemetery, and that once Council became aware of the presence of such waste, it ensured that:

1.  all workers dealing with the waste were fully briefed as to its potentially hazardous nature and advised to inform their GPs of possible exposure.

2.  all workers dealing with the waste were fully equipped with appropriate protection

3.  measures were taken to ensure that the waste would affect members of the public visiting the Cemetery and the students and staff of the school which neighbours the Cemetery.

4.  the school and the NEU Health and Safety representative was notified of the presence of the waste and warned when it was likely to be disturbed.

Yours sincerely Peter Murry

Sunday, 28 January 2018

The Village School in Kingsbury

As Green Party Trade Union Liaison Officer for Brent and for the London Federation of Green Parties, I am both pleased and sad to be sending support to the teachers at The Village School in Kingsbury for a second time.

I am pleased to convey the support of the Green Party to Trades unionists who oppose academisations, and because, as a UCU member, I have the greatest respect for the NEU members who are now taking strike action again to protect a public education service for the people of Brent which large amounts of council resources have been paid to develop.

I am saddened that the strike is now taking place because of the intransigence of the School Governors and their Chair, (who is also the Brent Labour Group whip), and the refusal of the Brent Labour Leader Muhammed Butt to clearly oppose academisation of the Village School; although it is becoming increasingly apparent that academisation is an expensive and unworkable policy which is of minimal benefit to education.



NEU- The National Education Union:

UCU The University and College Union 

Saturday, 27 January 2018

Daily Mirror & Sunday Mirror back the emergency NHS demonstration next week.

We're very pleased to announce that the Daily Mirror & Sunday Mirror are the latest to come on board and officially back the emergency NHS demonstration next week. 
Tens of thousands will march for our NHS next Saturday in an emergency demonstration called by The People's Assembly & Health Campaigns Together. The demonstration will demand an end the winter crisis with a cash injection to restore the NHS budget and a commitment to increased funding each year.
Emergency Demonstration - NHS in Crisis: Fix it Now
Saturday 3 February, 12pm Gower Street London, March to Downing Street
Everyday from now until the demo they'll be running stories on why the NHS demonstration is so important including interviews from the front line, details of the route and speakers, quotes from organisers, union representatives, celebs and more. 
Why are you marching?
We're asking for people to send in a short quote (under 100 words) about why they're marching and what the NHS means to them - we'll include a selection of quotes in the Mirror and use others on our website and on social media. Please also include a headshot of yourself in the email. Send these to:
How you can help:
Other exclusive stories and interviews will also be run in the Morning Star newspaper who have always backed our demonstrations, protests and been central to the anti-austerity movement. Keep an eye on their website and paper for details.
In case you missed it:

The People's Assembly Against Austerity

Friday, 26 January 2018

Come to Haringey Civic Centre to support councillors voting to stop the HDV! 7 FEBRUARY

Come to Haringey Civic Centre to support councillors voting to stop the HDV! 1st time full Council has a vote. Let's stop this madness now. From all over London, if you care about #SocialHousing - Be There! 7 FEBRUARY Ducketts Common 5.30 Civic Centre 7pm

University staff overwhelmingly back strike action in USS pensions row

University staff overwhelmingly back strike action in USS pensions row
22 January 2018
Sixty-one universities (see list below) could face widespread disruption next month after UCU members overwhelmingly backed industrial action in a row over changes to their pensions in the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS).
Overall, 88% of UCU members who voted backed strike action and 93% backed action short of a strike. The turnout was 58%^. A full breakdown of the results by institution is available here.
The union's higher education committee is meeting now to discuss the results and plan an industrial action strategy should talks about the future of the scheme fail to deliver a solution. Those talks are currently scheduled to finish tomorrow (Tuesday).
Universities UK (UUK) wants to transform the scheme from a defined benefit scheme that gives a guaranteed retirement income to a defined contribution scheme where pension income is subject to changes in the stock market.
Independent modeling of the proposals show that a typical lecturer would lose £200,000 in retirement if the UUK plans were imposed. Last week the vice-chancellors of Warwickand Loughborough universities broke ranks to criticise UUK for failing to guarantee retirement incomes for USS members.
The union said it hoped that the overwhelming mandate for strike action would focus universities' minds and that more vice-chancellors would publicly pressure UUK to agree a deal. UCU said it was happy for talks to be extended in an attempt to resolve the issue without strike action.
The union said that two rounds of cuts in USS benefits since 2011 have already left USS members with pensions worth less than those of school teachers and academics in the sector's other pension scheme, the Teachers' Pension Scheme.
UCU general secretary Sally Hunt said: 'UCU members have made it quite clear that they are prepared to take sustained strike action to defend their pensions.
'USS already offers worse benefits than other schemes available in universities, and UUK's proposals would make matters worse. I hope more vice-chancellors will pressure their negotiators to work with us to resolve the matter without strike action.'
Aberdeen, The University of
Aberystwyth University
Aston University
Bangor University
Bath, University of
Birkbeck College, University of London
Bristol, University of
Brunel University
Cambridge, University of
Cardiff University
City, University of London
Courtauld Institute of Art
Cranfield University
Dundee, The University of
Durham University
East Anglia, University of
Edinburgh, University of
Essex, University of
Exeter, University of
Glasgow, The University of
Goldsmiths, University of London
Heriot-Watt University
Hull, The University of
Imperial College London
Institute of Education
Keele University
Kent, The University of
King's College London
Lancaster, University of
Leeds, The University of
Leicester, University of
Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine
Liverpool, University of
London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
Loughborough University
Manchester, The University of
Newcastle University
Nottingham, The University of
Open University
Oxford, University of
Queen Mary, University of London
Queen's University Belfast
Reading, University of
Royal Holloway, University of London
Royal Veterinary College, University of London
Salford, The University of
Senate House, University of London
Sheffield, The University of
SOAS, University of London
Southampton, University of
St Andrews, University of
Stirling, The University of
Strathclyde, University of
Surrey, University of
Sussex, University of
University College London
Scottish Association for Marine Science (University of the Highlands and Islands)
Ulster University
University of Wales
University of Warwick
University of York
^ The overall figure includes institutions that are required to secure a 50% turnout to be able to take action (universities in England, Scotland and Wales). Queen's University Belfast and Ulster University do not require a 50% turnout.  Members in all 68 branches that were balloted voted for action. Of those, seven did not achieve the 50% turnout required.