Underground cleaners lobby parliament
London Underground cleaners in the T&G union lobbied parliament last week against plans for over 200 compulsory redundancies. The T&G and RMT unions called off a strike ballot after management withdrew the plans
BBC deal over redundancies
The NUJ and Bectu media worker unions called off a strike set to hit the BBC on Monday of this week. The strike was over management’s plans to make six workers compulsorily redundant.
But the threat of a strike made management postpone a number of compulsory redundancies. Bosses also confirmed that most of the compulsory redundancies had been avoided.
Notice of dismissal would be lifted from other staff who had not secured resettlement positions elsewhere in BBC News, they said.
Those without replacement posts now have a stay of execution until 1 May to find jobs.
The unions have warned that strike action could be revived if notice of redundancy is issued to them.
Bectu members in news production facilities at the BBC who were set to strike for three days this week, have had their dispute over rotas referred to the Acas conciliation service.
Construction vote over pay
About 130 workers are taking part in a ballot for a strike over pay at fabrication specialist Heerema.
The workers, members of the Amicus and GMB unions, at the Hartlepool construction plant are pipe fitters and crane operators.
The company designs, constructs, transports, installs and removes offshore facilities for the oil and gas industry.
Acas talks at Central trains
Strike action planned by 550 senior conductors at Central Trains last Saturday was suspended after agreement with the company to resume talks with the RMT union through the conciliation service Acas.
The company’s blanket ban on release of RMT reps for union activities and the overtime ban imposed by the company have both been lifted.
The company has also re-instated local application leave arrangements.
“In the light of the company’s revised position the RMT executive has suspended strike action scheduled for Saturday,” said RMT general secretary Bob Crow.
Diakola Mvemba anti-deportation demonstration in Middlesbrough
Around 150 people braved driving rain to support a demonstration in Middlesbrough last Sunday for Diakola Mvemba and other members of the Congolese community across Britain.
Diakola, his wife Diki and their three sons were some of the 40 Congolese due to be deported on a special charter flight this week.
Diakola said, “Our family have been part of the Middlesbrough community for the last two years, the happiest days of our lives.”
The marchers passed the home of Middlesbrough Labour MP Sir Stuart Bell. He has made no comment on the case.
Public Services Not Private Profit rally in Westminster
Around 40 local trade unionists attended a Public Services Not Private Profit meeting in Westminster, central London, on Thursday of last week.
Speakers included Judy Moorhouse, executive member of the NUT teaching union, Paul Mackney, the joint general secretary of the lecturers’ UCU union, and Tony Benn.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka spoke about the calendar of events to take forward the fight over job cuts and pay.
For more information phone 07900 558 014.
Defend Esol teaching
Lecturers were set to lobby parliament on Wednesday of this week against plans to cut access to free English language courses for migrants.
Paul Mackney, the joint UCU general secretary, will speak at a meeting in the House of Commons to be held at the same time.
Other speakers will include MPs, college principals, trade unionists, and spokespeople from the Refugee Council and organisations representing language tutors and adult education tutors and students.
Coaches have been organised to bring people from across Britain to explain to MPs the value of courses that will be jeopardised despite massive waiting lists.
Over 50 organisations are involved in the campaign and 141 MPs have signed a motion (EDM 383) calling for a government rethink.
Bolton Rethinking Education day
On Saturday 10 March Bolton NUT teachers’ union and Bolton Unison are holding a free day of ideas and debate on the theme of “rethinking education”.
It takes place at Bolton Community College, Manchester Road from 9.30am.
Speakers include John McDonnell MP, Alex Callinicos, Terry Wrigley, Christine Blower and others. Go to www.rethinkinged.org.uk