Some 377 CWU union members who work in the D&DS section of BT are being balloted to take strike action against plans to transfer them to a contractor, ComputaCentre. At a meeting of around 40 union members in London last week there was a heated exchange between the audience and a national executive member.
People expressed their concern that the union might accept a deal if terms and conditions were agreed rather than oppose the transfer on principle. A round of workplace union meetings have been organised. Union members are distributing 10,000 leaflets to other BT workers in London raising the issues.
D&DS workers have leafleted the two main Croydon workplaces. Meanwhile activists in Connect, the union for professional grades in BT, are lobbying their executive committee to join with the CWU and ballot for action against the proposals.
'Our union has formal policy to resist outsourcing, using industrial action if necessary,' one Connect branch officer commented. 'If we don't fight now that the CWU has drawn a line in the sand, it will make it very difficult to fight the up and coming deals affecting thousands of our members.'