Socialist Worker

Reports round-up

Issue No. 2058

Protest by Wigan care workers

Care workers in Wigan held an angry protest against privatisation on Wednesday of last week. More than 600 council staff are under threat.

The care workers in the Unison union fear they will lose pay, pension rights and union representation under the deal.

Earlier, Labour council leader Lord Smith of Leigh further enraged shop stewards by insisting he had no time to formally accept a 6,000 name petition against the plan.

Senior Unison shop steward Dave Lowe said that New Labour’s agenda was the transfer of wealth from the public to the private sector.

Masih family back in Wales

People in Swansea are appalled at the terrifying treatment inflicted on a family of five when a squad of immigration officers in riot gear raided their home in Port Tennant.

Matthew Masih aged ten and his two younger sisters Mary and Rose, were hauled away to a removal centre in London in readiness for deportation.

The Masih family are Catholic and the children’s father Marcus, who was also detained, fled Pakistan after facing religious persecution.

A last minute temporary reprieve was granted after neighbours and the family’s local church protested against the deportation.

When the family returned to Swansea they were met by neighbours and members of the church. Marcus Masih said, “It’s great to be back on Welsh soil. I have a great love for Welsh people.”

Huw Pudner

Anglian Windows workers strike

members of the GMB union working at Anglian Windows in Norwich took their sixth day of strike action when they struck for 24 hours on Tuesday.

The GMB says the ongoing dispute centres on outstanding backpay of £400,000 owed to the 300 workers.

There are also issues over pay and bonus schemes.

A strike planned for Friday of last week was suspended pending talks between the union and managment. GMB negotiatiors had recommended that Tuesday’s strikes were also suspended but workers wanted to push ahead with the action.The next strike day has been called for Monday of next weeks.

Siemens workers to strike over pay

Members of the PCS civil service workers’ union and the Bectu media workers’ union working for Siemens’ companies have voted overwhelmingly to take strike action over pay.

PCS members in Siemens IT Solutions and Services (SIS) and Siemens Corporate Shared Services voted by 72 percent to take strike action. This followed a pay offer of 3 percent.

Bectu members working in two Siemens companies on BBC contracts also voted by a large majority for strike action.

The unions will be discussing coordinating action.

Anti-cuts campaign by Hampshire library staff

Hampshire library staff were taking to the streets this Tuesday, as part of their continuing campaign against damaging cutbacks by the county council. 

Campaigners planned to leaflet the public and ask them to sign their petition, which already has over 10,000 signatories. 

The event is part of the Defend Hampshire Libraries Roadshow that the Unison union has organised in response to council cuts that have already meant the loss of 27 librarian posts and the downgrading of a further 17.

Students blocade Trident at Faslane

Students from Glasgow, Edinburgh, Stirling, Aberdeen, Rennes, Leeds, Liverpool, Newcastle, Manchester, Sussex, Nottingham, Sheffield, York, Warwick, Birmingham, Cambridge, Oxford, East London, Hull, and Kent universities blockaded the Trident nuclear weapons system base at Faslane on Friday of last week.

The Northern Access Road was blockaded fully for one hour, while the shore road and the construction gate roads of Coulport were also obstructed. Meanwhile, the South gate at Faslane was completely closed and the North gate was disrupted for 35 minutes. In total there were 37 arrests. 

Photos, participant reports and updates available at » 

Bus workers set to strike on Isle of Wight

RMT members are to strike at two bus companies which are part of the Go Ahead group. Southern Vectis bus workers on the Isle of Wight are set to strike for a week from Sunday over pay.

And 350 RMT members at Wilts and Dorset buses will strike over driving hours and imposed rosters from next week.

RMT members at Poole, Bournemouth, Blandford, Lymington, Ringwood and Swanage depots are set to strike from a minute after midnight on Tuesday 10 July and then on 16, 23 and 24 July. They voted 206 to 20 for action.

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Tue 3 Jul 2007, 18:28 BST
Issue No. 2058
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