Socialist Worker

Reports round-up

Issue No. 2132

Strike looming at Newcastle airport

Around 120 baggage handlers, ramp staff and aircraft loaders at Newcastle Airport have voted almost unanimously in favour of strike action to defend jobs.

The workers, members of the Unite union, are employed by Servisair, and are worried that they will lose their jobs as the firm has dropped its contract with easyJet.

The work will be transferred to Gate Aviation in January, but there is uncertainty about whether their jobs will be secure.

Regional industrial organiser for Unite, Graham Eastwood, said, “The action could be imminent, however we don’t believe there will be any disruption over the Christmas period.”


College lecturers ballot over pay

Lecturers in 11 colleges have begun balloting for strike action over the failure of their managements to honour a pay deal agreed in 2004.

The colleges balloting are Nelson and Colne, Croydon, Greenwich, North West London, Dearne Valley, Doncaster, Rotherham, Evesham, Sandwell, Sussex Downs and Askham.

The 2004 national agreement was designed to provide pay parity between college lecturers and teachers.

Yet college management in several places is still refusing to honour the agreement.

The result of the ballot will be announced on 12 January and, if there is a yes vote, strike action will take place at the end of January.


Rail workers fight for jobs and planet

The RMT rail workers’ union has pledged that it will fight the job losses at the EWS rail freight company.

The Deutschebahn-owned company has announced plans to sack 530 workers.

The RMT has challenged EWS to confirm that there will be no compulsory job losses and that it will end the practice of employing people on zero-hours contracts.

RMT general secretary Bob Crow said, “The company’s plan to slash jobs amounts to a liberalised asset-stripping attack.

“This is in an industry that is essential for the long-term health of the economy and the environment, and we cannot stand by and watch it happen.”


Send cheques for Karen Reissmann

A legal fund has been launched for Karen Reissmann, the Manchester mental health nurse who was sacked for speaking out against privatisation.

Karen needs to raise over £10,000 to continue fighting her case against Manchester Mental Health Trust.

Donations to the fund should be made to Karen Reissmann Legal Defence Fund, Unity Trust Bank, sort code 08-60-01, account number 20215859, or sent to the fund’s treasurer, Kathy Crotty, 181 St Mary’s Road, Manchester M40 0BN.


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News
Mon 15 Dec 2008, 19:00 GMT
Issue No. 2132
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