HUNDREDS OF workers at Sunderland University held a one-day strike last week against compulsory redundancies. Nine lecturers' jobs are under threat. 'Lecturers have worked against the odds to keep standards high and deliver good results for students,' said one Natfhe union member. 'But university management seems to regard cost-cutting as more important that the quality of education provision.'
TPL's presses stopped rolling
PRINT WORKERS have started a series of one-hour stoppages every week and an overtime ban on Monday at TPL Printers near Kidderminster. The GPMU union members are fighting for better pay and conditions after a 70 percent vote for action.
TPL Printers is owned by the giant multinational Times Publishing of Singapore. It forced the workers to take a pay cut and worse conditions two years ago. Now management are refusing to make any pay offer this year despite workers being due a rise in October.
Youth workers' old complaint
YOUTH WORKERS across Britain who are members of the Community and Youth Workers' Union (CYWU) are set to ballot for strikes over pay. They are against a 3 percent offer. They also oppose plans to introduce a new qualification, the equivalent of a GCSE, which New Labour seems to think is enough for staff involved in complex areas like child protection.
Doug Nicholls, general secretary of the CYWU, says, 'I have not seen the profession so concerned in my 25 years in youth work.' Maggie Foster, a CYWU member and neighbourhood youth worker for West Sussex council, says, 'Some young people who attend my youth club are earning more filling supermarket shelves than my part time staff.'
We don't want jobs vacuum
SOME 250 workers and their families demonstrated outside the Hoover factory in Cambuslang, near Glasgow, last Saturday against the plant's closure. The factory is under threat due to plans to transfer 260 jobs to Wales and China.
Amicus leader Danny Carrigan denounced Hoover's plans. Unfortunately he didn't offer a way forward, and suggested that there should be a battle with workers in Merthyr Tydfil to see who can grab work from each other!
Rubber workers bounce back
TGWU MEMBERS at Cannon Rubber in Tottenham, north London, are currently fighting for union recognition. The workforce is largely of Ghanaian or Turkish origin, and many people feel very intimidated and frightened. Union activists say the owner is opposed to the union.
Activists are calling for help with leafleting. Anyone who could spare an evening or early morning in the next ten days should phone 07980 721 440. The ballot papers are being sent to workers' homes on Monday of next week.