Jobcentre talks with PCS continue
Two weeks of “intensive talks” continue between the PCS civil service workers’ union and Jobcentre Plus management.
They are attempting to resolve the dispute over working conditions in call centres.
The civil service-wide ballot for industrial action over attacks on redundancy terms means any strike may now be delayed until that ballot is completed.
However, the delay will allow the PCS to complete the programme of members’ meetings it has been holding in call and contact centres across the Department of Work and Pensions.
This should allow the union to involve far more than the 5,000 members originally envisaged by some in any action that takes place.
Dave Owens, PCS DWP group executive (personal capacity)
NUT union elects Kevin Courtney
Teachers have elected Kevin Courtney as deputy general secretary of the NUT union.
Kevin was backed by the Socialist Teachers Alliance, which includes the Socialist Workers Party.
“I stood as a campaigner and that’s the role I hope to be able to play,” Kevin said after the result.
“We all know that the aftermath of the general election is going to bring enormous challenges. It is absolutely clear that the work must start now to build the campaigns we need.
“This will mean working with other unions that want to resist attacks on our pay, pensions and conditions.”
Care workers occupy for pay
Workers at a Coventry private care home, which is closing down, sat in on Friday of last week demanding that they were paid the wages owed to them.
Five workers at Links Home in Radford occupied from 9.30am to 6.30pm.
Maj, one of the occupiers, told Socialist Worker, “Our money should have been in our accounts on that day, but there was no sign of it.
“The manager said it would be paid, but we wanted to see it. We were going to be out of our jobs and out of pocket.
“The residents are being moved out of the home. None of this should be happening.”
After the sit-in the manager paid a number of the
workers—but the fight to get wages for the rest continues.
Liverpool march against cuts
Around 300 trade unionists from the PCS, GMB, CWU and Unite unions marched through Liverpool last Saturday.
They were opposing cutbacks in public services promised by all three main parties.
Speakers talked about the need for unity and how workers should not pay for the bail out of the bankers.
But criticism of Labour was limited to, “Labour could have been a bit better and they have been a bit better recently.”