Socialist Worker

Hackney council

by Rusty Ebrahim
Issue No. 1833

A MAJOR public meeting is planed to support the 'Anti-racist Three'-Unison union branch officers in Hackney, east London, who have been suspended by their council management. The attack by the New Labour council has set up a very important battle over racism and union rights.

The three-Unison joint branch secretaries Brian Debus and Will Leng, and the Equalities Officer John Page-could face dismissal. They are alleged to have submitted a draft report which was critical of the council's record over racism. The threatened disciplinary action is a challenge to the whole of the trade union movement, as well as undermining the right to challenge racism.

Council workers are meeting on 16 January to discuss how to fight back. The public meeting, on Monday 20 January will feature Unison officials, anti-racists and local activists.

Somali activists involved in recent protests after a racist attack in the area are organising to attend the meeting. The attack on the three comes at a time when management plan to start a scabbing operation to break the Hackney library workers' Saturday strikes.

For over a year the library workers have been striking on Saturdays in protest at the withdrawal of payments for working on that day. Now the council hopes to reopen some of the libraries using specially recruited staff.

Join the pickets this Saturday from 8am at the Technology and Learning Centre, Shoreditch Library, Hoxton High Street and Stoke Newington Library.

Send messages of support for the local branch to Unison, 2 Hillman Street, London E8 1DY. E-mail or fax 020 8985 6749. Public meeting-Monday 20 January, 7.30pm, Bullion Rooms, Wilton Way (behind Hackney Empire).

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Article information

Sat 11 Jan 2003, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 1833
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