Socialist Worker

Reports round-up

Issue No. 2320

Melbourne sparks lift their blockade

Construction workers in Melbourne, Australia, lifted their blockade of a major building site after their boss asked for talks last week.

Members of the CFMEU union are fighting Grocon owner Daniel Grollo. He had refused to negotiate and tried to keep unions of his sites.

There have been daily mobilisations of up to 3,000 building workers at the site each morning and solidarity action at other sites.

Amnesty workers fight for rights

Workers at Amnesty International (UK) were set to strike on Wednesday of this week. The action is over management’s failure to meaningfully consult over redundancy proposals.

Workers backed the strike by 82.5 percent in a recent ballot. Rush messages of support to [email protected]

Firefighters’ strike put out for talks

The Essex firefighters’ strike planned for Wednesday of last week was called off. Their FBU union is now in talks with the employer.

It was to be the latest in a series of strikes by the FBU members, including a 24-hour strike and march in July. A strike during the Olympics last month was also cancelled.

Respect candidate stands down

Kate Hudson has stood down as Respect party candidate for the Manchester Central by-election, set to be held in November. She felt she could not continue after Respect MP George Galloway’s recent comments about rape.

“To continue as Respect Party candidate in this situation, no matter how much I object to and oppose his statements personally, would be in effect to condone what he has said,” Kate wrote. “That is something I am not prepared to do.”

Protest demands jobs not sanctions

The Unite union’s London community branch was set to protest on Wednesday of this week at the offices of the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP).

They oppose the increasing use of benefit sanctions, where the DWP stops someone’s benefits to punish them for “failing” to follow instructions—such as turning up a minute late to interview.

The Jobs Not Sanctions protest is on Wednesday 12 September, 9am at Caxton House, Tothill St, London SW1H 9NA

Rail cleaners’ strike demands living wage

Dozens of striking cleaners working for ISS on East Coast mainline and London Midland picketed King’s Cross station in central London on Monday of last week.

Workers in the RMT union struck for 24 hours as part of their campaign for a living wage. The strikers’ banner read, “Wages not peanuts”.

Sign up against Barnet’s easyCouncil

The One Barnet programme, known as “easyCouncil”, is set to be driven through by the Tory council on 6 December. It will hand a £1 billion contract to run services in the north London borough to a private company.

This is the first deal of its kind. Unison is asking Barnet residents to sign the petition against the plans. Go to, and

Poetry and comedy against extradition

A night of poetry and politics, “Extradite Me, I’m British”, saw 100 people gather in east London last Saturday. Moazzam Begg, AL Kennedy and Victoria Brittain were among those who spoke and read poetry.

Talha Ahsan and Babar Ahmad are fighting extradition to the US. Go to and

Stop Eddie Stobart sacking drivers

Nearly 200 drivers at a Tesco distribution centre in Doncaster, South Yorkshire are being balloted for strikes to save their jobs.

The drivers in the Unite union have been transferred to Eddie Stobart—which has issued them with notice of termination of employment. The ballot ends on Wednesday of this week.

Capita action off as bosses ‘stand down’

The Unite union has suspended industrial action planned at IT firm Capita, after bosses said they would “stand down” a programme of job losses and offshoring.

Bosses also say they will conclude negotiations over a new job security framework by the end of September.

Join conference on justice and austerity

The Defend the Right to Protest campaign will be holding a national conference on 14 October. The dozens of speakers include Jules Carey, the lawyer for Ian Tomlinson’s family, and student protester Alfie Meadows.

Alfie faces a retrial on 29 October for violent disorder. Go to

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Article information

Tue 11 Sep 2012, 15:58 BST
Issue No. 2320
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