Socialist Worker

Reports round-up: Durham teaching assistants stand against deal

Issue No. 2577

Durham teaching assistants protesting last year

Durham teaching assistants protesting last year (Pic: Socialist Worker)

Durham teaching assistants (TAs) who are unhappy with a new pay deal were set to hold a solidarity event on Thursday.

TAs in the Unison union, which represents the majority of the workforce, voted to accept the deal by 62 percent on a 54 percent turnout. The deal, cooked up between Unison and the Labour-run council, still sees 472 TAs lose pay.

Go to Facebook event Durham TA’S Stand In Solidarity for details

Choke up the chokers

Protesters were set to block roads in central London on Wednesday evening in an escalation of the Stop Killing Londoners campaign against air pollution.

Air pollution, largely from traffic, leads to almost 10,000 early deaths a year in London.

London mayor Sadiq Khan promised to tackle it, largely through charges for the worst polluting vehicles.

These are far from perfect—they penalise poorer drivers and let the rich carry on polluting.

Protesters want Khan to invest in pollution-free electric vehicles.

Go to Stop Killing Londoners on Facebook

Exeter porters stand firm

Porters deserve respect

Porters deserve respect (Pic: Unison South West)

Porters at the Royal Devon and Exeter hospital trust have struck against plans to change shifts from eight hours to 12 hours.

The Unison union members struck last Friday and on Monday. There will be a weekend-long strike soon if managers don’t back off.

Porters already walk an average of 12 miles a shift.

Their ballot saw a

100 percent turnout and a 96 percent vote for action.

Richard Bradbury

Sign the support petition at

Mears workers vote for further strikes

Mears housing maintenance workers in Manchester are preparing for “substantial” strikes next month.

The 180 Unite union members have voted to renew their dispute over pay differentials and terms and conditions. They struck for more than 40 days earlier this year.

The workers maintain over 12,000 council homes managed by Northwards Housing.

Defend activist from jail term

Peace protesters gathered at Cardiff Crown Court on Monday to give solidarity to Deirdre Murphy who faced a trial after direct action against the Cardiff arms fair.

She could face jail for her protest at the Defence Procurement, Research, Technology and Exportability event in the city.

Cleaners want to sweep away low pay

Cleaners at Manchester Airport have announced a series of nine strikes starting in November and running into December and January.

The Unite union members are demanding an extra £1 an hour from contractor Mitie. The first strike is a 24-hour walkout on Friday of next week.

Don’t let laws leave strike grounded

Engineers, firefighters and security guards at Heathrow Airport in the Unite union have all voted for action over pay and conditons

But security guards did so on a turnout of just under 50 percent.

The Tories’ anti-union laws mean they cannot officially strike.

Unite should call out the others—and security guards could come out unofficially.

Film workers to vote on major deal

members of the Bectu arm of the Prospect union are voting on a Motion Picture Agreement.

The deal will apply to union members working on films with budgets over £30 million.

It sets a 55-hour standard working week over five days among other terms.

Firefighters walk out at Sellafield

Some firefighters at the Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant struck for higher pay last Thursday.

They are GMB union members. A separate dispute over pay could see around 5,000 GMB and Unite union members strike together.

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