Socialist Worker

Reports round-up

Issue No. 2655

Thousands marched in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, for the With Banners Held High event  on Saturday. This year’s event compared Britain today with the inter-war years

Thousands marched in Wakefield, West Yorkshire, for the With Banners Held High event on Saturday. This year’s event compared Britain today with the inter-war years (Pic: Neil Terry)

No fusion at Sellafield

About 180 workers at the Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant in Cumbria began a ten-day strike over pay on Sunday.

Security guards, catering staff and cleaners employed by outsourcing firm Mitie struck earlier this month.

The Unite union said workers had rejected a pay offer of £8.21 an hour.

A Mitie spokesperson said management would not negotiate with the Unite union because the GMB was “the only recognised union”.

They added that the GMB had accepted the deal.

Unite regional officer Ryan Armstrong said, “Unite is now upping the ante and putting further pressure on Mitie to end poverty pay at Sellafield.

“The strike action is having a huge effect.”

Anger over pay grows

Firefighters in the FBU union have voted to prepare for industrial action in a long-running dispute over pay.

Fire brigade bosses have forced new duties onto the role of firefighters, but have kept pay rises below inflation—effectively pay cuts.

After a debate at the FBU conference last week, the union said firefighters could threaten to withdraw from non-contractual duties such as rescues in or near water.

Around 70 delegates at the conference came to a Stand Up To Racism fringe meeting. Speakers included Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary.

Fighting NHS outsourcing

Around 40 health campaigners protested at the High Court in London on Thursday of last week.

Circle Healthcare had launched a fresh legal challenge in an effort to hold on to the £320 million contract to run Nottingham University Hospitals’ treatment centre.

The Rushcliffe Clinical Commissioning Group said that the contract, which is currently held by Circle, should now be returned in house.

It’s right to take the contract from the outsourcers.

  • Health workers in Bradford, West Yorkshire, are preparing to take on bosses’ backdoor privatisation plan.

The Unison union is holding a ballot for strikes at the Royal Bradford Hospital over plans to outsource jobs to a “wholly-owned subsidiary”.

Workers should vote for strikes in the ballot, which ends on 3 June.

Teachers’ strike at Harbinger

NEU union members at Harbinger primary school in Tower Hamlets, east London, began a three-day strike on Tuesday.

Workers are in dispute over alleged unreasonable behaviour and bullying from the head teacher at the school.

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Plastic workers walk to defend rep

Plastic manufacturers struck from Monday this week over a union reps unfair sacking.

Some 36 workers at Colloids Limited plant in Kirkby, Liverpool, walked out over the treatment of Unite union rep George Gore, who was dismissed 8 February.

Bosses claimed George had breached health and safety rules. Strikers are planning to stay out until he is reinstated.

Manx strikers back to work after deal

Postal workers on the Isle of Man have ended their dispute over pay, pensions and conditions.

Some 200 members of the CWU union working for Isle of Man Post Office struck five days earlier this year. They have voted by 89 percent to accept a two year pay deal backdated to April, as well as protections for voluntary redundancy packages.

Pay dispute to shatter the bosses

Workers at a glass and bottle manufacturer are set to begin a series of strikes over pay.

Over 400 Unite members are Encirc in Elton, Cheshire are due to stage a three-day walkout from 12 June. They are then set to strike 19-22 and 26-29 June and 3-6 July.

Andrew Johnson, Unite regional officer said “Our members are determined to secure a fair pay increase.”

Blood bikers can deliver strikes too

Delivery riders for The Doctor’s Laboratory medical courier service were set to strike for 48 hours from 8am on Thursday this week. They are demanding pay rises after years of stagnating pay and cuts.

The workers are members of the IWGB union. Their pay was cut in 2015 and 2017—by 15 and 30 percent—they are asking for rises to offset those cuts.

The Doctor’s Laboratory has also attempted to bring in new contracts which would result in further cuts to pay.

Sealing the deal on a better pay offer

Workers at a sealing company in Bridgwater, Somerset, are set to strike for three days over pay.

Some 65 members of the Unite union are planning to walk out on 28 and 31 May and 5 June, in a series of one?day strikes.

They are taking action after overwhelmingly rejecting a 2.8 percent pay offer. Workers at Trelleborg Sealing Solutions say that production has “gone through the roof”.

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