Dated: 19 Jul 2008
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The pay revolt is on – and we have the power to win. That was the message sent out by some 650,000 council workers as they began two days of strike action on Wednesday this week.
British Telecom (BT) workers are growing increasingly angry with company plans to cut back on their pension schemes. The company announced at the end of May that it intends to start a statutory review of the schemes to ensure that they are "sustainable".
The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) in London is gearing up to oppose management plans to cut the wages of some firefighters by up to £2,400 a year.
The health boss who sacked union activist Karen Reissmann for speaking out against cuts and privatisation has herself resigned following a damning report into mental health services in Manchester.
Hundreds of Zimbabweans in Britain marched to parliament on Friday of last week, demanding the right to work while they are in exile. At the same time the government has gone ahead with moves that will allow it to deport "failed asylum seekers" back to Zimbabwe.
The postal workers’ CWU union has signalled its intention to fight against attacks on its activists by calling a demonstration in Bristol, where three workers have been unfairly sacked for alleged incidents during last year’s national dispute.
Some 140 workers in the Unite union struck at a plastic packaging manufacturers in Beccles, Suffolk on Tuesday and Wednesday of last week over a paltry pay offer.
Over 80 members of Unite struck for a fourth day on Monday of this week at
Over 200 Unison union members struck on Wednesday of last week in defence of their trade union and John McDermott, their Unison convenor, national executive and service group member.
Thousands of bus workers in London are gearing up for a summer of discontent after drivers at four of the major bus operators voted overwhelmingly to throw out their managements’ pay offers.
New Labour has announced that the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Bill, due to be debated and voted on in the Commons this week, will be delayed until the autumn.
Anti-Nazi activists in Stoke-on-Trent are stepping up their campaign against attempts by the fascist British National Party (BNP) to target the city and whip up race hatred.
Biofuels may turn out to be one of the biggest and most dangerous con tricks of the modern age. Holding out the promise of cutting greenhouse gases and dependence on fossil fuels, biofuels have instead driven up food prices, raked in profits for agribusiness and caused serious environmental damage.
Brent council went to the courts on Tuesday of this week to win an eviction order against anti academies protestors occupying Wembley Park recreation ground. The protestors have mounted a long running campaign and occupation of the sight of a new City Academy.
NHS protesters shame privateers The organisers of the North London Whittington Hospital’s annual oration were forced to allow protesters against privatisation into their talk last week.
The PCS civil service workers’ union is holding a week of action over public sector pay this week, involving thousands of its members. This will see action in coordination with Unison and Unite members striking on Wednesday and Thursday of this week.
School support staff in the Unison union and teachers in the NUT union at Hayward and Withins schools in Bolton struck on Tuesday of this week against plans to transfer their employment to an academy and the failure to consult them.
Rodillian High School Teachers in the NUT union at Rodillian High School in Leeds struck on Tuesday of this week against proposals to increase their teaching hours from 21 to 22 hours a week.
Members of the UCU lecturers’ union at Nottingham Trent University are angry at management’s announcement that they are giving three months notice to end the current recognition agreement.
Around 50,000 people attended this year’s Durham Miners’ Gala – the premier labour movement event in the north east of England – last Saturday. Many there were angry with the government.
A 24-hour strike by more than 1,000 Argos warehouse and distribution workers is set to hit the giant retail chain on Thursday this week. It will likely cause chaos as stores fail to receive their normal deliveries.
The battle for a military outpost in a forgotten corner of Afghanistan has vividly exposed the turmoil inside the Nato-led occupation of the country.
The war in Afghanistan is spiralling so dangerously out of control that it now threatens to engulf Pakistan, in a process that is being actively encouraged by Nato.
Several migrant workers who are fighting for decent pay and conditions on London Underground have been suspended by an employer.
Thousands of people took to the streets in Peru last week in a series of strikes and demonstrations against the free market policies of president Alan Garcia.
Some 4,500 oil workers at Brazil’s state-owned Petrobras defied a court injunction to start a five-day strike on Monday over pay and conditions.
Gordon Brown has caused controversy by saying that the British government will help Nigeria in West Africa to "tackle lawlessness" in the oil producing Niger Delta region.
There is an almighty struggle going on in Turkey. It is not a struggle easily recognisable as being between workers and bosses. There are no general strikes, no pickets, no scabs. In fact, the industrial struggle is at a low ebb.
Jimmy Ross – Glasgow socialist Many facts and statistics about Glasgow East have been bandied about over the last few weeks since the by-election was announced.
It seems that in the last week the entire political establishment has jumped on the issue of knife crime.
As part of its crackdown on crime and "bad behaviour", the government announced last week that it wants to extend teachers’ powers so they can search pupils for alcohol or drugs.
"The worst is over in the financial crisis or will be very soon." This is what Alan Greenspan, former head of the US central bank, said back in May.
The term "exploitation" typically conjures up images of horrendous working conditions, perhaps sweatshops in China or India, or the child labour used by Western clothes manufacturers. We think of people working long hours for little pay in terrible conditions ruthlessly bullied by unscrupulous bosses or gangmasters.
Since the beginning of Labour’s second term in 2001, a relatively un-noticed government campaign has pushed the deregulation of worker safety far further than Margaret Thatcher ever dared.
Inflation and recession are now tightening their grip on the economy with every day that passes. Working people face rapidly increasing prices, especially for food and fuel; government led pay restraint; rising unemployment and a disastrous housing crisis.
Deepening economic crisis is casting a shadow of fear and insecurity over millions of working people across the world.
‘Stand up for workers’ rights’ ‘I support any campaign along this line. Workers in the Bfawu bakers’ and food workers’ union, just like everyone else, are facing tough times.
Reports of the magnificent public sector srikes
Some of the lowest paid workers in Britain – from school dinner staff to classroom assistants and refuse workers, and other workers in local councils stopped work on Wednesday and Thursday of this week.
Gordon Brown’s government is determined to make working people pay for the economic crisis. His chancellor Alistair Darling declares,
Manchester The strike in Manchester shut down the central library and there were picket lines were on every entrance to the town hall.
Waltham Forest There was a decent early turnout of support for the Unison strike at Silverbirch House in Walthamstow, east London. Speaking to them it soon became clear why they had come out to protest at 7am.
Telford There was widespread support for the strike from the 2,200 Unison union members.
Rotherham Gordon Jelley from Rotherham local government Unison said, "It’s been very good here. We’ve shut over half the primary and secondary schools in Rotherham. There are no bin lorries moving and both bin depots have been shut.
In Newcastle the city council admitted refuse collection was "severely disrupted".
Cornwall Determined strikers picketed the entrances to New County Hall and Old County Hall, two major local government workplaces in Truro, from 7.30am.
Norwich There were pickets at City Hall, Country Hall, the library and other key workplaces. Pickets were pleased that some people who had planned to go in were turned around. At City Hall a post office delivery van was also turned back.
Newport In Newport there was a lively picket line outside the civic centre. "The laundry hasn’t been delivered, the crematorium’s shut down and we’ve closed 16 schools in the area," one striker told Socialist Worker.
The strike by the people who keep local services going every day continued into its second day in every town and city in England, Wales and Northern Ireland. Classroom assistants, refuse collectors, admin workers, street sweepers, and other grades stopped work again.
Report from the march through central London during the public sector workers’ strike, Wednesday 16 July 2008
This two-part conspiracy thriller written by Simon Beaufoy is set in the world of the oil industry, climate change, environmental activism and international politics.
Work And Dignity (Lavoro e Dignita) is the debut album from Italian band Ned Ludd and is now available in this country. It fuses radical politics with folk traditions and punk rock attitude.
The performance costumes of The Supremes, one of the most successful groups of all time, might not be seem a natural Socialist Worker review.
BBC4 is showing this Arena documentary about life as a London bus conductor as part of its London Transport season.
Edgar Degas’s 1873 painting In A Cafe: Absinthe is just one of over 100 impressionist masterpieces on show from this Saturday at the National Gallery Complex in Edinburgh.
Migrant workers make a huge contribution to life in Britain, keeping public services, industry and agriculture running. Yet they are generally depicted in the media as a burden on society – "undesirables" who clog up resources and hog public services.
Prisoners forced to run between lines of baton waving police and chant in praise of Italy’s former fascist dictator Benito Mussolini.
Demand for rented property is rising because far fewer people can afford to buy a house as a result of the credit crunch. Many homeowners are being forced to sell up because they cannot afford their mortgage. Growing numbers face repossession.
US presidential candidate Barack Obama arrives in London to meet Gordon Brown next week. It’s part of his tour of key US allies, including France, Germany, Israel and Jordan.
"Some of the people who work in schools, like dinner ladies and cleaners, are refusing to go to work. They are taking part in something called a strike, which is when a group of people refuse to go to work, because they think they should be paid more."Children’s BBC Newsround explains the strike