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Reports round-up: Glasgow equal pay campaign

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Issue 2587

Glasgow pay campaign

Low-paid women workers have been fighting for yeasr

Low-paid women workers have been fighting for yeasr (Pic: Glasgow Unison)

Low-paid women workers have been fighting for years to get Glasgow City Council to implement single status agreements.

The Unison and GMB union members are keeping the pressure on the SNP-led council which has dragged the dispute through the courts. A court of session rejected the council’s case, but they may take it to the Supreme Court.

A Unison rep told Socialist Worker they hope bosses will “choose to sit round the table with the unions and sort this out finally. The anger is incredible, and if they don’t resolve this there’s going to be demands for a strike ballot.”

Equal pay or we walk away demo Saturday 10 February, 11am, Glasgow Green G1 5DB

Protest in York

Over 50 protesters gathered outside York Magistrates’ Court on 11 January to support 30 anti-fracking protesters facing charges. Trial dates have been set for April and May.

The anti-frackers have been charged with various offenses following demonstrations against the new KM8 fracking well at Kirby Misperton.

Chris Fuller

Bradford children’s services at risk

Protests will take on Bradford council’s cuts to children’s services.

Bradford People’s Assembly has called a demonstration for 10 February to bring together families, activists, trade unions and others.

Bradford Council wants to axe nearly 500 jobs and move Prevention and Early Help to a “locality-based” system.

Stop the EDL’s fake ‘meet and greet’

The English Defence League (EDL) has called a regional demonstration in Hexthorpe, Doncaster, this Saturday. The Nazi group says its “meet and greet” will take place from 2pm.

Unite Against Fascism has called a counter-protest in the town from 11am. It is backed by Doncaster TUC.

The protest comes as the EDL faces further splits and crisis. North East EDL leader Alan Spence has been kicked out of the organisation.

The EDL Newcastle Division made a statement confirming there had been a vote of no confidence against Spence due to his “lack of leadership”.

Go to Unite Against Fascism on Facebook for more details

Workers walk out, bosses’ profits tank

Unite union members at Sutton Tankers in Cheshire were planning a continuous strike from Friday. They returned a 100 percent vote for strikes on a 97 percent turnout.

Bosses planned to sack over 30 workers this Friday and to re-employ them in February on worse contracts.

Engineers generate job loss resistance

Hundreds of workers at an engineering company are preparing to strike over job losses. The Unite union members voted by 93 percent on a 91 percent turnout to strike over plans to get rid of 300 jobs.

Bosses at Cummins Generator Technologies in Stamford made a revised offer following the vote.

Amazon bogus self employment victory

Workers for Amazon have won up to £20,000 in back pay after a legal challenge to their employment status.

UK Express, which Amazon uses to deliver its packages, was found to use bogus self-employment to avoid paying its workers sick pay, holiday pay and paid breaks.

The employer backed down before the legal challenge got to an employment tribunal.

School strike to stop academisation

NEU union members at The Village School in Brent, west London, began a two-day strike on Tuesday. Workers are fighting a plan to turn the school into an academy that would be part of a Multi Academy Trust.

Workers previously held a successful strike against the proposal in December. Resistance to academisation boosted the union’s membership from 32 in September to 125 before December’s strike.


A strike by firefighters at Sellafield nuclear reprocessing plant caused tailbacks and road closures in Cumbria last Thursday.

The GMB union members, who are are fighting against bosses’ pay offer of £4.30 more an hour, plan another walkout next Saturday. The firefighters rejected the offer last autumn and had planned two 24 hour walkouts, but they were suspended for talks.

Construction workers plan a series of walkouts as part of a separate dispute over the sacking of a shop steward. The Unite union members, who work for DSD Construction, are set to strike next Tuesday and on 1 and 7 February.

Labour’s limits in Haringey

Labour-run Haringey council’s outgoing right wing leadership has laid the basis for pushing through the Haringey Development Vehicle (HDV).

The £22 billion project with private developer Lendlease would see the demolition of seven estates in north London.

The Labour right lost a series of selection battles, choosing council candidates for local elections in May.

Now the right wants to tie the hands of incoming left wing councillors who won selection by opposing the HDV.

A motion calling on council leader Claire Kober not to sign any further HDV documents before the May elections was defeated by 24 votes to 22 last Tuesday. It shows that the fight against the HDV cannot be won through manoeuvres inside Labour.

The campaign must keep up the pressure to force the council to scrap the HDV.

Over 120 people discussed plans to redevelop large parts of Walthamstow town centre in north east London last week.

The redevelopment would take up a third of the town square and include only 20 percent “affordable” housing.

Future plans include occupying the square on

24 February, taking protests to the developers’ offices and doorknocking residents to raise awareness.

Sean Dewey and Claire Chandler

eighty electricians working on the Woolwich section of the Crossrail project in south east London struck last week. The Unite union members’ dispute centres on completion payments such as finishing bonuses.
Eighty electricians working on the Woolwich section of the Crossrail project in south east London struck last week. The Unite union members’ dispute centres on completion payments such as finishing bonuses. (Pic: Alan Kenny)

Defend Louise Harrison 

Protesters will gather in Doncaster, South Yorkshire, on Saturday 27 January to defend Louise Harrison and South Yorkshire Women’s Aid (SYWA).

Louise is a domestic violence worker and campaigner in the town. But her work contract may not be renewed. Louise has helped to lead campaigns to defend SYWA and other services in Doncaster.

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell has sent his “support and solidarity” to the campaign to defend Louise.

Protest Saturday 27 January, 12 noon, Mansion House, Doncaster

High stakes in cinema fight

Picturehouse cinema workers plan to strike for 13 days from Saturday as part of their long-running battle for the living wage.

The members of the Bectu arm of the Prospect union will strike across five sites in London.

It comes as the chain’s bosses step up their campaign against workers.

Managers at the Ritzy cinema in Brixton have announced the cinema will be closed for the entire period from Saturday until

1 February, not just during strike hours as before.

Workers are asking for their supporters in the trade union movement to raise strike funds.

They have already raised over £20,000.

Alistair Farrow

To donate to the strike fund go to


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