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Reports round-up: Postal workers say ballot campaign was ‘impressive’

This article is over 1 years, 9 months old
News in brief from workers’ struggle, including Uber strikes, anti-academy school battles and outsourced security guard dispute
Issue 2814
Gate meeting

One of the over 1,000 membership and gate meetings organised by CWU members. (Picture: CWU)

Results of a national strike ballot by workers in Royal Mail are set to be announced imminently. Members of the CWU union are balloting after bosses imposed a 2 percent “increase”—well below inflation—on all their workers.

CWU activists told Socialist Worker they were confident about the ballot campaign. Mark Dolan, a CWU rep in north London, told Socialist Worker the campaign had been going “really well”. “Both the turnout and the yes vote will be high,” he said.

And Paul Garraway, a rep in Oxford, said, “I can’t see anyone voting no. We’ve had local workplace reps organising gate meetings themselves. I don’t think we’ve ever had as many gate meetings in a single day. It’s been really impressive.”

Union leaders were set to announce the results to activists at a briefing in York on Tuesday of this week—the day before a Royal Mail shareholders’ meeting in the same city.

Nick Clark

Workers sentence courts to series of pay walkouts

Outsourced security guards in the courts and tribunals service were set to strike on Friday of next week, and 2, 3 and 4 August.  The guards, who work for outsourcer OCS, are fighting for a raft of pay demands, including the real living wage.

One worker, a member of the PCS union, said, “I look after more than one court and 12 officers but only earn 52p above minimum wage for the extra responsibility.

“Also, to have a non-guaranteed bonus in place that can be taken away at the whim of a manager and does not form part of your basic pay is insulting. The continual expectation is of a 5-star service and excellence, but in return for the minimum wage.”

Civil servants prepare for strike ballot

Civil service workers in every government department are set to begin a national strike ballot in September over pay and pensions.

The workers’ PCS union’s demands include 10 percent pay rise and a minimum wage of at least £15 an hour.

The ballot is set to begin on 26 September and run for six weeks until 7 November.

Drapers fights restructuring

NEU memebers at Drapers’ Pyrgo Priory school in Romford, east London struck for three days last week. 

They are fighting a proposed restructure that would see some workers “losing £400 a month”. 

The majority of those on the picket line are lower paid support staff, and such a cut would made a huge difference to their lives. 

NEU district secretary for Havering, John Delaney said action would only stop if Drapers multi-academy trust withdrew the restructure and found a new way to make savings. 

Workers and campaigners must continue to build solidarity and support for the strike to push the academy bosses into retreat.

Lordswood battle on

Teachers and support staff at Lordswood Girls’ School and Sixth Form Centre in Birmingham walked out for three days last week with two more dates planned.

Pickets have been lively as the workers fight against the “forced transfer of employment of our teachers and support staff members to King Edward VI Academy Trust”.

The workers are also fighting back against unacceptable management practices. 

The NEU has offered to suspend all strikes only if the school agrees to stop the transfer and begin consultations with staff.

Uber workers drive home demands at HQ

Uber drivers were set to strike on Wednesday over poor pay, unfair dismissals and corruption flowing from the top of the company. 

The strike, by members of the ADCU union, coincides with a rally outside Uber’s offices in Aldgate Tower in east London. 

The action comes after thousands of documents were leaked revealing the levels of corruption and lobbying Uber has taken part in. 

Workers are demanding Uber pay them £2.50 a mile and comply with the Supreme Court ruling that found that drivers can’t be considered self-employed. 

They are also demanding that politicians stop collaborating with the company. 

  • Join the protest, 12 noon, Wed 20 July, Uber HQ, Aldgate Tower, E1 8FA 

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