Socialist Worker


Hackney Council

08 March 2003
THE CAMPAIGN against racism and the victimisation of union stewards in Hackney, east London, received a boost on Tuesday of last week. Hackney council has lifted the suspensions of two of the three Unison union stewards.


08 March 2003
CONTROL STAFF in the London Fire Brigade have voted unanimously to ballot for a work to rule and strike action over congestion charges. An angry mass meeting last Sunday left GMB and Unison union officials in no doubt of the strength of feeling. A claim was submitted for compensation for congestion charges over a year ago.

Local activists against the war

08 March 2003
Around 120 staff and students came to an anti-war meeting on one site of London's Metropolitan University on Friday. The speakers included Tariq Ali, Paul Mackney, leader of the Natfhe lecturers' union, and Jean Geldhart, a local Unison branch secretary.

Outrage is sweeping the unions

08 March 2003
SUPPORT HAS been growing for the campaign to reinstate two leading activists, Candy Udwin and Dave Carr, to the Unison union. The recent expulsion of Candy and Dave has created shockwaves within Unison and beyond.

We need these two fighters

01 March 2003
I WAS shocked and very angry last week on hearing that Candy Udwin and Dave Carr had been expelled from the Unison union for actively opposing PFI. We all thought the witch-hunt against leading left activists had drawn to a close, and that the worst they would face was a period of suspension.

Their only 'crime' was to defend NHS

22 February 2003
TWO LEADING campaigners for the health service, Candy Udwin and Dave Carr, have been unjustly expelled from the Unison union. It is one of the most shameful episodes in the history of Unison. It is the final act of a political witch-hunt that was waged by a section of the Unison bureaucracy. This witch-hunt began with the election of New Labour in 1997.

Unison expulsion outrage

15 February 2003
ACTIVISTS IN Unison have been shocked by the decision of a disciplinary appeals panel to expel Candy Udwin, London Region deputy convenor and University College London Hospital (UCLH) branch secretary, and Dave Carr, UCLH branch chair, from union membership.

A lesson in not weighting

08 February 2003
UNIVERSITIES and higher education colleges across London were closed on Tuesday as lecturers and admin and manual workers continued their campaign for a decent London weighting payment. The unions involved-Natfhe, AUT, Amicus and Unison-are claiming a London weighting payment of £4,000.

Health workers

01 February 2003
AN IMPORTANT meeting for all health workers is set to take place in Birmingham this weekend. Every worker in the health service should try to come, whether you're a porter or a nurse, a cleaner or a receptionist, work in a hospital or in the community, are in Unison, GMB, Amicus or any other health union.

Health service

25 January 2003
THE executive of the health sector of public sector union Unison delivered a surprising blow to the government's attempt to drive through a rotten three-year pay deal for NHS staff. The government wants all health workers to accept a three year 10 percent pay deal, worth just 3.2 percent a year.

Hackney council

11 January 2003
A MAJOR public meeting is planed to support the "Anti-racist Three"-Unison union branch officers in Hackney, east London, who have been suspended by their council management. The attack by the New Labour council has set up a very important battle over racism and union rights.

Hackney council

04 January 2003
URGENT SUPPORT is needed for three branch officers of the Unison union in Hackney, east London, who have been suspended by council management. The disciplinary action raises crucial questions for the union movement about racism and union rights.

Hackney council

21 December 2002
LABOUR-RUN Hackney council has suspended three key union activists who all face dismissal for alleged gross misconduct. They are Unison joint branch secretaries Brian Debus and Will Leng plus equalities officer John Page.

Unity can end low weighting

23 November 2002
THE FIRST joint strike in higher education in the London area was held on Thursday of last week. Two unions, the AUT and Natfhe, represent lecturers in the old universities and the "new" universities (ex polytechnics). They joined with members of two other unions representing support staff, Unison and Amicus, to strike for an increase in the London weighting allowance. The demand is for £4,000 a year.

College workers

16 November 2002
THERE WAS a highly successful strike of lecturers in the Natfhe and ATL unions, and college workers in the Unison union across England and Wales on Tuesday of last week. Socialist Worker received reports from a number of colleges that we couldn't fit in last week:

Union with the unions?

16 November 2002
THOUSANDS OF trade unionists came to the European Social Forum. Their numbers reflected the rise in workers' struggle in much of Europe. There were members of many British unions present, including the CWU, RMT, Amicus, Unison, PCS, NUJ, Natfhe, Prospect, NUT and TGWU. There were more than 2,000 people at just one of the meetings on trade union struggles.

Council Workers

16 November 2002
STREET CLEANERS were on the picket lines at Ley Street depot in Redbridge, east London, last week. The Unison union members are part of the Londonwide campaign for £4,000 London weighting for council workers. Steve Wheeler, a street orderly on Wanstead High Street, said, "We had a pay cut ten years ago. People are fed up living hand to mouth. We are fed up working seven days a week for this money. It's wrong for the government to give themselves a 40 percent pay rise when they don't give it to the rest of us."

Public Sector Alliance

09 November 2002
STRIKING RAIL workers on Arriva Trains Northern led an 800-strong march in Newcastle on Saturday called by the Public Sector Alliance. Other delegations included firefighters, postal workers (with a significant delegation from Oxfordshire), GMB and Unison union members, further education college lecturers, university lecturers, anti-war activists and others.

Refuse workers

02 November 2002
WORKERS AT Resourcesaver in Bristol took strike action last Wednesday over management reneging on a deal to cut working hours. Resourcesaver is responsible for collecting black boxes for recycling. Doug Varney from the workers' of the Unison union branch explained, "Management had agreed to cut the working week to 40 hours - that's five eight-hour days. Now management have imposed a standard nine-hour day.

NHS action is getting results

02 November 2002
SOME 500 cleaners, porters and telephonists in Swansea were to vote this week on an improved offer from their private bosses, ISS Mediclean. Some workers are angry at their Unison union officials for calling off a planned week-long strike. More could have been won, but the Swansea workers have shown that action is getting results in the health service.

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