Socialist Worker


Strike over Leeds Specialist Inclusive Learning Centres redundancies

02 July 2005
Over 100 staff at three special schools in Leeds struck over the threat of 17 full time redundancies in one of the new Specialist Inclusive Learning Centres last week.

ITV strikers channel their anger over pay

16 April 2005
Hundreds of media workers in the Bectu and Amicus unions struck between Friday and Sunday of last week at ITV. They are fighting for decent pay. Strikers picketed ITV offices in London, Manchester, Leeds, Liverpool, Norwich, Birmingham and Nottingham.

Media round-up

09 April 2005
ITV workers’ strike set to hit flagship programmes Members of the Bectu and Amicus unions at ITV were set to strike on Friday, Saturday and Sunday of this week in their pay dispute. The strike involves over 700 broadcasting, production and studio staff at ITV centres in London, Leeds, Manchester, Liverpool, Norwich, Nottingham and Birmingham.

Campaigns to defy college censorship

15 January 2005
HERE’S AN example of a curb on freedom of expression that none of the mainstream media have covered—attempts by the student union at Leeds University to ban the activities of pro-Palestinian activists.

‘Was it worth it? Ask the child who lost his family’

04 December 2004
Dr Salam Ismael, general secretary of Doctors for Iraqi Society, spoke to students at Leeds University about the siege of Fallujah, the media’s portrayal of the occupation and his work trying to save the lives of ordinary Iraqis.

Time for our own agenda in the NHS

31 July 2004
DARREN FROM Leeds writes, "NHS employees are being hit hard by New Labour initiatives. I work as a nursing assistant myself and, with the upcoming Agenda for Change, stand to lose a significant portion of my earnings.

Leeds schools

03 July 2004
EDUCATION workers across four unions in Leeds have voted for a one-day strike against compulsory redundancies of teachers and support staff.

Attack on democracy

26 June 2004
THE NATIONAL Union of Students (NUS) held an extraordinary conference in Leeds last week to discuss reform of its democratic structures. It was attended by just over 300 delegates-a large proportion of whom were full time sabbatical officers. The conference was called against the backdrop of a severe financial crisis. The NUS has an annual budget deficit of £500,000.

Wildcat civil servants

01 May 2004
OVER 1,000 workers in Scotland and Lancashire walked out unofficially last week in response to management's suspension of PCS civil servants' union activists. Management also suspended four PCS members in Leeds on Monday of this week. Some 500 workers in two offices, Hume House and Park place, walked out. Eight offices in East London walked out unofficially on Tuesday of this week after managment suspended Nigel Prendergast, a union activist in Hackney. These activists refused to carry out staff appraisals under the Performance Development Scheme.

Pickets plus politics produces popularity

17 April 2004
MANY SOCIALIST Worker sellers went to striking civil servants' picket lines this week. In Leeds they went to the Eastgate job centre on Tuesday. Sadie reports, \"The pickets were all very friendly. Two of them bought the paper. We had a good discussion with a range of political views. One picket said he thought Respect could give civil service workers a new confidence to take on Labour. Another said he agreed with Respect but was sad that Labour Party members had not been able to change the party from within. All the pickets were grateful we had come to show our support. In the run-up to the strike we sold five papers at Quarry House office.\"


13 March 2004
ACTION BY university lecturers over pay continues with growing pressure by the membership on the executive of the AUT union to step up the action. At Leeds, weekly strike committee meetings are attracting 20 or so departmental reps, and the feedback from departments is tremendous.

New dates set for civil servants' action

06 March 2004
ACTIVISTS IN the civil servants' PCS union were set to meet in Leeds this Saturday to discuss their crucial battle with the government over poverty pay. Some 92,000 workers in benefits offices, job centres, pension centres and Child Support Agency centres shocked bosses when they struck magnificently for two days last month.

Skirmish in Leeds

28 February 2004
THE ARMY spent two days on Leeds University campus leafleting for a presentation on the Officer Training Corps at Sandhurst barracks. Sandhurst is where they train the future battalion bosses to lead the privates to possible death or to commit war crimes. We organised an intervention at this presentation. First came a testosterone-fuelled video showing of Be The Best, interspersed with two wooden corporals losing their lines and composure.

Tom Hurndall

21 February 2004
OVER 70 people attended a conference on the "war on terror" last Sunday, hosted by Leeds Coalition Against the War.


07 February 2004
REPRESENTATIVES from NUT teachers' union associations met in Leeds on Saturday to discuss how to build the campaign to elect Ian Murch as general secretary of the NUT. Doug McAvoy, who has been general secretary for the last 15 years, is due to retire in June. The NUT has been painted as part of the awkward squad over the last year.

Are left wing union leaders too awkward for New Labour?

04 October 2003
IN 1998 a relatively unknown train driver from Leeds, Mick Rix, won the general secretary election in Aslef. He was the first in a series of new left wing trade union leaders now known as the "awkward squad". Their election signalled a wider radicalisation taking place inside Britain's trade union movement.


04 October 2003
AROUND 350 people crammed into a meeting at Leeds University on Thursday of last week to hear Labour MP George Galloway, Kate Hudson of CND and Anas Al-Tikriti of the Muslim Association of Great Britain.

Hydro Aluminium Motorcast

27 September 2003
HYDRO ALUMINIUM Motorcast announced last week that it intends to close its Leeds factory. This will mean a loss of over 600 jobs over the next 15 months. The Amicus shop stewards have told the workforce at the factory that they intend to fight these proposals by whatever means necessary. The workforce has given us 100 percent support.

Two-way process

27 September 2003
WE WANT Socialist Worker to be part of every strike and every campaign. Socialist Worker sellers in Leeds told me about meeting a worker from the Hydro Aluminium Motorcast factory:


26 July 2003
LEEDS TEACHERS called off a strike at the last minute last week after education managers conceded to their demands. Paula Champion, who was set to strike, celebrates.

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