UNISONActive is an unofficial blog produced by UNISON activists for UNISON activists. Bringing news, briefings and events from a progressive left perspective.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Labour MPs TU Group Bulletin for week ending 22 Oct

The weekly Parliamentary Bulletin is produced by the Trade Union Group of Labour MPs and sponsored by Thompsons Solicitors. It aims to keep trade unionists aware of issues which are taking place in Parliament. This week's coverage includes Royal Mail Industrial Action, Post Offices, 21st Century Schools White Paper and Transport. You need to register here for the bulletins.

ETUC slams Commission moves on the de-regulation track‏

Further to UNISONActive’s report on Tory de-regulation plans and the outrageous decision by the unelected Business Minister Lord Mandelson to renege on implementation of the CBI/TUC agency workers agreement, the ETUC has expressed concern at similar moves by the European Commission for a ‘bonfire of regulations’.

Friday, 23 October 2009

Irish Public Sector Union IMPACT members vote overwhelmingly for strike action

At the second time of asking, Ireland voted 2:1 in favour of the Lisbon Treaty, with the Irish Congress of Trade Unions and its major affiliates recommending a YES vote, favouring the employment protections afforded by the Charter of Fundamental Rights. The UK government exercises an opt out on central issues.

Political Fund response: Northern 'can do' approach to challenges - Educate, Agitate, Organise

Northern Region today hosted day one of a two day policy conference attracting over 140 activists from all over the region. Refreshingly this was a policy conference with a difference. There were no motions, amendments,composites or Standing orders reports in sight The focus at this meeting is not on political philosophies or political point scoring. Its agenda was grounded in the concrete. Plus Jane Carolan's keynote speech

Employers offer rejected by Leeds strikers‏

UNISON website is reporting that ‘refuse workers have voted to reject Leeds City Council’s latest pay offer after being set hiked-up bin collection speed targets’.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

UNISONActive ANALYSIS - DCLG has issued standard statistics for the LGPS in England and Wales

The DCLG has issued standard statistics for the LGPS in England and Wales.http://www.communities.gov.uk/localgovernment/localregional/localgovernmentfinance/statistics/pensionscheme/ These show the following on income and expenditure. UNISONActive provides a commentary and analysis under each heading.

Royal Mail: urge the government to intervene‏

Over the next couple of days postal workers will be on strike. They are striking because Royal Mail have left them with no choice. Management intransigence in the face of a simple union request - talks at the conciliation service ACAS - means the workforce had no option. Click and show your support.

Emergency Picket of the US Embassy - End All Support to the Dictatorship in Honduras, November 4, 5.30-7.30pm‏

End the coup in Honduras! End all US economic, political and military support to the dictatorshipin Honduras now! Defend human rights in Honduras! No election without the restitution of Zelaya! Wednesday November 4, 5.30-7.30pm US Embassy, 24 Grosvenor Square, London, W1A 1A. (For a map click here)

Faced with such an attack, it would be folly not to strike

Seumas Milne on the CWU strike in The Guardian‏. http://m.guardian.co.uk/?id=102202&story=http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2009/oct/21/postal-strike-attack-on-workers

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Banking bonuses - UNISON response

Dave Prentis, UNISON General Secretary, has slammed the announcement that banking bonuses are set to increase by 50% in 2009 as a 'disgrace' while the taxpayers are paying the price again with job losses, pay freezes and public service cuts".

Prentis calls on UNISON branches to support CWU‏

Message from Dave Prentis: I have today written to Billy Hayes, general secretary of the Communications Workers Union, reiterating UNISON's full support for the strike action on Thursday and Friday 22/23 October. http://www.unison.org.uk/efocus/special08.asp

Treasury reassures City: you won't have to pay for deficit‏

Alistair Darling appears to have ruled out a Windfall tax on bank bonuses although he might consider a "super tax" on very high levels of income. While politically potent, that might not generate any extra revenues, says the FT http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/1db0bd8e-bcf3-11de-a7ec-00144feab49a.html

Welsh Labour Leadership Contest

UNISON Labour link will be fully behind Carwyn Jones the Counsel General and UNISON member in the forthcoming leadership election. Carwyn addressed the Regional Policy Weekend on Sunday and committed to policies which were UNISON driven and public sector friendly.

UNISON police staff conference - outsourcing threat intensifies‏

I returned home from the UNISON Police Staff Service Group Conference last Saturday with very mixed emotions. On the one hand I felt angry, worried and dismayed that our Government could be proposing that the future of our police service should be left to outsourcing, shared services and collaboration.

UNISON Political Fund Review – Increasing accountability and participation (Q15 – Q17)‏

The consultation for the review of the political fund effectiveness is underway. Branches and other union bodies are being asked to feed in views by Friday 13 November. Here we introduce a section of the consultation document and invite UNISONActive readers' views for publication.

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Labour leader killed in suicidal attack in Peshawar‏

By: Farooq Tariq: A prominent labour leader Master Khudad Khan was killed in suicidal attack in Peshawar on 15 October. He was on his way for a meeting and was passing by an intelligence center when a religious fanatic blew himself killing him and several others on the spot.

Tune in at 10.0am to SAfm Wednesday

Tune in at 10.0am to SAfm on Wednesday morning on 106.6 for “Workers on Wednesday” Where we will discuss “Workers’ international solidarity”. Studio guests will include....

Soundings Credit Crunch Seminar

LW Books have just put online several of the papers from their May 2009 Soundings seminar (co-organised with the OU) on the credit crunch. Contributors are: John Clarke, John Harris, Neal Lawson, Gavin Poynter, John Urry, Michael Rustin, Sylvia Walby

Shift Happens‏

Roger McKenzie, UNISON regional secretary West Midlands, blogs real time from a UNISON regional managers event in Croyde Bay. http://rogermckenzie.blogspot.com/2009/10/shift-happens.html

TUC condemns IOD push for raising of state pension to 70

Brendan Barber TUC General Secretary has condemned proposals by bosses organisation IOD for the state pension age to be raised by five years to 70.

Monday, 19 October 2009

SFoP welcomes Goldstone Report

SFoP Press Release: Scottish Friends of Palestine welcomes the decision by the UN Human Rights Council to endorse the Goldstone Report on the savage Israeli onslaught on Gaza. While the endorsement could and should have been stronger, it is none the less welcome. Most unwelcome is the contribution from Britain which did not even exercise her vote.

Essex: union facility time under attack‏.

The Tories and the Taxdodgers' sorry Taxpayers' Alliance have signalled an attack on trade union rights in Essex following UNISONActive's exclusive on the Telegraph sending out FoI requests on time-off to all English Councils. Branches need to assert their rights under the ACAS codes and make their views known to councils about their right to be consulted.

UNISON Political Fund Review – Enabling informed choice (Q13 – Q14)

The consultation for the review of the political fund effectiveness is underway. Branches and other union bodies are being asked to feed in views by Friday 13 November. Here we introduce a section of the consultation document and invite UNISONActive readers' views for publication.

Support the Post Workers

Yet again public sector workers are being put in a position where a ruthless management culture is trying to force through changes without consultation and without any willingness to negotiate. The union members are left with no option but to ballot for strike action and then management and the media accuse them of being militant and being unwilling to recognize the need for ‘modernisation’.

AFGHANISTAN – Bring the troops home‏

All roads lead to London on Saturday for a national protest called by STWC, CND & BMI.
The march will be lead by anti-war military families & soldiers

Regional Council meets in far flung Penrith‏

With no respect for UNISON's green agenda Regional Council met yesterday (Saturday 17 October) in the Rheged Centre near Penrith.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Mass mobilisation against closure of state electricity company in Mexico

More than 350,000 people flooded the streets of Mexico City on Thursday to protest against the closure of the state electricity company Luz y Fuerza. http://www.morningstaronline.co.uk/index.php/news/world/Power-firm-axe-sparks-protests

Leeds bin strikers show the way forward, says Mirror‏

http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/top-stories/2009/10/16/binmen-show-how-to-take-out-the-tory-trash-115875-21750993/ Binmen show how to take out the Tory trash By Paul Routledge 16/10/2009 In one city, in one council, in one department, workers have halted thepolitical juggernaut mowing down wages and jobs. And if they can do it... After six weeks of strike, the binmen of Leeds areon the brink of historic success in their fight to maintain terms and conditions of employment.