Category Archives: Meeting/Conference

September Barnet Trades Union Council

At our first meeting back from Summer, we are glad to have a guest speaker. As Barnet Tories threaten to issue a completely anti-democratic ban on groups and individuals who support Palestinian rights from public buildings in the borough, we will be hosting Ben Jamal, the director of the Palestine Solidarity Campaign, to talk about the massive attack on Palestinians and solidarity with them.

Agenda:
1 Attendance and apologies
2 Review minutes of previous meeting
3 Matters Arising from the Minutes
4 Ben Jamal from Palestine Solidarity Campaign
5 The crisis of Childrens’ and other services in Barnet

Facebook event here.

Labour Assembly Against Austerity

National conference with: Diane Abbott MP // Jon Trickett MP // Richard Burgon MP // Maya Goodfellow, writer & commentator // Chris Williamson MP // Cllr Alice Perry, Labour NEC member // Dan Carden MP // Seema Chandwani, Labour CAC member // Grace Blakeley, economist & writer // Professor Duncan Bowie, housing expert // Sian Errington, Labour Assembly Against Austerity // Roger McKenzie, UNISON Assistant General Secretary and more special guests to be confirmed

Book here.

STAND WITH CORBYN – UNITE TO END TORY AUSTERITY
A Labour Assembly Against Austerity Conference
Saturday October 27, 10.00 – 17.00, Student Central, Malet Street, London, WC1E

Confronting racism & fascism: international conference

An international conference to discuss how we can confront the rise of racism and fascism.

Themes and speakers include:
Donald Trump to Tommy Robinson: Halting the growth of the racist right • Opposing Islamophobia & Antisemitism • Windrush – Combating the Hostile Environment • Grenfell – unite against austerity and racism • Refugees Welcome Here

We will soon be announcing initial speakers including anti-racists and anti-fascists campaigners from the US, France, Germany, Austria, Poland, Hungary, Greece, Spain and Italy.

Speakers last year included:
Diane Abbott MP, Shadow Home Secretary • Kate Osamor MP, Shadow DfID Secretary • Lowkey, Rapper • Esa Charles, Father of Rashan Charles • Imam Mohammed Mahmoud, Finsbury Park Mosque • Kevin Courtney, NEU Joint Gen Sec • Dave Ward, CWU Gen Sec • Roger Mckenzie, Unison Ass Gen Sec • Catherine West, Labour MP Hornsey and Wood Green

The racist right are on the march. Trumps election has emboldened the racist and fascist right across Europe.

Far right groups are achieving electoral successes from Italy to Hungary. For the first time in years racists are marching in big numbers on the streets of Britain.

The racist and fascist right are growing off the back of the scapegoating of migrants, refugees and the Muslim Community by mainstream politicians and the media.

Islamophobia has been at the centre of their growth but where the racist right grow racism and Anti-Semitism also soon follow.

Refugees are still drowning in their hundreds in the Mediterranean while fleeing poverty and war.

‘Fortress Europe’ and the reality of the ‘hostile environment’ for migrants is opening up an audience for the racist right to grow.

Institutional racism and austerity blights the lives of black communities in housing, education and in the continuing tragedies of deaths in police custody.

We need to discuss strategies for anti-racism in opposing mobilisations of the far right in the streets, the “hostile environment”, Islamphobia, anti-Semitism and institutional racism.

However we can fight this racist offensive. Jeremy Corbyn, Diane Abbott and John McDonnell represent an anti-racist and anti-austerity leadership of the Labour Party. There are many other progressive forces including trade unions, faith communities and other political parties, that are mobilising against racism.

The far right may be mobilising but we have the strength of the labour, trade union and anti-racist movement to oppose them.

We must discuss how we build on this strength to halt the rise of the racists.

RALLY! Tories Out Now – Time for a Corbyn Government for the Many not the Few


On the evening of Friday July 27 please join us, John McDonnell, Diane Abbott, Richard Burgon, Marsha De Cordova, Maya Goodfellow, Sean McGovern (Unite Disabled Members Committee,) and other special guests to loudly say this failing and chaotic Tory government has to go!

Please also help us spread the word the rally by RSVPing, sharing and inviting friends on Facebook here.

This rally will open the Arise festival and takes place at Student Central, Malet St, London WC1E 7HY from 7.00pm (registration 6.30pm.) Please note that if you already have a weekend ticket, you are automatically registered for the rally. We hope you can join us at the rally and if possible at all of Arise for a weekend of people powered politics, internationalism and solidarity.

You can get your tickets for the rally only, the whole Arise event or the Saturday only here.

Report from A New Lucas Plan Workshop

Attendees at the Trades Council conference workshop hosted by The New Lucas Plan group heard introductions from John Routley former Lucas Shop Stewards Combine and Steve Schofield researcher for Lessnet (The Local Economic Sustainability and Security Network) and author of Oceans of Work: Arms Conversion revisited. Discussion centred on the original Lucas plan and its relevance for today. By the end there was agreement that with long term planning and investment, particularly in High-Tec growth areas like wind and marine energy, the creation of alternative, sustainable, socially-useful, high skill, high value employment was possible and desirable but only achievable by a Government prepared to invest time, money, with sustained political will and a Labour Leadership that reflects our values-as we now have!

However, success was only possible if there was engagement with defence workers and their Unions and representatives at the very start and heart of the process. They are the ones to identify their needs, capacity and to initiate ideas for the drawing up of practical arms conversion plans whilst protecting skilled employment and pay levels, in the same way that Lucas Aerospace workers did over 40 years ago. It was felt given the sensitivities around this issue Trades Union Council’s, based in their local communities, were well placed to initiate, and develop those discussions locally.

You can see John and Steve’s introductory workshop speeches on https://www.facebook.com/greatermanchester.cnd/videos/804404266416772/.

Following on the film THE PLAN – that came from the bottom up tells the story of those pioneering Lucas workers and the ideas that were the motivation for the Arms Conversion/Defence Diversification motion passed at the TUC Congress in 2017.

Frances O’Grady has written this about the film “Throughout the union movement’s 150-year history, our cause has been to make working lives better. But there are times when we have gone further, we have challenged the very nature and the purpose of the work that we do. The Lucas Plan was created during one of those times. It holds out hope that production can be transformed to create a fairer, greener world. And it is testimony to the wealth of genius to be found on the shop floor. This will be a must-see film for every trade unionist – please support it.”. You can do so by donating through crowdfunding using this link https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-plan-community/x/11054043#/ or get more information via http://www.theplandocumentary.com

Of course, a key means in developing any industrial strategy would be the National Investment Bank proposed by John McDonell who has stated that such a bank could support the development of diversification plans in the local economies of areas heavily dependent on the defence industry, in consultation with local Unions and businesses.

In addition, a shadow Defence Diversification agency would also help deliver a future Labour Government’s goals of an ethical foreign policy and secure sustainable jobs, guaranteeing as Jeremy Corbyn said in his 2015 Labour Leadership statement “A just transition for communities whose livelihoods are based in those defence sectors, so that engineering and scientific skills are not lost but transferred into more socially productive industries”.

Building on from the workshop there are a few public meetings taking place on Defence diversification/arms conversion-Labour CND AGM; Parliamentary launch of Nuclear Education Trust report; Labour CND fringe at Unite conference; Yorkshire CND meeting with Fabian Hamilton.

You can continue discussion with both Steve Schofield on steveschofield@phonecoop.coop

And John Routley through john.routley@hotmail.co.uk

Thanks Moz Greenshields workshop chair

Draft Agenda for Monthly Meeting on 12th of July 2018

Agenda for Monthly Meeting on 12th of July 2018

7pm at Greek Cypriot Brotherhood, Finchley

07:00 PM

1

Attendance and apologies

07:05 PM

2

Review minutes of previous meeting

07:10 PM

3

Matters Arising from the Minutes

07:15 PM

4

Solidarity with the Bin Workers

07:45 PM

5

#kickoutcapita

08:00 PM

6

Antifacism

08:20 PM

7

Any Other Business and Delegates Motions

08:30 PM

8

Meeting Ends

Please submit other business to the secretary before 5pm on the 11th.


Proposed motion: Climate change motion to Barnet TUC

TUC London East and South East region notes – that the south east is suffering from the effects of climate change. More frequent flooding in the Thames Valley, rising sea levels threatening the Thames barrier and coastal erosion on the east coast, as well as the negative health effects of particulate pollution in urban and industrial areas. It also notes the historic climate motion passed unanimously at TUC’s 2017 Congress calling for energy democracy, a just transition to a sustainable future which protects current fossil fuel workers, insulation of homes, meeting carbon reduction targets, divestment of pension funds from fossil fuels, reduction of transport emissions and rights for environmental workplace reps.

TUC London East and South East region agrees that it is essential that Trade Unions engage members on these issues, to look at positive alternatives for future employment, and to campaign for one million new public sector jobs. At a time when fossil fuel jobs are in decline at and at risk through automation, we need a 21st century infrastructure plan to actively cut carbon emissions and create sustainable employment . This would include housing retrofitting, renewable energy, public transport, training, sustainable agriculture, and at the same time give a boost to UK steel production.

Therefore TUC London East and South East region resolves to:

a) Create a detailed plan and campaign for the climate jobs needed in the region

b)Affiliate to the CACC and participate in the TU group

c)Create a SERTUC Environmental Sustainability and Just Transition sub-group

 

250 words (excluding title)


Proposed motion: Heathrow

This conference recognises that there is significant popular and trade union opposition to the proposed expansion of Heathrow airport. We note that there remain significant doubts about the impacts of this development on noise levels and air quality in London and beyond, and on Britain’s commitments to reduce emissions of climate changing gases.

The main beneficiary will be (overseas-owned) Heathrow Airport Holdings, consolidating Heathrow’s dominant place among UK airports and damaging economic growth in Britain’s regions. The disbenefits of the airport expansion will fall disproportionately on poorer communities, particularly those in social housing, but with 70% of flights taken by 15% of the population, the expansion will be for the benefit of the few not the many. The plans for the third runway would substantially increase the number of schools currently affected by noise over the WHO recommended limits which we know will impact on health and learning.

While SERTUC is committed to protecting jobs and to sustainable future employment, we believe the claims about jobs are highly questionable and there are more effective opportunities to invest in growth that would have more equitable benefits and avoid catastrophic environmental effects.

The trade union movement should demand that the Labour Party adopts an alternative transport policy, developed in conjunction with the trade unions, that seeks to reduce demand for first and business class air travel by introducing a significant tax on this luxury air travel, making better use of existing airport capacity at London and regional airports and maintains a well-resourced and affordable rail network. The policy would promote alternative and more sustainable modes of transport to replace domestic and short-haul European luxury flying. We should also encourage and support research into green technologies including more fuel efficient and quieter aeroplanes and require airlines to adopt this technology, when it becomes available. Finally, if any workers loose their jobs as a consequence of these measures, then they should be given appropriate retraining and given some sort of priority, when applying for more environmentally friendly jobs.

This would be part of the creation of a million climate jobs in a just transition to a low carbon economy that will facilitate a more sustainable use of resources, protect the environment and delivers sustainable, high quality and highly skilled jobs.

1,041 words (excluding title)


Motion: London Renters’ Union

London’s three million renters pay the highest rents in Europe, and often get nothing but second rate housing and dangerous conditions in return. As renters, we never know when we may be forced to move, and we face the prospect for renting for our entire lives, raising families and growing old without a secure place to call home.

Absurdly, we enjoy better consumer rights when buying a fridge than when renting a home. Tenancies may be as short as six months, and landlords can end a tenancy or raise the rent at a moment’s notice. Rented homes aren’t even legally required to be fit for human habitation.

This is all the result of policy choices that promote property as an investment over people’s need for homes. Our housing system is actively helping a few to get rich while many others lose out. On average London’s renters spend half their income on rent. This pushes people on low incomes and in precarious work further into poverty while landlords, property firms and investors rake in profits.

Across the capital, we see homelessness on the rise and people being forced to leave the area where they live. Migrant communities face particularly acute problems finding housing, alongside those on housing benefits who too often face unfair discrimination.

It doesn’t have to be this way. Across Europe, renters have won protection from eviction, long term tenancies and rent caps. We can do the same here.

Renters are more than a convenient source of income for property investors – we’re people who need homes in which we can live and thrive. That’s why we back the London Renters Union, a new fighting union that aims to reboot the housing system in favour of renters. By standing and organising together, renters can win better conditions and affordable rents and ensure that everyone has a decent, secure place to call home.

This trades councils votes to affiliate to the London Renters Union and to take this motion to the Greater London Assembly of Trade Unions.

1,069 words (excluding title)

A Brief Report on the Annual General Meeting of BAPS

The Barnet Alliance for Public Services (BAPS) met on 4th of July, in what was effectively a relaunch for one of London’s longest running local anti-austerity organisations. The time could not be more right for the return of this grouping.

Keen as ever to emphasise the strong ties between community organisations and the trade union movement, there were two invited speakers from the unions. Steve Hedley, assistant general secretary of RMT, drew strong comparisons between BAPS’ struggle over services with RMT’s battles in the transport sector. Not only is privatisation, to big businesses that asset strip and repeatedly fail, a common theme but so also is the axing of workers who are essential to vulnerable people. This is as true of station staff and train conductors as it is of librarians and local care workers – and our movement should fight to retain all these grades. Steve finished by contrasting the left and the labour movement’s genuine concern for protecting the innocent with the false narrative currently being peddled by the hard right who are making a false cause out of it, and he urged everyone to attend the anti-fascist demo on July 14th.

Steve Day then spoke from the Baker’s Union (BFAWU) about the ongoing ‘McStrike’, and it was great to get an update. Since a mere 47 workers launched their action, down the road from where we were meeting at McDonald’s HQ in Finchley, one of the biggest employers in the world has been forced to concede a 6.5% pay rise for almost 200 thousand workers in Britain. The campaign to organise and improve the conditions of McDonald’s workers continues, and Day concluded by saying there would be a lot more of our tax revenue to pay for public services if some much wasn’t currently having to be paid as in-work welfare to subsidise absurdly the absurdly low pay large companies pay to service staff.

After the two guests, we had the more familiar faces of local “Mr Reasonable” blogger, John Dix, and Barnet Labour council group leader, Barry Rawlings. John reiterated that since the election, the news regarding the state of council finances just doesn’t stop getting worse. Cuts the Tories had initially estimated as totally £9 million are now looking more like £20 million (when John asked why the Tories were so caught off-gaurd by this, despite officers in Barnet being aware in February, he was told that Tory leader Richard Cornelius “doesn’t read reports”). The never-ending farce of payments to Capita (to say nothing of actual fraud) add completely unacceptably to this. Even when savings to their expensive provisions are found, Capita claim back 40% savings as “gain-share” – literal money for nothing! John said that on July 19th, when the Tories have been forced into having a council meeting to review options regarding Capita, good sense would call for so-called Option 3: bring it all back to the public sector. Barry, and numerous other Labour councillors from the borough, reiterated that the Tories are rampantly breaching election pledges, while doggedly supporting a national government that is directly responsible for lack of council funding, and called for pressure on Tory councillors and MPs to be maintained.

The next steps in the campaign, then are to unite our forces for Option 3. There will be a cultural launch, featuring the start of the Barnet Wall, on Friday the 13th at West Hendon’s Midland Pub. The big push for campaigning will be to get people to protest at Hendon Town Hall on Wednesday the 19th at 6pm.

DEMAND OPTION 3!

Barnet Alliance AGM Wednesday 4th July 6.30pm

This is a formal notification of BAPS AGM and relaunch, which will take place on Wednesday 4th July 6.30 pm at the Greek Cypriot Centre 2 Britannia Road N12 9RU.

 

Confirmed Speakers include:

Steve Hedley, Assistant General Secretary RMT
Shen, Mcstriker
Mr Reasonable: John Dix
Barry Rawlings, Leader of the Barnet Labour Group

Unconfirmed Speakers:

Richard Cornelius Leader of the Barnet Conservative administration

#BarnetOption3
#KickOutCapita

Please find attached BAPS constitution: Barnet Alliance for Public Services – Final Constitution

Propose Agenda for 7th June Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Meeting on 7th of June 2018

7pm at Greek Cypriot Brotherhood, Finchley

07:00 PM

1

Attendance and apologies

07:05 PM

2

Review minutes of previous meeting

07:05 PM

3

Matters Arising from the Minutes

07:15 PM

4

Report on local government workers

07:45 PM

5

Other Industrial Reports

08:00 PM

6

Love Music Hate Racism

08:20 PM

7

Any Other Business and Delegates Motions

08:30 PM

8

Meeting Ends

Please submit other business to the secretary before 5pm on the 5th.

ARISE: A Festival of Labour’s Left Ideas

The event takes place in London on the evening of 27 July and all day on July 28 and participants include: Diane Abbott MP //.Richard Burgon MP // Shami Chakrabarti // Chris Williamson MP // Emma Dent Coad MP // Lucy Anderson MEP // Liam Young – writer // Lara McNeil – Labour NEC Youth representative // Rachel Garnham, Labour Party NEC member // Steve Turner – Unite the Union // Christine Blower – international secretary, NEU(NUT section) // Shelly Asquith – People’s Assembly Against Austerity // Danielle Tiplady – nurse & NHS campaigner // Siân Errington – Labour Assembly Against Austerity // Cllr Asima Shaikh,CLPD // Murad Qureshi – Stop the War Coalition // Hugh Lanning – Palestine Solidarity Campaign // Laura Morales – Justice Mexico Now // Maz Saleem – Stand Up to Trump // Jenny Manson – Jewish Voice for Labour // Huda Elmi – Momentum NCG member & BAME Labour activist // Sean McGovern,Co-Chair, TUC’s Disabled Workers’ Committee & Unite Executive Council (National disabled members seat) // Mike Jackson – Lesbians & Gays Support the Miners (LGSM) & more special guests to be confirmed. Join us for a weekend of people powered politics, internationalism and solidarity. Discounted tickets are available here.

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