Unite, Britain and Ireland’s largest union, has called for a London-wide boycott by the public of leisure centres run by social enterprise leisure services’ giant Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL).
Unite said the boycott call of GLL’s money-spinning leisure centres across the capital would support the 50 Bromley library staff who have been on strike since 6 June over pay and other issues specifically relating to GLL’s stewardship of Bromley’s 14 libraries.
The boycott will be launched on Friday (28 June) when Unite members will stage protests at three GLL venues in Woolwich. GLL has contracts with 16 London boroughs to run leisure centres and/or libraries.
The union is aiming its boycott campaign at potential new members that the GLL sales force wants to sign up for gym membership and fitness classes, as well as one-off users. It is not aimed at those with pre-paid membership plans.
Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: “The call for the London-wide
boycott of GLL leisure centres is aimed at putting pressure where it
hurts – in the company’s coffers – to achieve a resolution of the
Bromley library dispute.
“We argue that every penny that goes to GLL, generated by its money-spinning activities at its leisure centres, helps it to win further library contracts which then results in a serious erosion of library services for both users and staff.
“Our Bromley library members have been on continuous strike since 6
June and have received fantastic support from the public who are
refusing to enter the libraries in a great show of support.”
The Bromley dispute relates to GLL bosses not filling vacant posts; asking staff to be managers without paying the proper rate for the job; and failing to pay wages owed.
Unite is seeking a six per cent increase in basic pay from April 2019 for its hundreds of members working for GLL in more than 140 leisure centres and libraries in 16 London boroughs, as well as in Belfast.
The London boroughs with GLL contracts are: Barnet, Bromley, Camden, Croydon, Ealing, Greenwich, Hackney, Hammersmith and Fulham, Hillingdon, Lambeth, Islington, Kensington and Chelsea, Merton, Tower Hamlets, Waltham Forest and Wandsworth.
Notes to editors:
Diary of upcoming protest events organised by Unite
Friday 28 June
10.00 – Headquarters building. Middlegate House, The Royal Arsenal, Woolwich SE18 6SX
11.00 – Waterfront leisure centre, Woolwich High Street, London SE18 6DL
12.00 – Woolwich library, Calderwood Street, London SE18 6QZ
Friday 5 July
Demonstration at 10.00 – Charlton Lido, Hornfair Park, Shooters Hill Road, SE18 4LX. The lido is a GLL showpiece venue.
Last year, Unite staged a campaign to make GLL pay the London Living Wage (LLW) to those aged 18-to-20 on a number of its contracts in the capital.
For more information please contact Unite senior communications officer Shaun Noble on 020 3371 2060 or 07768 693940. Unite press office is on: 020 3371 2065 Email: email@example.com
Over a thousand key London Underground staff to strike over safety-critical cuts
TUBE UNION RMT confirmed today that over a thousand key London Underground maintenance and engineering staff will strike for three days in a dispute over the hacking back of train preparation and inspection schedules which the union warns would have a devastating impact on both service reliability and public safety. The announcement follows a nine to one vote for action.
Staff will take strike action as follows:
Not to book on for any shifts between 07:00 on Friday 17th May until 07:00 Monday 20th May 2019
In addition workers are taking action short of strike in a number of areas around risk assessments , a ban on lone working and a ban on working without valid licences and fire wardens being in place.
The staff involved work at tube fleet maintenance depots right across
Greater London and are critical to the day to day operation of London
Earlier this year RMT advised London Underground that a dispute situation exists over its intentions to extend the fleet train preparation schedules. Despite that, LU has continued to fail to engage in any meaningful consultation or negotiation with RMT or provide the union with full information on all safety aspects.
The LU proposals will decimate inspection frequencies beyond all recognition. Not only will it lead to major fleet issues, it will inevitably lead to more train failures in service putting unacceptable pressure on members and leaving the whole of LUL and the travelling public at significant increased risk.
RMT has demanded that no changes to fleet preparation schedules take
effect without agreement between LUL and RMT and that all current
activity in relation to the matter is halted until full consultation and
negotiation has taken place, including full examination of all safety
aspects in relation to this matter.
RMT General Secretary Mick Cash said:
“The nine to one ballot result showed just how angry tube staff are
at proposals London Underground are attempting to bulldoze through that
would decimate the inspection and safety culture on the fleet.
“Despite that result tube bosses have ignored the workforce and are pressing ahead and it is that intransigence that has left us no option but to confirm industrial action today.
“Our message is clear, LU should pull back immediately rather than crash on regardless of the consequences of their actions.
“We remain available for genuine and serious talks.”
PCS members at beleaguered contractor Interserve, working at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, will take strike action following the company’s refusal to negotiate with the union on redundancies, contractual changes to pay dates, and attacks on holiday pay and sick pay.
The strike action will take place on 1 and 2 May and members are angry at Interserve for making workers redundant, imposing detrimental changes and refusing to negotiate with PCS reps.
Cleaners at the company have raised concerns about unclear contracts, shortages in holiday pay and the lack of back pay from increases they were due from August 2018.
Our members working for Interserve provide services including facilities management, messengers, print room, porterage and cleaning in a number of government departments.
There has been mounting concern for the finances of the company since last year. However the government accepted a bid by Interserve to run FCO services in August 2018.
PCS General Secretary Mark Serwotka said: “This is a powerful message that our members are sending. They will not stand by while a failing company like Interserve attacks their terms and conditions and at the same time, refuses to negotiate with the union.
“Staff have told us that changes to their pay dates have left them out of pocket and struggling to make ends meet.
“The whole debacle shows that Interserve should never have been awarded the contract at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
“Ministers cannot escape their responsibility and they should have learned from the disaster at Carillion that contracting out doesn’t make sense financially.
“All these jobs at the FCO and elsewhere must be safeguarded and brought back in-house as soon as possible.”
UNISON announced the result of its consultative ballot today (Monday) which revealed a massive 92.3 per cent voted to take strike action. And 100 per cent of those who took part in the ballot voted in favour of action short of strike action. UNISON’s consultative ballot of Children and Families Social Work staff had a turnout of 87.8 per cent.
Simon Macfarlane, UNISON regional organiser, said: “This is a phenomenal result and clearly illustrates the resolve of our members to stand up to unacceptable workloads and unsafe practices in West Dunbartonshire. This is about the safety of workers and vulnerable children and their families and our members are to be congratulated for taking a stand.”
UNISON will be meeting management tomorrow (Tuesday) and is calling for immediate action to put an end to short staffing, unacceptable workloads, unallocated cases and unsuitable arrangements for access meetings.
Simon continued: “Management must heed this crystal clear message from our members and we will not hesitate to move to a formal industrial action ballot to keep our members safe. This is the reality of needless austerity in 2019, workers at breaking point and at-risk children unsupported.
“We have raised our concerns beyond West Dunbartonshire and welcome that Peter Macleod, chief executive of the Care Inspectorate and Lorraine Gray, chief executive of the Scottish Social Services Council, have both confirmed they are raising the matter with the council and the Health and Social Care Partnership. It is now time for the council administration and management to act and ensure the safety of workers, children and families.
For further information: Simon Macfarlane 07703 194132
- rest breaks,
- settlements for longstanding personal cases
- and the reinstatement of a PCS member.
There will be two picket lines from 6 am at Derby Gate and Carriage Gate.
You can show your support by:
- Supporting the picket lines
- Sending a message of support to firstname.lastname@example.org
- Making a donation to the PCS Fighting Fund
We the employees of Primark, believe that the living wage should be paid for the labour we provide. Sign the petiton.
The current London Living Wage is £10.55 and £9.00 for the rest of the country. But the wage store assistants receive, at the Primark Marble Arch store, is £8.09 per hour. That’s £2.46 less every hour, than than the suggested amount. The London Living Wage is a fair wage that enables people to not just survive but to live. Primark has a responsibility to its over 70,000 employees, to provide a living wage.
Primark currently holds the second largest market share of clothing retail in the UK. Within the last year profits rose 15% from £735 million to £843 million.
We believe Primark should be a leader in wages just as it is a leader in retail market. Employees wages should reflect the success of the company. If companies such as IKEA and LUSH can provide a living wage there is no reason for Primark not to.
Primark does increase wages every April: in 2018 they increased the pay by 18 pence per hour. Meaning Primark’s hourly wage increased by 2.2% compared to Primark profits which increased by 15%. This does not reflect the value of labour we provide.
A year ago a petition was handed in internally at the Marble Arch store. There has been no official response to this so we feel it is time to make a public petition.
We know there are workers at Primark working full-time, struggling to make ends meet for their families, even with support from the Government. Primark rely on the Government to subsidise their workforce in effect. A pay rise to the living wage would show that Primark can lead the way in being a responsible employer, recognising the true value of its workforce.
When one brand changes its business, others see and follow suit. A company as big and influential as Primark switching to paying the Living Wage would have an effect on other companies around it. If you care about working rights then please sign this petition.
It is time workers got the pay they deserve for the labour that they do.