Financial Meltdown in Barnet – Read Mr Reasonable


Yesterday Barnet published the agenda for the Policy & Resources committee next Monday which you can read here.  I am used to surprises but this one was gobsmacking. I blogged just a couple of weeks ago about the parlous state of Barnet’s finances including the Medium Term Financial Strategy  (MTFS) published in February. Yesterday Barnet published a revised MTFS.

So whereas in February they were forecasting a shortfall of £2.79 million in 2018/19 they are now forecasting a £9.5 million shortfall and in 2019/20 the shortfall jumps from £8.2 million to £19.3 million all in the space of four months. The long term prospects are apocalyptic with a shortfall of £42 million in 2021/22 and by 2023/24 a “high level calculation” showing a shortfall of £62 million. This means the council can no longer exist in its current form.

I simply cannot believe that in February – before the election – no one was aware of just how bad the financial situation was, in which case were the electorate misled?

Tube Strikes Wednesday 6 June and Thursday 14 June

ASLEF attended talks at ACAS with London Underground to try to find a way to resolve the disputes on the Jubilee line and at Acton Town on the District line. Strike action has been called for next Wednesday 6 June and Thursday 14 June.

Finn Brennan, ASLEF’s organiser on the Underground, said: ‘As always, we will go to these talks with an open mind and prepared to seek agreement. Until now, management have refused to meet with us on these issues and it is understandable that our reps and members suspect that their last-minute change of heart means they are simply “going through the motions”; turning up for talks but unwilling to change their hard-line stance.


‘The issues at the centre of these separate disputes are the imposition of new duty schedules that break commitments on weekend working on the Jubilee line, and the failure to follow agreed procedures on the District line, are symptomatic of a management style that seems to relish confrontation instead of trying to work with trade unions to solve problems.


‘We hope that management will make a genuine effort to solve these disputes with us tomorrow and avoid disruption.’

Oppose racist and fascist march for Tommy Robinson

Supporters of fascist and English Defence League founder Tommy Robinson have said they will march in London on Saturday 9 June.

Robinson and his supporters have a history of racism and islamophobia, and have many links to fascist organisations. Before leading the EDL, Robinson was in the fascist BNP.

They want to use the fact that Robinson has been jailed as an excuse to spread their racism and hate.

Unite Against Fascism and Stand Up to Racism have called a counter protest on the day. Please circulate and share widely. Invite all of your friends and fellow anti racists.

On the day, bring trade union and community banners. Facebook page here.

Propose Agenda for 7th June Meeting

Agenda for Monthly Meeting on 7th of June 2018

7pm at Greek Cypriot Brotherhood, Finchley

07:00 PM


Attendance and apologies

07:05 PM


Review minutes of previous meeting

07:05 PM


Matters Arising from the Minutes

07:15 PM


Report on local government workers

07:45 PM


Other Industrial Reports

08:00 PM


Love Music Hate Racism

08:20 PM


Any Other Business and Delegates Motions

08:30 PM


Meeting Ends

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

5th of June: Environment Committee decides the fate of Street Scene services

5th June 6.30pm
Hendon Town Hall, The Burroughs, NW4 4BG
Environment Committee decides the fate of Street Scene services.

Street Scene workers have gone through many changes over the last three years. Senior managers have come and gone, and each one has brought their own ideas of how to run the service and in some cases this has meant cuts to staff and changes to the way you work. On Tuesday 5 June, 2018, Barnet councillors are being asked to agree a whole load of changes to Street Scene services, most of which will have an impact on staff and residents. In all of my time as a trade union organiser in Barnet I have never seen Street Scene workers turn up for a Barnet Council meeting. It is my view that for your voice to be heard, Street Scene workers need to turn up to meet the councillors who will vote on the proposed changes. Over the next few days Barnet UNISON will be issuing reminders to all of our members about the need to attend this meeting.
I hope that you will be able to join me there.
John Burgess, Branch Secretary, Barnet UNISON
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