This Saturday, join the campaign against housing benefit cuts

Stand up for 18-21 year olds – fight the housing benefit cutlight

April 1st, 12pm, Parliament Square, London

The Government are about to axe housing benefits for 18-21 year olds. With few exceptions, no-one under 22 will have support with housing costs from April this year.

As a result, 9,000 young people will be at risk of homelessness, dues to a a cut that is expected to save only £3 million annually – a tiny amount within the Government’s overall budget.

Generation Rent will be joining campaigners and organisations from across London and the UK to stand against this cut and for decent housing support for all.

Please join us if you can and tell others about it – you can find out more and register below.


Facebook event:

Website event:

Organiser’s Facebook Page:


Generation Rent

Via People’s Assembly: Kevin Courtney, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers

Dear friend

I am writing to ask if you would support our campaign to stop the cuts to school budgets.

Schools are set to lose £3 billion a year in real terms by 2020. These are the largest cuts to school funding since the 1970s.

MPs from all parties have been urging the Government to invest more in our schools; in some areas governors have taken the unprecedented move of threatening strike action while parents and teachers are organising meetings up and down the country to draw attention to the issue.

Our website gives you an idea of severity of the problem. Just type in your postcode to see how schools in your area will be affected.

It would make a huge difference to our campaign if you would add your voice to our campaign, you can email your MP at /email-your-mp

A parents campaign has been founded and has groups in a number of towns and cities. Please sign up with them too at www.fairfundingforallschools. org.

In solidarity,

Kevin Courtney

(General Secretary, National Union of Teachers)

See you on the streets.

Barnet Housing Action released a press statement

barnetWe’d like to firstly thank the Mayor of London, for opening up the much needed debate on London Estate regeneration.  This consultation has given us an opportunity to highlight the iniquitous outcomes that have arisen from many  estate regenerations across London, and expose the truth that numerous estate regenerations have in reality resulted in families losing their homes. (Over 300 in West Hendon alone).

It was disappointing to see that the  democratic voice promised by the Mayor of London in his manifesto not only disappeared from the consultation, it went on to describe such ballots as being too “complex” and binary.   Does he really think that those residing on council estate are not able to grasp the arguments for estate regeneration?  We have seen over the last 5-10 years developers rampaging across our great city with no consideration for existing communities and London’s great heritage.

It is crucial that the Mayor gives residents in every estate facing regeneration a democratic vote without exception. This is not just a council estate issue now, the question here is “Who really does run London?”.

IFFCO Egypt union leaders acquitted of criminal charges face retrial

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????Workers at the IFFCO edible oils factory in Suez, Egypt are fighting to defend their union against employer brutality and government repression. The IFFCO workers have been fighting for an independent union for many years, and succeeded in registering the IFFCO Egypt Labour Union in 2012. Towards the end of 2016, the union formally requested a customary end-of-year salary adjustment to help offset runaway inflation. On December 26 workers were informed that money had been allocated, but the bulk of it would be distributed to management, with workers receiving little. Local management rejected the union’s request for formal negotiations to discuss distribution of the salary adjustment, prompting the union to organize a peaceful protest and declare its intention to hold a strike. On December 29, police raided the homes of the union President and General Secretary and four other workers. And on January 3, police stormed the factory and arrested 13 striking workers. On January 29 the workers were all acquitted in a Suez court of ‘inciting’ a strike, but the prosecution has appealed the decision and the workers will be tried again. Fifteen IFFCO workers including the union President and General Secretary are barred from returning to work and union members are under pressure to ‘resign’.

The IFFCO workers need your support

Good response to Housing Campaign in Finchley

17203200_1801068880220214_4903282850337019352_nBarnet Housing action report a superb day leafletting in Fincley today, with the petition to call on Sadiq Khan to require that regeneration takes place ONLY when there is resident support.

There’s still time to sign the petition before the deadline on Monday and the housing action group are taking filled out postcards to the Town Hall on Tuesday.

Join the demonstration outside the public inquirey on housing at the RAF Musuem, Grahame Park Way, London NW9 5LL on Tuesday the 28th of March from 11am to 2pm.


Annual General Meeting 2017 Report


Thursday saw us hold our AGM, our ninth since officially relaunching last decade, and despite some organisation hiccoughs (those who were there know what I mean!) it was a really good night.

Unfortunately, TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes was forced to give his apologies because he was attending talks between Irish bus workers and their employers at the time. Never the less, we had some excellent speakers, starting with two comrades from Derby Unison to talk to us about the long running dispute between school support staff and the city council.

Unions organiser Oliver gave us the basic run-down on the situation, in which the council had very specifically targeted school support workers for an alleged “equal pay review” that saw their already modest salaries cut by as much as 25% in some cases, forcing the union into industrial action that has been running since June last year. Teaching assistant Sarah, who works with children with special needs, spoke very m20170309_194607ovingly about how her colleagues desperately wanted to just go back to jobs that they care about deeply, but are losing homes and livelihoods and feel they have no choice. Disappointingly, Derby city council is a Labour administration (with a majority of one!) that has proved intransigent to appeals from the national leaderships of both Unison and the Labour Party. Barnet TUC resolved to donate one hundred pounds, and do a collection on the night, but more importantly to get this massive dispute to be more widely known to help these essential workers get justice. We are all being asked to write to Derby councillors and urge them to end this attack on school support workers. Get more information on the Derby City Unison Facebook page.

Next we heard from Phoebe Moore, of the UCU, speaking about her work with the Freedom of Movement campaign. Freedom of Movement was set up by university workers in response to threat that restrictions on immigration have toward higher education in this country, and what they perceived to be a drift within the labour movement to supporting this by endorsing restrictive “points based” systems that countries like Australia use. They have been primarily working on getting educational institutions to commit to passing motions affirming support for free movement, but are now urging other parts of the movement to come on board. Our own Unison members followed this up with their experience of trying to organise a symbolic “One Day without Us” event on February 20th. They found out that there was actually significant fear among EU national workers about doing simple things like being photographed holding “I am Immigrant” placards, showing how necessary this work really is. Bahir from the NUT also urged the meeting to remember that freedom of movement is something that we want for all people, not just those of certain nationalities, we are internationalists not just Europeans.

Our final speaker Miriam Scharf from the Middle-East and North Africa Solidarity Network. Although MENA, which was formed in 2011 in response to the wave of revolutions in the region, actually gets involved in workers’ struggles in many countries, Miriam spoke to us primarily about the organisation’s work with activists in around Egypt. Despite heavy repression since the counter-revolution of 2013, workers and activists in Egypt have continued to take action – there are actually more strikes per year in Egypt than in Britain, despite striking being completely illegal. MENA was part of numerous important campaigns, such as the campaign to get the labour lawyer Haitham MohamEgypt_SOLIDARITYedain released from prison and support for Alexandria dockworkers, ultimately successful, action against their military employers (pictured). Miriam urged urgent support for an Amnesty International letter writing campaign that is happening now, justice for Italian Cambridge University student Gulio Regeni, who was captured and murdered while in Egypt researching the conditions of Egyptian workers in January last year. BTUC voted to affiliate to MENA.

Obviously, the key task for the AGM was approving our constitution and officers committee for the new year. I am proud to announce that the following officers have been elected:

  • President: Keith Nason, Barnet NUT
  • Vice-President: Dominic Alexander, Barnet College UCU
  • Secretary: Kieran Crowe, London Underground MATS & Operational Management TSSA
  • Minutes Secretary: Bahir Lattoe, Barnet NUT
  • Equalities Officer: Helen Davies, Barnet Local Government Unison

The posts of treasurer and deputy treasurer will announced shortly. I think I can speak for the entire committee and say that we are all looking forward to a fresh year’s campaign, starting with the march against racism next week.


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