Convoy to Calais

Barnet TUC is proudly suppoting this project for solidarity with refugees:

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Hundreds more refugees have drowned in the Mediterranean, the British government are refusing to even take parentless children from Calais, and Syrian refugees are being forced back into the jaws of the war they have fled.

The Convoy to Calais on 18 June will be a huge demonstration of solidarity with refugees from the people of this country. The major unions are in. The biggest social movements are in. The Muslim community is in. Are you?

This is practical aid but it is also a huge moving protest at the way governments across the continent are failing refugees. This is the time to come together and say: stop the scapegoating, solidarity with the refugees.

Organised by People’s Assembly Against Austerity, Stop the War Coalition, Stand up to Racism, Unite the Union, Communications Workers Union, TSSA, War on Want, Momentum & Muslim Association of Britain

Here’s what you can do:

  • Come on the Convoy. We need every last lorry, van, bus, car, motorbike or scooter that can come to be with us. Let us know you’re coming by registering, and do make a donation to help with the costs. Even if you have to peel off at Dover and cant make it all the way. (Initial itinary below)
  • Collect: we need material, and money. Collect in your workplace, union, community, place of worship or just among your friends. Every bit counts. Download the full aproved donation list HERE.
  • Even if you haven’t collected anything do come on the Convoy. We need hands to unload and a massive show of solidarity.

TSSA Conference 2016

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This weekend, I was lucky enough to be delegated to this year’s conference of my union, the Transport Salaried Staff’s Association. The event was thoroughly upbeat as a result of a year in which the union has overcome some very serious challenges in adapting to the changing transport industry and has also played a very important role in the wider labour movement. Those of us from London could feel a particular satisfaction that the mayoral candidate we had been backing from the very start, Sadiq Khan, had just won a historic victory as we due to begin. Representation from all branches was the strongest it had been for years, with excellent delegations from TSSA’s recently and thoroughly revitalised sections in Scotland and Ireland.

Strong motions were passed on key campaigning strategies. The union resolved to combat the appalling misrepresentation of the movement in the media by supporting the Morning Star newspaper, to play a bigger role in the People’s Assembly Against Austerity and get involved in campaigns for social housing, green jobs and saving steel manufacturing in Britain. There was also a thorough debate on the forthcoming EU referendum: after speeches from both sides, conference adopted a “Remain” position with a set of demands for reform of the EU, as well as a motion for total opposition to the so-called “Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership” (TTIP).

International solidarity was also an important theme. We had a short film and presentation about the important work of Justice for Colombia, who fight for the rights of trade unionists who face some of the worst violence and repression against our movement in the world. This was followed by a very moving report from TSSA general secretary Manuel Cortes and president Mick Carney about their participation in a trade union delegation to Palestine, about which they have both written about how urgently there needs to be action to support the rights of people in this occupied country. The union also put a statement of support for imprisoned Egyptian workers’ rights lawyer, Haitham Mohamedain.

In terms of guest speakers, we literally could not have asked for better. Shadow chancellor, John McDonell, spoke at fringe meeting before conference began. Leader of our sister transport union the RMT, Mick Cash, came and adressed us about the urgent need to work together to face new challenges such as technological and organisational change in our industry. But the universally acclaimed high point came at dinner on Sunday when we had keynote speeches from Shadow Rail Minister, Andy McDonald, and of course the leader of the opposition, Jeremy Corbyn, a long-standing friend of the entire trade union movement.

UCU confirms two-day strike at UK universities over pay

Statement from the UCU

 

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UCU confirms two-day strike at UK universities over pay

9 May 2016

UCU has confirmed plans for a two-day national strike at UK universities as part of an ongoing dispute over pay.

UCU members in higher education will walk out on Wednesday 25 and Thursday 26 May. Staff will also begin working to contract from 25 May, which means they will refuse to work overtime, set additional work or undertake any voluntary duties like covering timetabled classes for absent colleagues.

If no agreement is reached in the coming weeks, members have agreed to target further strike action in June and July, and are considering additional action in August to coincide with the release of A-level results. The union is also beginning preparations for a boycott of the setting and marking of students’ work, to begin in the autumn if an acceptable offer has still not been made.

The dispute has arisen following a pay offer of 1.1% from the employer body, the Universities and Colleges Employers’ Association (UCEA), which the union has described as ‘an insult’. UCU said universities could afford to pay more and that the latest offer does little to address the real terms pay cut of 14.5% suffered by higher education staff since 2009.

The union also countered UCEA’s claim that their offer would amount to a 3% average salary increase once pay progression is included, saying that 54% of union members are already at the top of their pay grade and will not be eligible for an annual increment.

The squeeze on staff salaries comes at a time when pay and benefits for university leaders have increased, on average, by 3%, with the average pay and pensions package for vice-chancellors standing at over £270,000.

UCU general secretary, Sally Hunt said: ‘Members in higher education have sent a clear message to employers that, after six years of real-terms pay cuts amounting to 14.5%, they will not tolerate a continued squeeze on their income. Industrial action which impacts on students is never taken lightly, but staff feel that they have been left with no alternative.

‘A 1.1% offer is an insult to the hard work and dedication of higher education staff, particularly in light of the 3% average pay rise enjoyed by vice-chancellors this year. The ball is now in UCEA’s court, but the employers need to come back to the table with a much improved offer if they wish to avoid significant disruption to students in the coming months.’

UCU

 

Capita have cancelled Freedom Passes for adults with disabilities

Barnet Councils private contractors Capita have cancelled Freedom Passes for adults with mental health issues and other disabilities like autism without giving any notice. 
 
This has meant that many people have found out for the first time that their Pass has been cancelled while trying to use public transport. Others have had their Pass cancelled as a result of a reassessment, despite there being no change in their condition.
 
This is despicable and unacceptable.
 
And possibly illegal.
 
And
For further information on how Capita, on behalf of Barnet Council, are making the lives of disabled residents intolerable.
Barnet Labour have started a petition for immediate reinstatement of the disabled Freedom pass to these residents.
 
I urge you to please sign this petition and share throughout your networks.
We must stand against this treatment of disabled residents.

 

#Solidarity with #JuniorDoctorsStrike at the Department of Health

 

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Jeremy Corbyn has thrown his support behind striking junior doctors with a speech to hundreds of protesters He said: “The government has an opportunity to settle this, they should get on and do so.” He was joined by the shadow chancellor, John McDonnell, who said the health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, would eventually have to back down on his threat to impose a new contract.

Hundreds of striking doctors were joined by teachers and other Trade Unionists as they marched on Whitehall.

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National Demonstration Saturday 16th April – Join The Barnet Block!!!!

The Tories have been under mounting pressure in recent weeks after George Osborne’s shambolic Budget triggered a humiliating U-turn over planned cuts to disability benefit, the steel crisis, the Tory civil war in the run-up to June’s crunch referendum, the Panama Papers Tax dodging scandal, the enforced Academisation of our schools and the Junior Doctors strike defending our NHS. Lets keep up the pressure, march to topple this Government, march for Health, Homes, Jobs and Education.

Please share the event widely .

JOIN US!!!!

JOIN THE BARNET BLOCK!!!! 

Meet Up Outside Habitat, Opposite Goodge Street Tube Station, Tottenham Court Road  12.45pm & look for the Barnet UNISON Banner

JOIN THE BARNET BLOCK!!!! 

Meet Up Outside Habitat, Opposite Goodge Street Tube Station, Tottenham Court Road  12.45pm & look for the Barnet UNISON Banner

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