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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 December 2011

Reinstate Paul Kelly: Solidarity with Portsmouth RMT

On 11 November Paul Kelly, an elected transport union RMT rep at Wightlink Ferries in Portsmouth was dismissed on trumped-up charges and what many workers see as an anti-union vendetta by management.

Paul has a proud record of standing up for his members' rights and safety. He recently campaigned against the imposition of new rosters, while highlighting issues which led to an intervention by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency on the grounds of safety.

Following this campaign Paul was given informal advice by a manager after failing to wear full protective clothing when responding to an emergency request for technical assistance by a ship's captain.

However, this was suddenly escalated to a charge of gross misconduct and dismissal when a second allegation was made against Paul.

The RMT began balloting for strike action on 30 November, while the city's trades council has pledged its support for any action the branch may take.

RMT general secretary Bob Crow said: "Paul Kelly's case is one of the most blatant examples of victimisation for union activities you will ever come across...

"The events leading up to our member's dismissal appear farcical, with informal advice suddenly escalated to dismissal, and clearly show an employer jumping at the opportunity to remove an effective representative."

In support of the RMT, Portsmouth Socialist Party demands the immediate reinstatement of Paul Kelly, an immediate end to the campaign of victimisation by the management of Wightlink and a full, transparent inquiry into how a manager used company disciplinary procedures to carry out a vendetta.

Ben Norman

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In The Socialist 7 December 2011:


Socialist Party feature

Con-Dems pile on the misery - 'Enough is enough'


Socialist Party editorial

Eurozone crisis - capitalists have no solution


Workplace news and analysis

Cuts and misery - it doesn't have to be like this

Socialist MEP supports public sector strike

"The genie is out of the bottle"

30 November strike: a historic day!

Building a fighting union - interview with Steve Hedley

Defend the JIB, victory to the sparks!

Reinstate Paul Kelly: Solidarity with Portsmouth RMT

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party news and analysis

Tory sleaze is back!

Reading the riots

All in it together

Them & Us


Climate change

Climate change and extreme weather


Housing crisis

Homes Crisis: Fund housing need - not fat cat greed!


International socialist news and analysis

Portugal: Build on the general strike action

Ireland: Resist latest austerity attacks

Tamil Solidarity: Gearing up for 2012

Brazilian socialists remember Socrates


Socialist Party reviews

Theatre review

When workers planned production: the Lucas Aerospace plan


 

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