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From The Socialist newspaper, 9 July 2014

Workplace news in brief

Tesco's pittance wage increase

Tesco workers are getting a 1.4% pay increase - 11p an hour! Despite talk of a crisis in the retail industry, Tesco is still an expanding business, making around 3 billion in profit over the last year.

Usdaw's national forum rejected the initial offer. But when Tesco came back again with the same offer, it appears our leadership blinked first, and although not recommending the offer, have allowed Tesco to impose it.

This is the reality of partnership agreements- a dictatorship where Tesco says 'jump' and Usdaw leaders end up asking 'how high?'

During negotiations a campaign was being waged separate from the union to force the Tesco AGM to support paying staff a living wage. Why couldn't Usdaw have linked up with this?

Usdaw's leadership believes that retail workers will not strike. This is justified on the basis that workers can't afford to lose pay for striking. Well, we can't afford low pay!

We need a fighting union. In upcoming union elections, Tesco rep Amy Murphy will be standing for president and re-election to the executive alongside other candidates prepared to take on Tesco, including Activist supporter Scott Jones.

Brighton college victory

UCU and Unison members at Brighton and Hove City College have won a partial, but significant, victory against compulsory redundancies as a result of two demonstrations and a one-day strike.

Ferry workers get crumbs

The RMT is organising protests against Condor Ferries hiring people below the minimum wage.

Condor continue to recruit Ukrainian seafarers on pay as low as 2.35 an hour for ships to the Channel Islands from Portsmouth, Poole and Weymouth. Condor's latest accounts show a staggering 275% increase in pre-tax profits, entirely built on seafarers' exploited labour.

Protests will take place at Portsmouth Continental Ferry Port, Wharf Road PO2 8RU on Tuesday 15 July at midday and Saturday 26 July at 7am.

Reject BT pay deal

BT workers in the CWU union are about to be balloted on a three-year pay offer. The first year will see a 2% pay increase plus a consolidated 200 lump sum. The second and third years will see a 2.5% increase with a proviso to reopen talks if RPI inflation is below 2% or above 3%.

BT made 2.3 billion profit last year. The offer has already drawn angry reactions from members on BT discussion forums. Some people have threatened to leave the union with others calling for a change of leadership.

The right wing led telecoms executive is beginning to undermine its base of support among ordinary members. If the offer is accepted it will likely be by a much smaller margin than in recent years.

CWU members should decisively reject this deal.

Clive Walder, CWU Birmingham, Black Country and Worcester branch

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Coronavirus crisis - Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

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In The Socialist 9 July 2014:

Socialist Party news and analysis

Super-rich flash cash at Tory bash

After 10 July - build workers' movement

NSSN - Organising the resistance

Junk Juncker, Cameron and the anti-worker EU

New Tory attacks on trade union strikes

Super-rich Tory MP profits from evictions

Coulson faces prosecution over Tommy Sheridan

Emergency: Con-Dems don't care

Them & Us

International socialist news and analysis

Israel-Palestine: Netanyahu government fuels protests

Socialist Party workplace news

Unite conference reflects growth of socialist ideas

Argos workers strike for work-life balance

Locked-out pathology staff "cannot give in"

NSSN supporters back striking Tyneside Safety Glass workers

Workplace news in brief

Socialist Party reports and campaigns

NHS: No to cuts!

Help fund the fight against the 1%

Why I joined the Socialist Party

Reading the revolution

Exposing Ukip's lies in Bracknell

Readers' comments

Fracking: short-term profit before safety

Labour rejects rail renationalisation

Robert Service's historical prejudice on Liverpool

Britain's non-investing, cheap wage bosses


Home   |   The Socialist 9 July 2014   |   Join the Socialist Party

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Related links:


triangleWorkers need a 'new deal' - at least 12 an hour now!

triangleUsdaw shop workers' union activists meet via Zoom

triangleSupermarkets are ruled by profit - unions should control supply limits

triangleIncompetent bosses use tech to bully us

triangleWhat strategy can end the retail jobs massacre?


triangleLabour councils miss opportunity to stop Tory cuts

triangleBrighton Socialist Party: After the election, what next?

triangleBrighton anti-academy campaign steps up


triangleSixth-form strikers stand firm for increased funding

triangleFighting government cuts to sixth form colleges: Picket line at City & Islington sixth form college, London, 12.2.20

triangleUniversity and College Union: Pensions, pay and conditions dispute reach a crucial stage


triangleBattle with BT management needed to win real pay rise

triangleThe private sector will never provide broadband to every home, nationalisation will


triangleEquity union president elections: re-elect Maureen


triangleReaders' opinion


triangleSunday trading: Government blinks first


trianglePosties walk out in Peterborough after manager tests positive


triangleLiverpool RMT seafarers protest against super-exploitation


triangleSouth Western Railway staff strike for safety

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