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From The Socialist newspaper, 20 August 2014

BT pay cuts: we need less surveys, more action!

Clive Walder, CWU Birmingham, Black Country and Worcester branch

The Communication Workers Union (CWU) telecoms section is once again shying away from a fight with BT and recommending cuts in pay and conditions for new staff.

The 2013 CWU telecoms conference called for an industrial action ballot if there had been no meaningful improvement in performance management by July.

In response, the union conducted a survey asking members three questions: if they had noticed any improvement; if they thought the new agreement (supposed to cure all ills) needed more time to bed in; and if they wished to be balloted for strike action.

Four out of five workers said there had been no improvement and 57% wanted a strike action ballot. But the union will conduct another survey, this time in conjunction with managers' union Prospect.

Their reasoning was that the 28% response rate didn't give them a mandate. The CWU telecoms executive now appears to accept David Cameron's view on ballots!

Also the union has called a special conference on 20-21 August in Birmingham to discuss BT's proposals to employ new recruits on worse pay and conditions.

BT has employed people on inferior terms and conditions in new call centres for a while but this enshrines second class status for new recruits.

BT profits

We've seen 2.3 billion profits, huge investment in BT Sport and 300 million a year being spent buying back the company's own shares to increase dividends.

But they aim to pay new call centre workers 6,000 less a year and new engineers about 4,000 less than their longer serving counterparts.

The current CWU Telecoms leadership is proof of the disaster that is 'partnership' between employer and union and can now do little more than 'sell' BT policy to their members.

Socialists and Broad Left members in the CWU will be vigorously condemning these proposals and campaigning for a fighting union leadership and for taking the entire telecoms industry into public ownership.

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In The Socialist 20 August 2014:


Socialist Party news and analysis

We can't live on poverty pay!

Protests, strikes, equality: Women in World War One

Socialist policies needed to answer Project Fear

Scandal of underfunded mental health services

Government's economic mirage as election approaches

Them & Us


The Socialist readers' comments

Welsh councils have a choice

Why I joined the Socialists


International socialist news and analysis

Iraq: Only united action can stop sectarian war

USA: Ferguson erupts over police killing

Jess Spear election success


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Capitalism means war: Join the Socialists!

Join the Fast Food Rights day of action on 28 August

Youth services: jobs and centres slashed

Campaign steps up on New Era estate

Re-house Charlie Wort!

Protest camp brings NHS activists together

The People's March for the NHS

Liverpool anger at library closures

Campaigning for genuine equality at Leeds Pride

TUSC byelection reports


Socialist Party workplace news

Care UK workers to strike for three weeks

North West Fire Service call centre cuts catastrophe

BT pay cuts: we need less surveys, more action!

Surrey council workers look to strike on pay

Royal Mail workers stage unofficial walkout

Support London Taxi drivers' fight against deregulation


 

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Related links:

CWU:

trianglePosties walk out in Peterborough after manager tests positive

trianglePostal workers' action results in double victory for union

trianglePostal workers force Royal Mail back

triangleRoyal Mail dispute: Interview with a CWU branch secretary

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Pay:

triangleMore blunders and profiteering in Tory track-and-trace scheme

triangleTransport workers and passengers mustn't pay the price

triangleFurlough cut-off could force millions back to unsafe workplaces

triangleLeicester care workers face pay cut and worse conditions

Cuts:

triangleStrong union response needed against job cuts

triangleSafe protests against Tory corona chaos continue

triangleJohnson's plan terrifies me - readers react to lifting lockdown

BT:

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

triangleBroadband: privatisation has failed to deliver, time for a socialist plan

Union:

triangleCovid crisis boosts union membership but TUC leaders want to cosy up to the bosses!

Telecoms:

triangleEE puts workers' health and safety at risk

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