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From The Socialist newspaper, 14 September 2016

Workplace news in brief

Congress House, headquarters of the Trade Union Congress, photo by Kaihsu (Creative Commons)

Congress House, headquarters of the Trade Union Congress, photo by Kaihsu (Creative Commons)   (Click to enlarge)

TUC Congress update

TUC Congress has unanimously passed an RMT motion calling for an emergency conference to discuss resistance to the government's Trade Union Act. In moving the motion, RMT President Sean Hoyle said one of his first acts as RMT president was to go on a lobby of Parliament against the bill, noting it was the same place that passed the Slavery Abolition Act in 1833. But now the Trade Union Act will be used by bosses to hinder workers' democratic rights. Sean pointed out that some concessions were won by the trade union movement when the bill became an act but we shouldn't "be happy with crumbs". He also called for the emergency conference to discuss general strike action to resist the act. The motion was amended and seconded by the Fire Brigades Union, National Union of Teachers and Unite.

For a report of the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) lobby of the TUC see pages 8&9 and see next week's issue of the Socialist for a report of TUC Congress 2016.

Police staff walkout

Guards working at Met Police control centres in Bow, east London and Hendon, north London, took strike action on 9 September in response to worsening pay, with real terms rates falling year on year and starting salaries now less than 22,000, including working nights for no extra pay. Night shift walked out from 1am and 7am, with the day shift out between 7am and 1pm. PCS reps at the control centre at Hendon reported 100% of members took strike action both on the night shift and day shift. The strike action coincided with the passing out parade for over 1,000 new police recruits and the pickets reported that they ran out of leaflets. Similarly, at Bow there was 100% turnout, with ten people on the picket line. PCS Met Police branch and Unite joined the picket line to show their support.

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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.
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  • 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.
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In The Socialist 14 September 2016:


What we think

Labour party needs democratic structures and socialist policies


Socialist Party news and analysis

#KeepCorbyn: Fight workhouse conditions

NHS chiefs warn cuts mean rationing or charges

Fund smaller classes - not new grammars

Benefit cap could shut 67% of women's refuges

Them & Us

What We Saw


International socialist news and analysis

New 'strongman' president threatens martial law - while leaning on left parties for support

International news in brief


Socialist Party feature

Obesity crisis: government strategy offers no solution


Workplace news and analysis

Westbourne Park bus dispute continues

NSSN lobby of the TUC: an urgent time for our movement

Library workers defeat Tory cuts

Thousands of Post Office workers to strike against job losses

Southern Rail dispute update

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party youth and students

Why you should become a socialist student!

Students and workers unite to cut rents

Why I joined the Socialist Party

Join the Socialist Party - join the fightback


Socialist readers' comments and reviews

Fighting fascism with motorbike stunts

The Socialist inbox


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Labour loses byelection but Corbyn isn't the problem

Protest against closure of vital heart unit

Socialist Party members join disability rights week of action

#KeepCorbyn


 

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