Defending jobs

Tube unions plan funding campaign

Unions organising across Transport for London and London Underground will hold a joint online rally on 15 July, to launch a campaign for increased funding for TfL and against cuts. At the time of going to press, RMT, Aslef, and Unite were backing the rally, with TSSA also expected to come on board. Exact details, including the time, had yet to be confirmed. Since the Tories abolished the central government subsidy to TfL, it has been almost wholly reliant on funding from fares and commercial revenue streams, meaning it was plunged into a profound financial crisis when passenger levels dropped...

Halting the Job Cuts Express

We know that job cuts are coming, thundering down the track towards us like a runaway freight train, loaded with attacks on our pay, conditions and pensions as well.

Wabtec has already announced job cuts at its Doncaster site, Heathrow Express is threatening to cut over a hundred posts, and we...

Defend Wabtec jobs!

Bosses at the Wabtec rail refurbishment factory in Doncaster have announced a plan to cut 450 jobs in several waves, starting in August and running through to March 2021. The cuts would halve the workforce.

The plans are now out for consultation, and responding should be quick and easy: not one...

Goldsmiths action grows

Fixed term teaching staff have joined the marking boycott at Goldsmiths, started by Associate Lecturers (ALs) and Graduate Trainee Tutors (GTTs). They are also “working to rule”, performing only contractual duties. The college, part of University of London, has been planning cuts since the start of the year and wants to sack 163 academics on fixed term contracts and 309 ALs and GTTs. The college is putting through the sacking by allowing the contracts of these staff to expire. According to research by staff at Goldsmiths, around 75% of those being laid off are from a BME background. That is a...

Poll scores won't save jobs

A survey — see here — by manufacturing bosses’ organisation Make UK published on 15 June indicates a big flood of job cuts in the next three months, July to September. They report only 11.7% of firms operating at capacity; 81% vs 39% predicting further falls in output in the next three months; a quarter of firms already having decided on redundancies; and only one-third saying they won’t make redundancies in the coming months. This week, starting 15 June, is the last time for bosses to send out the “HR1” letters required by law for large-scale redundancies if they are to take effect before the...

Move against cuts at Goldsmiths

Associate Lecturers (ALs) and Graduate Trainee Teachers (GTTs) at Goldsmiths University, London, plan to take action against the freezing of their short-term teaching contracts, against the withholding of payment for hours worked under lockdown (promised but not delivered), and against the decision by management not to use the government furlough scheme to help these precarious workers. At the start of the year Goldsmiths management announced a programme of cuts (“Evolving Goldsmiths”). Then they withdrew under pressure from the unions. Financial uncertainty at the college has increased as a...

More jobs, less work (Women's Fightback)

Economic research at the University of Essex has warned of job losses of around the 6.5 million mark as a result of Covid-19. That would equate to about a quarter of the UK’s total jobs, with more than half of the positions in certain sectors being lost. The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) found that the virus lockdown has so far hit younger workers the hardest. They are nearly two-and-a-half times more likely to work in a shutdown area. The IFS also found that the virus was likely to have a bigger effect on women’s earnings because of a disproportionate amount of women working in retail...

Aviation: a third option

At the end of April, British Airways announced intentions to lay off 12,000 people, up to 30% of its workforce. Heathrow’s Chief Executive has warned that they may decide to follow suit, while on 20 May Rolls Royce — which constructs, among other things, airplane components — announced plans to make redundant 9,000, or 17%, of their global workforce. Airbus is planning redundancies. Easyjet, a UK-based company, plans 4,500 redundancies, 30% of their workforce. In 2018 it was estimated that the UK aviation sector directly employs 341,000 people. Bailouts to the tune of tens of billions have...

The Doctors Laboratory votes for strikes

Medical couriers transporting Covid-19 samples on behalf of NHS pathology contractor The Doctors Laboratory (TDL) have voted overwhelmingly for strike action, in response to the company’s decision to make redundancies during the pandemic, and its failure to address health and safety concerns. The IWGB union, on behalf of eight of its members who are being targeted for redundancy, has also filed a trade union victimisation and whistleblower victimisation claim. Almost all of the ten targeted workers had been demanding better and safer working conditions. One of them, Alex Marshall, is a key...

Protect Night Tube workers’ jobs!

From the Tubeworker blog London Underground has told a meeting of the Trains Functional Council, the negotiating body for drivers, comprised of senior bosses plus reps from the Aslef and RMT unions, that it plans to mothball Night Tube, the 24-hour services which run on certain Tube lines on Fridays and Saturdays, and which have been suspended for months, until March 2021. There’s every reason to continue the suspension. The late-night economy that Night Tube principally serves will not be restarting any time soon, and forcing Night Tube workers to run a service would certainly not be in the...

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