On 2 December, 20 protestors entered the offices of Amey plc in High Holborn to protest at the sacking of five Colombian cleaners and the rejection of their appeal. The protestors attempted to present a petition to an Amey representative, but were prevented.
The cleaners had been employed by Amey at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and were suspended then sacked for daring to criticise Amey for putting an excessive workload onto ever fewer staff, for unilaterally changing terms and conditions, and for failing to respect grievance procedures. The workers are all members of the Prospect union and some of Unite-T&G as well.
To intimidate workers at the NPL, most of them from Latin America, Amey have resorted to calling in immigration authorities. Last year the company invited workers to a “training session”, bolted the doors behind them and left them in the care of the Home Office, which deported three of them, one to Colombia and two to Brazil, for not having official documents.
Amey is a majority shareholder in Tubelines, which cleans parts of London Underground. Tube cleaners who went on strike for a living wage this summer were also faced with a corporate response consisting of paper checks, immigration raids and deportations to Sierra Leone and the Congo.
The campaign against Amey is being coordinated among others by the Campaign Against Immigration Controls (CAIC): http://www.caic.org.uk.
The next protest is on Monday 8 December at Amey's HQ in Oxford.
11am, Monday 8 December, Amey HQ, Sherard Building, Oxford Science Park, Edmund Halley Road, OX4 4DQ
Regular buses run to the Science Park (no 106, which leave the train station at 37 miles past every hour and stop at St Aldates around 45 miles past), and it's cyclable from the town centre. Bring instruments and noise making equipment!