Thursday, 30 April 2009

National rally and lobby of parliament for a publicly owned people’s railway, Tuesday May 5.

National rally and lobby of parliament for a publicly owned people’s railway, Tuesday May 5

For a People's Railway (supported by RMT & TSSA, with acknowledgemnts to RMT website)

National rally and lobby of parliament for a publicly owned people’s railway, Tuesday May 5.

Rail bosses are using the recession as an excuse to attack jobs and conditions and cut back on services and essential rail works.

Thousands of jobs are being threatened or have been lost. At the same time rail fat cats are raking in big profits and bonuses on the back of the most expensive fares in Europe. Make no mistake: as the recession worsens so will the attack on rail workers and rail services.

Join the national demonstration and lobby of parliament to demand

  • An end to cuts in rail jobs and services. A freeze in shareholder dividends with all profits instead invested to protect services and jobs.

  • An urgent industry-wide programme so our railways can provide a green stimulus to the economy to help fight the economic downturn.

  • A wholly integrated, publicly-owned and accountable People’s Railway and London Underground which put people before profit and where passengers and workers have a real voice

Rally and Lobby Details

1pm: Assemble and demonstrate outside Houses of Parliament (nearest tube Westminster)
2pm: Rally in Committee Room 14, Houses of Parliament
3pm: Lobby Your MP

If you intend to lobby your MP write as soon as possible to make an appointment to meet them on the day. Attached is a model letter.

Write to your MP (model letter, Word file)

Ask your MP to sign Early Day Motion 1271 in support of the campaign.
download campaign flyer (pdf file)

Join the rally. Defend Jobs. Defend Services. For a People’s Railway!

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Monday, 27 April 2009




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1: Join the lobby of the MPA meeting this Thursday morning!

Called by UCAPV

Assemble 9:00am, Thursday 30 April

Outside City Hall (

Calling all organisations, trade unionists and activists! We will be gathering outside City Hall from 9:00am on Thursday morning to lobby the meeting of the Metropolitan Police Authority - their first meeting since the events of the G20 demonstrations. Come and join the protest against the Met's violent policing of the demonstrations and their extensive use of batons, dogs and "kettling".

In particular, come and make your voice heard against the Met's Territorial Support Group (TSG) which supposedly specialises in public order. Ian Tomlinson collapsed and died after being hit and pushed by a TSG officer who has since been questioned on suspicion of manslughter. If we're going to get justice and defend our right to protest we need to keep the pressure up on the Met.

Please bring trade union banners, and forward this information far and wide. A press release will be out soon - please also forward this to all relevant contacts.

Also, please see below a message from Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the London Assembly, who will be at the protest.


2: Fantastic response at Millwall on Saturday with Bob Crow!

On Saturday members and supporters of the UCAPV, including Bob Crow, General Secretary of the RMT, went to The Den, homeground of Millwall FC, to give out leaflets about the campaign and forthcoming events.

Ian Tomlinson was a big Millwall fan, as is Bob Crow, and the support for the campaign was immense. We got rid of well over 1,000 leaflets within half an hour, with many Millwall fans coming back for more. The press were in attendance too with Bob being interviewed for both Channel 4 News and The Times. In fact, the only people who weren't happy to see us were a few shifty Met officer pacing around the ground.

Thanks to everyone who came along to help on Saturday. More information including hopefully a picture or two will be on the website soon.


3: Stop Police Violence!!!

Public meeting, 7:00pm, Tuesday 5 May

Friends Meeting House, Euston Road (opposite Euston station)

Speakers include:

Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the London Assembly
Bob Crow, RMT General Secretary
Anna Fairclough, Liberty
Sam Rigg-David, Sean Rigg Justice and Change Campaign, UCAPV
Andrew Murray, Stop the War Coalition Chair
Brenda Weinberg, United Friends and Family Campaign
Martin Smith, SWP National Secretary
Other speakers to confirm…
This rally is both the public launch of the UCAPV and a chance to pull hundreds of people together to go through the important political issues and questions that face us, and to build and strengthen our resistance. It will also be a vital launch pad for our national demonstration.

A new leaflet will be available soon.


4: National demonstration against police violence

3pm, Saturday 23 May

Remember Ian Tomlinson - no more deaths in police custody
Freedom to protest - defend civil liberties
Assemble 3:00pm in Trafalgar Square, central London. March to New Scotland Yard via Downing Street.

This is our chance to put thousands on the streets of the capital, against police violence and in defence of our civil liberties and right to demonstrate. We will march past Downing Street, right up to the headquarters of the Metropolitan police. We know that we can't rely on the "Independent" Police Complaints Commission or hand-picked government bodies... mass mobilisation will be the key to our success.

Leaflets and posters will be available soon. Activists in London need to begin spreading the word, using the publicity, and using the model motion to get trade and student union backing. Activists outside London need to start thinking about booking transport to get down to London - ideally fundraising or getting union backing to fund coaches. If you are trying to get down to the demo from outside London please get in touch. We aim to post a list of coaches coming down soon. Watch this space!


5: Have you contacted the IPCC?

If you have lodged a complaint with the IPCC about your treatment at the G20 protests, please let us know. The solicitors dealing with the investigation into the death of Ian Tomlinson would like to gather as much information on this as possible. Email us at


6: Affiliations and supporters

In just a week of existence the campaign has attracted a lot of support. Trade union branches have started affiliating to the campaign, including London Underground Engineering branch of the RMT, Jubilee South & East London Line RMT, George Green's School NUT. We expect more to come, so please find the model motion on our website! Greater Manchester Stop the War Coalition and London Green Party are now also official supporters. Spread the word!

7: Message from Jenny Jones, Green Party member of the London Assembly

Jenny Jones, Green representative on the MPA will be addressing the lobby prior to the MPA meeting this Thursday and would like to update all those concerned about the policing of the G20 protests on April 1st and those who have written to her. A call to write to members of the MPA then follows. Please use this opportunity to impress upon all members of the MPA the importance of our campaign ahead of the meeting and as they convene it.

JENNY JONES: "I'm writing to bring you up to date with the actions which I am taking to ensure that the police are both brought to account for their past actions and more professional in handling future protests.

"I've written two letters to the Commissioner outlining key questions about the G20 protests. I've also written to the London Mayor making practical suggestions about changing public order policing in the short term.

"Along with Dee Doocey, I have put forward the following motion [below] to the next public meeting of the Metropolitan Police Authority, 10am on 30th April at City Hall. This motion falls short of the full public inquiry which some of you have called for, and falls short of my own aims, but I'm keen for the MPA to pass something which takes the debate forward and developing that consensus is going to be quite challenging.

"Don’t forget that I am only one member of the MPA and there are lots of other members who would love to hear your views. The London Mayor chairs the MPA, then there are 11 elected politicians, who are members of the London Assembly and 11 independent members whose appointment is approved by the London mayor.

Contact details below are taken from the MPA website:

"Thanks again for taking the time and trouble to write in. Let's hope for an end to repressive policing here in London."

Jenny Jones

Members Services
Metropolitan Police Authority

MOTION TO MPA: “This Authority recognises that the job of policing the G20 demonstrations on 1st April was difficult but believes that the strategy and tactics adopted by the Metropolitan Police were fundamentally wrong. This Authority notes that the Commissioner has asked HMIC to review public order policing, and that the IPCC are investigating a number of specific complaints. In order to begin the process of restoring public confidence the HMIC review must take evidence in a public forum from all concerned, including protesters, and closely examine other recent protests to consider the growing concern that police tactics have become more aggressive in recent years. The HMIC review should make recommendations that would form the basis of long-term policies on the policing of protest in recognition of the following principles:

1. Demonstrations and other peaceful forms of protest are a fundamental democratic right, which all public bodies are under a duty to facilitate and protect.

2. Policing of demonstrations must always be proportionate, and must discriminate between the need to facilitate peaceful protest and prevent criminal acts committed by a minority.

3. The police must use aggressive tactics such as kettling’, baton charges, and attacks with dogs only when they are absolutely necessary and proportionate. The seizure of personal property from demonstrators is not acceptable. The use of aggressive or intimidatory tactics against peaceful protesters is provocative, inappropriate, and counter-productive, since it increases the tension and likelihood of violence.

4. Any officers not clearly identifying themselves by wearing an identification number are committing a disciplinary offence.

5. The police must exercise due care and attention when making statements to the media since predictions of violence can be self-fulfilling. The police must never exaggerate the likelihood of violence, nor should they dissemble the facts after a demonstration has occurred.

6. The police must consider Britain’s reputation abroad and not commit acts that set a poor example and thus undermine our country’s efforts to promote human rights.

If these principles are not fully incorporated into the HMIC review and any recommendations that arise from it, then this Authority will re-examine what further steps need to be taken, including the possibility of instigating a further review.”


Please write to and include the Member's name in the subject header. See if member links not live below.

Boris Johnson Mayor of London (London Assembly)

Vice Chairman
Kit Malthouse Deputy Mayor for Policing and Conservative Member of London Assembly

London Assembly members
Jennette Arnold – Labour constituency Assembly Member for Waltham Forest, Hackney and Islington
Victoria Borwick - Conservative Londonwide Assembly Member
James Cleverly - Conservative constituency Assembly Member for Bexley and Bromley
Dee Doocey - Liberal Democrat Londonwide Assembly Member
John Biggs – Labour constituency Assembly Member for Barking and Dagenham, City of London, Newham, Tower Hamlets

Jenny Jones – Green Party Londonwide Assembly Member
Joanne McCartney – Labour constituency Assembly Member for Enfield and Haringey
Stephen O'Connell – Conservative constituency Assembly Member for Croydon and Sutton
Caroline Pidgeon - Liberal Democrat Londonwide Assembly Member
Richard Tracey – Conservative constituency Assembly Member for Merton and Wandsworth

Independent members
Reshard Auladin
Faith Boardman
Christopher Boothman
Valerie Brasse
Cindy Butts
Toby Harris
Kirsten Hearn
Neil Johnson
Clive Lawton
Deborah Regal
Graham Speed

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Design for new GPTU banner by Romayne Phoenix. Please let GPTU know your view about this by our next meeting on May 1st.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

London Met UCU and Unison appeal for support

This email is to update you on the situation UCU (and Unison) members are facing at London Metropolitan University and to ask for your support - please see the end of this email for things we would like you to do ASAP.

As you may know, London Metropolitan University is currently in major financial difficulty following the loss of around £15M/annum from Hefce, with an additional £38M claw-back, as a result of 'over-funding'. Management's response to this is to insist on the loss of 550 FTE staff
(the equivalent of around 800 individual members of staff, 1:4 of the entire workforce!).

We, as per the legislation on the possibility of mass redundancies, have been in formal (Section 188) consultations with management to

a) seek to avoid redundancies, and failing that
b) seek to minimise redundancies.

Unfortunately, management appear to have seen these consultations as merely a legal nicety to be overcome, and as such have in essence failed to accept any of our suggestions re non-staff savings, such as forgoing their own massive PRP bonuses, setting a short-term deficit budget based on our substantial (£30M+) capital receipts, etc, etc...

The situation has now come to a head with management unilaterally, in the middle of talks ostensibly seeking to avoid redundancies, announcing an immediate VR scheme (at 5.30pm on the eve of the Easter vacation!) - with no guarantees that it will either be fully funded, or those rejected will not then be liable to be made compulsorily redundant, and the concurrent
release of detailed department-level 'redundancy plans' outlining exactly where (and in some cases exactly whose) jobs are to be deleted. Hardly a voluntary situation when it is stated your job is directly targeted and if you don't take VR you are likely to end up being made compulsorily redundant with the legal minimum compensation!

We have therefore been left with no choice but to procede to balloting our members for industrial action. We hope that a strong vote for action will persuade management to reverse their current stance. However, if they are still unwilling to do so we will use everything at our disposal to save our members jobs and our university from these wreckers of education.

For more details on our campaign please refer to both our main branch website: and our joint UCU/Unison campaign blog:

What you can do

In the meantime there are a number of things we would like you to do to support our fight:

1. Please send messages of support to us at: We intend to publish these on our website so the more the better!

2. Please send email protests to our acting VC, Bob Aylett: (see suggested draft at the end of this

3. Please ask all your branch members to add their names to the national petition hosted on the main UCU website
( It currently stands at some
2,500 signatures, it would be very good to get this up to around 10,000
over the next week or so.

4. For those based in London we would like to invite you to join us in
march for jobs and education on Saturday 23rd May. Further details
available at:

In solidarity


Mark Campbell
UCU Co-ordinating Committee - London Metropolitan University
UCU National Executive


Dear Acting Vice Chancellor,

We are saddened to learn that London Metropolitan University is in crisis and you intend to make large-scale redundancies which will no doubt make things worse. We understand the crisis is entirely of your own making and not a direct result of the recession.

We gather that the plans for cuts of up 550 full time equivalent posts were approved by your last Vice Chancellor, Brian Roper, who has since resigned without explanation.

We call on you as temporary managers to halt plans to make such damaging cuts to the staff and reverse the policy of aggression towards your unions.

We believe that the untested, controversial changes of the scale that you have outlined - including the outsourcing of IT services, increased workloads for teaching, increasing student to staff ratios, the closure of critical educational facilities such as libraries and entire courses -
these plans are a recipe for disaster and should not be rushed through by an interim management team.

Indeed, we would like to know who exactly will take responsibility for the financial crisis at your institution? We note that, despite leaving, Brian Roper did not take responsibility for the current crisis and we further suggest the current team of interim managers might also shoulder some of
the blame.

We support the calls of Jeremy Corbyn MP for a public enquiry into how this all came about.

Whoever is culpable for the current mess it is certainly not the staff or the students who you currently expect to pay the price. We call on you to halt the current plans to cut jobs and outsource, and to start listening seriously to your staff, who have put forward a whole host
of alternative suggestions for managing the financial situation in the short-term whilst a fully considered recovery plan with maximum staff and student input is constructed, rather than constantly attacking their democratically elected union representatives.

Yours sincerely,

Thursday, 16 April 2009

GPTU statement re RMT and Euro elections

The GREEN PARTY TRADES UNION GROUP has been shocked and disappointed by the decision of the RMT to stand candidates in the forthcoming euro elections. We had hoped for RMT support for a coherent environmental plan, including an ecologically sustainable public and publically owned transport system. We fear that the current RMT electoral platform does not offer this within the context of a sensible political program and may have damaging consequences such as splitting votes and allowing the election of far right racist candidates, or endangering the seats of green Euro MPs who have a very good record of promoting workers’ rights in Europe.

Inspite of this GPTU will continue to actively support the RMT’s legitimate Trade Union activities and its campaigning for an ecologically sustainable public and publically owned transport system, but we cannot currently advise a vote for RMT candidates, which would currently be a wasted and dangerous vote.

P.Murry (Secretary) pp GPTU tel 07736525187

GPTU statement re Visteon

The GREEN PARTY TRADES UNION GROUP pledges its support and solidarity with the Visteon workers who have taken occupation of their factory to mark their defiance against losing their jobs at short notice, without wages owed or compensation. We regret that the Visteon workers have now been evicted and support their continuing picket of the Enfield factory.

GPTU also rejects any attempts by the parent company to use the economic crisis as an excuse to impose reduced conditions upon the workers in order to protect the interests of their shareholders.

In a week that has revealed figures indicating the biggest drop in UK industrial production in four decades - including a 12.5% drop in output on the previous year in February alone, the biggest loss since records began - it is clear that it is the workers who are bearing the brunt of this crisis.

Instead of redundancy and a sense of alienation, we need our skilled workforce to help build a sustainable alternative to the current mode of production, not throw them onto the scrapheap. Their vital skills can be used to produce socially and environmentally useful components, and to build the public transport and renewable energy infrastructure that is essential to achieving this sustainable alternative. In the same spirit that inspired the Lucas Aerospace workers in 1976 to democratically organise and plan to convert production from military equipment to socially useful products, GPTU strongly supports any move by the Visteon workers to organise to develop their own strategy, and to use their skills to produce for the benefit of people and planet, and not be dictated to by the drive to produce profits.

GPTU supports the Visteon workers in their struggle, and other workers who take a similar action to defend their jobs against the self-interest of those who exploit them for profit.

Workers for the world unite.

P.Murry (Secretary) pp GPTU tel 07736525187

NB Visteon workers’ speakers have been invited to the Green left meeting 2pm Saturday 18th April Lucas Arms Grays Inn Rd London WCI


Ron Clark of Visteon has agreed to speak at our CCCTU meeting on 25th April

The meeting is 12 noon till 4pm on Saturday 25th April in University of London Union, (in the Bloomsbury Suite), Malet Street, London WC1E 7HY

Wednesday, 15 April 2009


28th APRIL 2009

Gather 10.30 am at the statue of the unknown building worker at Tower Hill next to the Tower of London, Tower Bridge. Rally with speakers.

March from Tower Hill to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) headquarters in Southwark St. Continue the march to City Hall, London, SE1 for Rally with speakers from 12 noon
CONTACT: 077 477 95954

April 28th 2009

Every year throughout the world more people die from work activity than die in wars. The International Labour Organisation (ILO), estimated that, globally, about 2.2 million people die every year from occupational accidents and diseases, with 270 million workers suffering serious non-fatal injuries and another 160 million workers suffering from short or long term illness from work-related causes.
In Britain the Health and Safety Executive (HSE), our safety police, say in the last 25 years, over 2,800 people have died from injuries received as a result of construction work. In 2007/8 there were 72 construction fatalities. Many more have been injured or made ill. The government say there are currently 4,000 deaths a year from asbestos exposure.

The government, in its drive to de-regulate and cut costs has become even more business friendly. Cuts to the budget of the HSE mean HSE inspectors visiting workplaces and enforcing the law has declined (overall from 1,483 inspectors in 2004 to 1,238 in 2008). The number of HSE prosecutions is also in decline (overall 1,720 offences prosecuted in 2003/4 to 1,028 in 2007/8). All of this in a period when accident rates remain high. The courts still fine some companies a few thousand pounds following a worker death. The number of jailing following a worker death is not much more than a dozen.


The Mayor of London has control over two massive public sector projects – the Olympics site and Crossrail. It is necessary to remind the Mayor we want these projects built safely with fair employment practices for all.


The Economic Collapse threatens your Health and Safety; it’s the filthy rich that caused it – It’s not foreign workers, But its workers in all countries who are being made to pay for it. Resist and get organised join a Trade Union and establish active workplaces and community committees, Demand that there is no increase in workplace fatalities and major injuries. Demand the government not allow our jobs to be lost with all the poverty and ill heath this will cause. Demand not just the nationalisation of the banks but also all major industries. Demand the end of privatisation of all public sector bodies. Demand the reinstatement and expansion of construction direct labour organisations and all other public services. End all agency and bogus self-employment by having workers directly employed.
Workers and trade union safety reps must be given more rights in law to defend themselves.

The government must repeal the anti-trade union laws.

The government must fund the HSE properly and change its enforcement policy to be more "big stick" and less "carrot".

The courts must jail employers who negligently kill workers and increase the level of fines.

Remember the dead – but fight for the living

The construction safety campaign is calling on workers from all the different industrial backgrounds, Trades Unions, workplaces and community groups to support this event

CONTACT: 077 477 95954

I should be able to attend. We could bring the London GP Banner ??

Romayne Phoenix, Campaigns
London Fed
07985 053 907

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Green Party anger at Aviva jobs cuts

Green Party anger at Aviva jobs cuts

This week Aviva announced another 1,100 job losses in the UK with 571 at its York offices, 15% of the York workforce. This huge wave of job losses is the latest in what has become regular occurrence at York with now over 1500 jobs cuts since 2006.

Green Party Trade Union Group North East spokesperson Andrew Collingwood stated 'There is absolutely no excuse for the continuing waves of jobs cuts. The dedicated staff at York have helped build Aviva and make it the success it is today with its annually increasing profits. Instead of praise and job security for their contributions they face the constant threat of redundancy, while Aviva continues to reward its shareholders and waste money on re branding and expensive celebrity advertising campaigns'.

Andy Chase, Green Parliamentary Candidate for York Central, said: "This is bad news for York's economy and terrible news for Aviva employees when the company is spending a large amount of money on advertising and re branding itself."

"Concerted government action is now needed to help people in those areas hit hardest by job losses. There is much work that can be done to create employment and stimulate the economy. As well as supporting local businesses directly, there are also many other useful tasks, such as getting the housing stock in better shape. The government now needs to get in touch with local authorities and find ways of making this happen."

Friday, 3 April 2009

Pictures from the Campaign Against Climate Change Conference March 7 2009

the Campaign Against Climate Change Conference March 7 2009 Kings College London at

2nd Trade Union Conference

The huge social and economic changes that are needed to dramatically reduce carbon
emissions are of vital interest to trade unionists, as are the methods by which they can be achieved. This conference is a chance to engage and debate with each other on these crucial issues. Campaigners and researchers from the trade union movement will address a series of workshops on a variety of related issues.

We are also hosting three forums to examine crucial debates for those concerned about the environment. The discussions around the future for nuclear power, coal and aviation are controversial ones within our movement. We hope that these debates will help clarify the issues for delegates.

As the world looks forward to the signing of the Kyoto Treaty’s replacement later this year, our closing plenary will look at proposals for a new treaty and how trade unionists can support and join the international protests calling on world governments to sign a climate treaty that will have social justice at its heart.

Speakers include

Chris Baugh (PCS), Tony Kearns (CWU), Jean Lambert MEP, Ian Lavery (NUM),
Mark Lynas, John McClean (GMB), John McDonnell MP, Caroline Molloy,
Ann Pettifor, Dave Prentis (UNISON), Phil Thornhill (CCC), Matt Wrack (FBU)

Affiliated unions include

CWU, Connect, FBU, PCS, RMT and UCU

King’s College London, Franklin-Wilkins Building, Stamford Street, London SE1

Help Workers Factory Occupation London

From Roy Wilkes CCCTU
Howard, who wrote the original message that follows, might be a little optimistic in proclaiming this ‘the beginning of the workers revolution’ but the other points he makes are valid and we should do everything we can to support this occupation.

-------- Original Message --------
[climatecamp-london] SUPER URGENT - Help Workers Factory Occupation London
Thu, 2 Apr 2009 21:13:30 +0100
Howard Rees
Please forward this to all your lists IMMEDIATELY

Workers at Visteon factory Enfield London have seized control of the factory following major lay-offs and need help to resist eviction expected from 10am either tomorrow or Saturday.This is the beginning of the workers revolution and we must support it and build links betwen it and the Green revolution.The factory has formerly manufactured car parts, but it could be used to make wind turbines.If we hold this factory, others will follow. If not, a huge opportunity and momentum will be lost.They need NUMBERS and they nees them NOWFactory is on Morson Road . 5 mins from Ponders End rail station - cross footbridge, take main rd twds Central London , Morson Rd on left, factory at bottom end.For more info call mobile phone in factory - 07799 896 466.Bring everyone you know and please try to arrive for 10am tomorrow.Love Howard

Thursday, 2 April 2009


Dear all,

It would be grand if people could send solidarity emails to and on Friday, as explained in the callout below, demanding that the cleaners at the Willis Building are reinstated. Even better if you happen to be off on Friday and can attend
the demo in person!


Matt Sellwood



5 Unite union cleaners including the shop steward have been sacked from the Willis building by the contractor Mitie for organising for better conditions.


"We are 4 women and one man dismissed from your building because we were trying to get better conditions for all the MITIE Cleaning and Support Services workers. After we asked for an increase of wages they changed the working shifts from 7 to 11 pm to work overnight 10 to 6 am: a clear move to attack and stop us claiming our rights. Then they sent us the P45 dismissing us on grounds of redundancy. Following our letter dated 26th January we did not get any alternative or answer, so we have decided to start a series of demon¬strations outside Willis's building until we get our jobs back. We are appealing to your common sense – we have families to support and children to feed. We are completely sure about the unfairness of the company

If you cannot go then please email and on Friday demanding that the cleaners at the Willis
Building are reinstated.