The ‘Pop-Up Union’: Sussex University.

PRESS RELEASE: Sussex ‘Pop-Up Union’ to fight outsourcing

The Pop-Up Union

press@popupunion.org

07813 507501

Workers at the University of Sussex have formed a new union in a bid to halt the outsourcing of 235 campus jobs. The initiative comes from rank-and-file members of the three recognised campus trade unions, with the support of students from the now six-week old Occupy Sussex movement.

Announcing the move at a mass demonstration on Monday 25th March, a spokesperson said: “The Pop-Up Union is a result management’s refusal to engage meaningfully with staff, students, and the recognised trade unions for over 10 months. We are now taking things into our own hands.”

“A recent poll found that 70% of students oppose the plans. Numerous academics have voiced their opposition, and the local MP has sponsored an Early Day Motion in the Houses of Parliament. But university management are pushing ahead with this unpopular and unnecessary proposal.”

“We are urging all Sussex staff to join the Pop-Up Union so that we can stand together against the attack on workers terms and conditions that outsourcing represents.”

Notes for editors

1. Outsourcing background. University of Sussex management proposed in May 2012 to outsource 235 campus jobs, including porters, cleaners, security and catering. The Pop-Up Union believes outsourcing will lead to erosion of workers terms and conditions and is calling for the services to remain in-house.

2. Legal background #1. Trade Unions are defined in law under the  Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992. The Pop-Up Union has been formed in accordance this definition. 

3. Legal background #2. The Pop-Up Union is in the process of becoming ‘listed’ with the Certification Officer, who maintains a  list of all known Trade Unions.

4. Campaign info. Occupy Sussex have been in occupation of the Bramber House conference centre since 8 February 2013, and have received support from well over 300 academics, trade unions and public figures including comedian Frankie Boyle, actor Peter Capaldi, and public intellectual Noam Chomsky. Letter to Staff at the University of Sussex

5. Local MP. Local MP Caroline Lucas has tabled an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons opposing the plans, which at the time of writing had attracted 11 signatories:

6. Campus trade unions. Three trade unions are recognised by the University of Sussex – UCU, Unite, and Unison. The Pop-Up Union includes members of all three, and does not intend to replace the recognised unions, but to provide a means for workers across campus to lawfully oppose the outsourcing proposals.

7. Union fees. Dues are set at just 50p per month, making the Pop-Up affordable to every staff member on campus.

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Urgent call out from Latin American Workers Association.

URGENTE REDADAS DE MIGRACION
Compañeras y compañeros

el rumor ampliamente diseminado de que el UKBA (autoridades de inmigracion) tiene planeado realizar una redada en ‘Old Kent Road’ el dia sabado 2 de Feb. Algunos negocios estan alertando a sus clientes sobre esto. Convocamos a un piquete urgente para protestar contra este acoso por parte de las autoridades de inmigracion. Sabado 2 de Feb 2pm en Old Kent Road a la entrada de Tesco

(La semana pasada UKBA realizo una redada en Elephant and Castle, UKBA utilizaron 3 camionetas, donde varios Latinoamericanos fueren detenidos y una persona fue deportada.)

En solidaridad

LAWAS

Dear brothers and sisters

there is a rumor that UKBA is planning to have an immigration raid in South London, Old Kent road. The business owners on the area are alerting their customers. We therefore urge you to come to our picket: Saturday 2 Feb, at 2pm Outside Tesco in Old Kent Road.

(Last week UKBA raided Elephant and Castle and used three vehicles to transport detainees and at least one person was deported).

In solidarity

LAWAS Latin American Workers Association info@lawas.org.uk

Co-Op – Don’t Renew The Atos Contract! – Pickets – Everywhere 17th/19th January.

Picket times – From 5p.m. on Thursday 17th January to catch people going home from work and late night shoppers. And anytime on Saturday 19th January.

Get our flyer here! Courtesy of Solent SolFed

The Co-Op have said that their new occupational health contract starts in March and that the bidding process for the new contract has already begun. The Co-Op have refused to publicly rule out a bid from Atos. Tendering processes are generally geared towards awarding the contract to the lowest bidder. If the Co-Op were going to make their decision based on ethical concerns, which they have said will be a factor, they would have already publicly rejected a bid from Atos. Atos’s unethical behaviour has already been well documented in the mainstream media and Disabled People Against Cuts have compiled a list of Atos’s unethical behaviour for the Co-Op. Pickets with calls for boycotts and communication blockades and the resulting damage to a company’s reputation does have a significant economic impact and has been shown to work with other campaigns. The Co-Op is particularly vulnerable to such tactics as their ethical image is their unique selling point in their part of the market.

Details of the Communications blockade on Thursday 17th January from 9 a.m. to 5p.m. can be found here:
https://www.facebook.com/events/357131177718217/

Some background information:

It has recently been discovered that the Co-Op Bank and group of companies have had a 4 year occupational health contract with Atos and that the contract is due for renewal. Atos make huge profits carrying out work capability assessments on sick and disabled people on behalf of the Government. As was exposed by a Channel 4 documentary they automatically pass 7 out of 8 people as fit for work – to comply with Government targets for benefit cuts. Their decisions are not based on objective medical opinion. Citizens Advice Bureau Scotland have received 24,000 complaints about Atos. CAB win 80% of appeals against Atos finding people fit for work. The Daily Record reported on a Government survey that showed half of those found fit for work by Atos end up destitute.

The Government are cutting benefits as part of their austerity measures aimed mainly at the poor, while those responsible for the public debt continue to get richer. Despite the media headlines about one or two bankers losing their bonuses, generally bankers’ bonuses and those of company directors continue to grow. Sales in luxury goods are also rising. Nearly 50,000 new property millionaires were created in the UK in 2012. £2 billion of cuts in housing benefit and child tax credit where announced in the chancellor’s autumn statement, while £3 billion of cuts in corporation tax was announced in the same statement.

The Co-Op sells itself as an ethical company, but what ethical standards are they maintaining by not publicly ruling out awarding a new contract that gives millions to a company that cuts the benefits of sick and disabled people?

Claimants Resisting Unfair Treatment, Cuts and Harassment
https://www.thecrutchcollective.blogspot.co.uk

Supported by:
Clydeside Industrial Workers Of The World

https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/Clydeside-IWW/216550781713688

Glasgow Solidarity Federation:
https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/Glasgow-Solidarity-Federation/237568036376381

Facebook Event Page:  https://www.facebook.com/events/488541864531259/

The Glasgow picket will be at the Co-Op’s new flagship food store at 143 Sauchiehall Street. At least 3 other pickets are being planned in Dundee, London and Southampton. More details to follow.

IWW John Lewis Cleaners Win Pay Rise

Monday 19 Novermber 2012 — The industrial Workers of the World are proud to announce their victory in their latest John Lewis cleaners’ campaign. On Friday 16 November, the IWW-unionised John Lewis cleaning staff employed by contractor Integrated Cleaning Management won a 9% pay rise as a result of their campaign.

The outsourced cleaners work at four different John Lewis sites in London and are employed by cleaning contractor Integrated Cleaning Management (ICM). This announcement follows a previous press release on Monday 12 November, in which IWW lodged a fresh pay dispute on behalf the IWW unionised cleaners at John Lewis, and a further press release on Wednesday 14 November, in which the IWW announced our intention to ballot the John Lewis cleaning staff for industrial action. The attached campaign press release can be downloaded at the bottom of this article.

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Monday 19 November 2012

John Lewis Cleaners in New Pay Dispute

Today, Monday 12th November, the Industrial Workers of the World union (IWW) have lodged a fresh pay dispute on behalf of outsourced cleaners at John Lewis. This follows an IWW cleaners strike at John Lewis in Oxford Street earlier in the year – the first strike in John Lewis history.

In the run up to Christmas and January sales, John Lewis can expect to see profits spike, bringing in £millions. Meanwhile, our members working in their buildings are earning minimum wage of just £6.19 p/h.

Budget cuts have seen their workloads increase, leading to stress, sickness and depression. But with no sick pay, they have to carry on regardless. Meanwhile, poverty pay means home life is a daily struggle.

The cleaners, working at four John Lewis sites in South London including the famous Peter Jones store in Sloane Square and the company HQ in Victoria, are not part of John Lewis’ famous ‘partnership’. Instead they are employed by a contractor, Integrated Cleaning Management Ltd. (ICM), part of the giant Compass Group Ltd.

But now these second class workers have had enough…

PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday 12 November 2012

IWW press release – solidarity with SOAS cleaner Lenin Escudero 07-10-2012

END SOAS MANAGEMENT COMPLICITY IN ISS DIRTY UNION BUSTING TACTICS – REINSTATE SOAS CLEANER LENIN ESCUDERO NOW!

We, the Industrial Workers of the World want to express our deep concern and strong condemnation for the suspension of the SOAS cleaner, leading activist of the Justice for Cleaners campaign and UNISON rep Lenin Escudero, who has been suspended from his job by the cleaning contractor, ISS, on the 5 September 2012 for refusing to obey to his manager’s request to carry out extra work on top of his normal duties on an unpaid basis. Lenin is being subject to a disciplinary procedure on Monday 08 October 2012 that might result in his dismissal simply for refusing to take on duties not specified in his job description… Full press release pdf

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT regarding recent developments surrounding the IWW Cleaners’ Branch

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT regarding recent developments surrounding the IWW Cleaners’ Branch – iww.org