Skip to content

A big week for the Rank and File sparks.

This is big week for the ‘Rank and File’.

Combine meeting 5th April 11.30am Unite HQ Holborn.

 At the combine meeting on Thursday 5th April our Rank and File elected reps will be pushing our 20 points, so all being will it’s these that will be used as a basis for talks in coming weeks.

 The weekly protests continue in London and other areas around the country.

In London it’s at the shard target ‘The great agency rip off’ which must be stopped. Next protest is the 4th April, The Shard at 7am.

We hear protests might be starting in North East this week, please spread this across the country. Wherever there is an agency root them out and demand direct employment.

Union organised sites are the only way to go, with elected stewards and conveners on all sites.

The Shrewsbury pickets were at CCRC [court] today aiming to get a pardon and full investigation into the trial in 72. As Shrewsbury picket and only member of the ‘Royal family’ we support ‘Ricky Tomlinson’ would say “Justice my arse”.

The Rank and File pass on our support and solidarity to them.

Get in touch with us by email siteworkers@virginmedia.com

For more info please visit….. Electricians Against The World

http ://www . jibelectrician . blogspot . com/

 That’s all for now……………………………. keep on keeping on

BESNA is dead but ‘The fight goes on’ National Rank and File meeting Manchester 17th March.

BESNA is dead but ‘The fight goes on’: National Rank and File meeting.

Manchester: Mechanics Institute: 17th March: 12 til 3 pm.

Last Wednesday in London over 120 turned out at the ‘Rank and File’ meeting. We were fortunate to have as the guest speaker Dean Mighel from the Australian Electricians Trade Union [ETU]. Mick Dooley, and Jerry Hicks also said a few words, adding to what was a very buoyant but serious mood.

Up for discussion was the ‘what next and the way forward’ following the withdraw by the rogue companies from the defeated BESNA.

Contributions from the floor thrashed out and put together a 20 point document as a basis for any future talks on a new agreement. [See below]. But please note it can be added to if you so wish.

It was voted on and unanimously agreed to use this document once the combine has been elected on 14th March at Farady House 5 minutes from Unite HQ 128 Theobalds Road, Holborn, London; at 11am. All areas can send all their Rank and File committee members to this meeting. Where 6 ‘Rank and File’ members will be elected on to the combine along with 6 Unite stewards. This will be part of any ‘Unite’ negotiating committee as and when Unite are ready to sit down with the JIB companies.

Items one to five were considered as ‘non negotiable’.

1 Rule 17 to be adhered to in its entirety.

2) An increase in the hourly rate.

3) No deskilling in any shape or form.

4) Proper apprenticeships.

5) An end to blacklisting and no body to be victimised who has been involved in the dispute so far.

6) Increase in fares and lodging allowance.

7) Sick pay scheme.

8) Fares from home for all.

9) One hourly rate across the board.

10) 35 hour basic working week.

11) Full training for stewards and safety reps with paid time off.

12) Elected reps on all large projects. & No appointed stooge convenors.

13) Decent redundancy pay.

14) Decent pension scheme.

15) Employment rights from day one.

16) Government license for electricians.

17) Government investigation into corruption in construction and an end to bogus self employment.

18) JIB employment pool.

19) Trade Union education open to all.

20) Rank and File elected members who are unemployed to be taken on by unite and assist in a recruitment campaign.

Regular reporting back from any talks must happen, and eventually a ballot must be carried out for all Unite members, irrespective of being on a JIB company or not.

It was also voted on and agreed unanimously to: Start weekly protests on large sites in london, demanding direct employment. The first protest being at The Shard, London Bridge,  a MACE site, on 14th March 7am. Mace have a number of other sites in London which will be consider targeting in the coming weeks.

Other areas might want to consider doing the same in their areas. It doesn’t have to be MACE, any contractor who thinks they can build their buildings with agency labour, paying p**s poor rates has got another think coming.   

Finally [for now]:

Although we have won this particular round of the fight the battle against agency working and blacklisting still goes on – We must ensure that we do not allow ‘Unite or the bosses’ to snatch defeat out of the jaws of victory by allowing the bosses to modernise the industry on their terms. ‘No sell outs’ this time round, or any ‘sweetheart deals’.

It is therefore vitally important that everyone tries to get to the National Rank and File meeting in the Mechanics Institute, Manchester, on the 17th March; between 12 and 3 pm.  

For more info please visit….. Electricians Against The World http ://www . jibelectrician . blogspot . com/

Get in touch with us by Email siteworkers@virginmedia.com

 

Just another week for the ‘Rank and File’ sparks. What’s coming up.

[Just] Another week for the ‘Rank and File’. What’s coming up.

Tomorrow [Monday] a date should be sorted for a ‘combine (not harvester) meeting’ which is  when we the ‘Rank and File’ will sit down and with Unite and ELECT a committee to possibly go into talks with the bosses over a new JIB deal.

There are rumours of BESNA mark 2 Well stuff that !. BESNA is dead and buried as far as we are concerned.

We expect to have half of the number on this committee made up from the ‘Rank and File’ which is only right and proper as our dispute has been led from day one by the ‘Rank and File’.

Imagine if had been left to Bernard [moving forward] McAulay, we would be still trying to build an army and looking still for starting point of the marathon “cos it’s not a sprint”.  Thank heavens for the cancerous ‘Rank and File’ group led by that wrecker Jerry Hicks! [Still waiting for that public apology Bernard]

Once the combine committee is sorted we need to arrange a national meeting for the ‘Rank and File’ members to discuss and decide what we want from any talks.

This continues our tradition of workers democracy. We must report back to the members as talks proceed and eventually we would conduct a ballot for acceptance or rejection of any deal [more democracy, crikey we will be known as the construction workers Democratic Party soon]

It’s often said that Trade Unionists’ live in the past, actually we learn from the past and we have been stitched up on numerous occasions in times gone by especially by EETPU, AEEU and Amicus, remember Hardacre? [Let’s not mention that wretch to much he might resurface!]

So we need to make sure there are ‘no sell outs’ this time round, or any ‘sweetheart deals’ all that has got to stop once and for all.

Blacklisting finally got the coverage that it has always deserved, with the Sunday Observer having it as their front page story. Well done to blacklist support group, 100 cases are being taken on by Guney Clark and Ryan if you are unsure if you are blacklisted contact information commissioner’s office asap and GCR on 0207 275 7788 ask for Liam Dunne.

This week’s meetings confirmed so far…………….

Manchester Monday 5th March 7.30pm: Unite Contracting Branch meeting Mechanics Institute.

London Wednesday 7th March 6.30pm: ‘Rank and File’ meeting Conway Hall, Holborn. All construction workers welcome. Confirmed speaker ‘Dean Mighel’ Australian electrical trade union organiser.

London Sat 10th March 8.30pm til 3am: ‘Sparks victory party’ Big Chill Bar, Grays Inn Rd, Kings Cross. Free entry: On the decks and MC for the night Sean Prophet. All welcome if you need help with travel or digs for the night contact siteworkers@virginmedia.com

For more info please visit….. Electricians Against The World http ://www . jibelectrician . blogspot . com/

Get in touch with us by Email siteworkers@virginmedia.com

That’s all for now folks keep on keeping on…………………….

BESNA RIP [rest in pieces] Sparks bring last of rougue 8 to their knees.

Tonight the remaining 5 companies from the original rogue 8 bosses have withdrawn from BESNA.

They have all been beaten by demo’s, protests and unofficial action. Ave some of that!

Sparks rank & file must now fight for a better JIB.

BESNA ‘RIP’ [rest in pieces]

No ‘U’ turn’s Unite.

72 hours that shook the bosses world: An amazing few day’s in the BESNA dispute

An amazing few days in the BESNA dispute.

Who’s streets? Our Streets!

 The fun began last Wednesday [15th] at the ECA dinner and dance, Grosvenor Hotel Park Lane. 150 construction workers gathered for 5.30pm and decided we would have our own ‘party in the Street’. MC Sean Prophet provided the great party music outside the hotel, and it wasn’t long before Park Lane was blocked off and rocking!

Click for video http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/video/2012/feb/16/electricians-protest-park-lane-video?CMP=twt_gu

Traffic soon backed up as the dancing got in to full swing to top tunes like ‘the Irish Rover’.  It was an hour before PC plod finally arrived as ‘they were stuck in traffic’! and had to come on foot!

However, after a vote we decide to give them one lane back.

They were nicking the food from our tables and we were going to let them know we weren’t happy. As the ‘dinner suited brigade’ arrived they were treated to a right barracking, chasing them all round the hotel as they scurried in side doors, to enjoy their champers and fine grub. Red Ken Livingstone was also collard as he went in to gorge himself (shame on you).

The following day [16th] we were overjoyed to hear that the High Court had finally got round to making a decision and better still had ruled in our favour.

Balfour Beatty had lost the injunction and the strike could go ahead.

By Friday 17th we heard that Balfour Beatty had withdrawn from BESNA what a result! One of the biggest construction companies in the world had crumbled and we believe it won’t be long before the others pull out as well.

Superb, our struggle had paid off, the ‘Rank and File’ were truly on the march.

Our sister unions in USA and Australia have helped enormously with demos in solidarity. We are maintaining protests for now and hope to take out no good NG Baileys next, ‘a major Blacklister’.

A campaign is being mounted with the backing of Unite, where we protest at Morrison supermarkets countrywide. NGB Have a maintenance contract with Morrison’s as well as refurbishments and new stores being built. The word on the street is SPIE are ready to pull back soon all our hard work is paying off.

When all BENSA 7 have retreated we need to push on and go for the jugular by renegotiating a brand new deal for sparks, and mechanical trades.

We need a list of demands and here’s a few suggestions, also ‘Rank and File reps’ must be part of the negotiating committee.

1) Rule 17 must be adhered to: No agency labour until a job is nearly complete, and then only small numbers, and ‘no redundancies’ while agency labour are on any site.

2) An increase in the hourly rate.

3) No deskilling.

4) Proper apprenticeships.

5) No more ‘Blacklisting or Victimisation’ of those involved in dispute so far.

6) Increase in fares, travel time and lodging allowance.

7) A sick pay scheme.

8) A single hourly rate across the board.

9) Fares from home for all.

10) A 35 hour basic week. Overtime rates increased.

11) Full training for elected stewards and safety reps with paid time off for union duties.

12) Elected reps on all projects.

13) A decent redundancy pay.

14) A decent pension scheme.

15) Full employment rights from day one.

We need more reps and lay activists on JIB committees with democracy restored to our unions. Union officers should be elected by us the members with the right of recall, not appointed by the Union, and they paid the same as us i.e. no more than a skilled worker. That way they would be more accountable to the members.

Any new deal must be put to membership for agreement and then a ballot to vote on acceptance or rejection. With patient organised work this can be achieved.

All in all a momentous week for the power of ‘Rank and File’ let’s not let this opportunity pass us by. We can transform the construction industry.

But while there is even a ‘Rogue 1’ let alone 6 still to push over the edge we are continuing to protest and NG Bailey are in our sites…………London Wednesday 22nd Feb 7am Kings Cross Platform9/10 cross rail site.

For more info please visit….. Electricians Against The World http ://www . jibelectrician . blogspot . com/

Get in touch with us by Email siteworkers@virginmedia.com

 Together united the workers will never be defeated.

Not a light bulb shall shine nor a wheel can turn without our permission.

 A massive round of applause to one and all our time has come. Not bad for a mindless bunch of individuals and a cancerous group, eh Bernard!

*And by the way Bernard we are still waiting for a public apology*.

 

Balfours have lost their court cast against the Sparks.

Balfour Beatt yEngineering Services [BBES] have lost their court case against Unite. So that means the sparks ballot result for industrial action stands.

Unite have issued 7 days notice of the commencement of strike action.

This follows hot on the heels of last nights demo at the construction bosses dinner and dance.

Choke on that!

Where are we with the ‘Sparks strike action’ and BBES?

Where are we with the Strike Ballot: All is revealed. And…………

Question “What happens when the Anti Union Laws aren’t repealed” Answer below…..

Unite sparks on BBES voted for strike action [AGAIN] last week, with 66% in favour of strike [295 votes for / 145 votes against].

And 70% [313 votes for / 131 against] voted in favour of action short of a strike.

 So are we on strike then or what…….? Not exactly…………….!

BBES ignored the result [AGAIN] and went running to the High Court [AGAIN] to prevent the strike going ahead, saying “not everyone was balloted”. And Unite? Well they said they would not even announce a strike date until after that date…………..Umm, good move, Umm, not really.

Ok but then what……………………..?

A Barrister, ‘John Hendy’ QC represented Unite at the High Court on Thursday 2nd February but there was no result forthcoming and the case was adjourned until Monday 6th February, with the decision the next day, Tuesday 7th February. Are you still following this?

 Still no strike or even a date for the strike….So what happened next…..?

The High Court judge said he could not give his decision until the following week, Monday 13th or Tuesday 14th [Valentines day, ah, nice touch!].

 So what then…………………?

If we get the decision on the 13th/14th, and the judge rules in our favour we still have to give BBES 7 days notice [by [anti union] law]. So earliest start of any strike action would be the  21st February.

However, If the decision doesn’t go our way, Unite say they will……..Ignore the decision? [We wish! No, Unite say they will ballot again.

We have to prepare for action and continue the campaign whatever happens.

A meeting was held in London this Monday and a ‘Strike Committee’ of 6 was elected from Balfour Beatty stewards, and it was agreed that as and when the official strike does begin, that there would be a programme of rolling/alternate strike action weeks.

Meaning out for a week, and then back in for a week [with an overtime ban]. Then out for a week and back in for a week, and so on.

 Protests and Demo’s must and will continue………………..

Rank and File Committee members met with Unite on Wednesday evening and it was agreed to continue with the protests.

 On Wednesday 15th February mass protests at the following sites…… Sellafield, Grangemouth, Ratcliffe and Concoco

 The objective to be to shut these sites down for the day, or longer if we can.

Note, Unite have agreed to lay on coaches to get people to these sites, contact Regional Offices. Importantly, if you get no joy immediately contact Unite [appointed official] Sharon Graham [organising team] 07976 844228 email  sharon.graham@unitetheunion.org.

And as if that were not enough. In London also on the 15th February there will be a lobby at ECA/BESNA dinner and dance at Grosvenor Hotel, Park Lane, nearest tube Marble Arch get there for 5.30pm Dress code ‘casual chic’ [and maybe hard hats].

And the moral of this story? Next time Labour are in power.

We don’t let them off the hook.

 We make sure they repeal the Anti Union laws or we don’t give em £10’s millions!

 Until then the fight goes on:

For more debate and discussion on the dispute……..visit

Electricians Against The World http ://www . jibelectrician . blogspot . com/

Get in touch with us by Email siteworkers@virginmedia.com

Spread the word ‘NO TO BESNA YES TO STRIKE ACTION’!