John McDonnell pledged full support from the Labour party to striking mixed fleet cabin crew, as a number of Labour MPs joined them in front of Parliament to demand a decent living wage from British Airways. Dennis Skinner in particular was given a big cheer by the striking crew when he called airports “the mines of the future” in terms of militancy and solidarity in the trade union movement. Please donate to the hardship fund (details at the end of the video) to help this epic strike land a significant blow against corporate greed.
Residents in the Fylde, near Blackpool, have been resisting the fracking industry for 6 years now, ever since Cuadrilla caused an earthquake with exploratory drilling. The resistance has increased over the past six months to a permanent presence at the site, using direct action to slow down the operation – and now Reclaim the Power are joining them for the whole of July as Cuadrilla try to bring the drills on site. With mass family friendly demos every Friday and direct action Monday to Thursday, watch this film to see what’s happening already and how you can join in.
Management at Ritzy cinema have SACKED three BECTU reps, and suspended another, in the long-running battle for a living wage at Picturehouse cinemas. Shadow chancellor John Mc Donnell was among the supporters on the picket line on July 1st, as he urged the entire labour movement to get behind the cinema workers. Picturehouse workers are calling on everyone to boycott ALL Picturehouse cinemas until their demands are met and all Ritzy reps are reinstated – which means don’t go and see films there, and don’t eat and drink in their cafes. The Human Rights film festival have already promised to move their festival to other cinemas if the dispute isn’t resolved – you can follow their example by going to watch films in cinemas that do pay their staff a living wage.
The BBC are refusing to allow people to say how many dead there might be in the horrific fire at Grenfell Tower, so let’s say what everyone’s thinking – we are probably looking at around 200 bodies. Last night there was a very angry and emotional march from the Home Office, via 10 Downing St and the BBC, all the way to Grenfell Tower, with passers-by and drivers cheering and clapping the marchers all the way, where they joined a vigil of local residents. An amazing show of solidarity by thousands at very short notice. Today (Saturday) there is another demonstration at Kensington & Chelsea town hall at Midday – and then we have to keep doing this. We need justice, we need this disgusting “government” out and we need tory ministers in jail – and that’s just for starters.
The movement to save the NHS is beginning to look unstoppable. One of the key campaigns is in the Tory heartland of Lincolnshire – and the epicentre is Thatcher’s birthplace, Grantham. A few days before the election, 100 campaigners on motorbikes deliver mountains of biscuits to A&E staff across the county to thank them for their hard work – and in the process point out the nightmare situation developing in their hospitals, proving beyond doubt that the Tories are planning to privatise the entire NHS.
Huddersfield is one of the towns at the forefront of the growing social movement to stop the privatisation of the NHS. A vibrant campaign has grown to fight the demolition of their local hospital and cuts to local surgeries; now they are linking up with other campaigns to defend the NHS on a national basis.
Is this the beginnings of a rank and file movement that can take on the Tories? Activists and workers in struggle from all over the country respond to the call from the Durham teaching assistants to march with them as they continue to fight against 23% pay cuts imposed on them by a Labour Council – and then pack out the Durham miners hall to hear inspiring speeches from the TAs, calling for a united fight against education cuts and to kick out the rotten Labour councillors who voted for this shambles once and for all.
Council workers who repair and maintain Gravesham’s social housing are up in arms over the council’s plans to switch them to seven day working and scrap their productivity bonus. The plans will mean paycuts of between 2k and 10k a year, and if they don’t accept the changes, they’ll be sacked and re-engaged on the new contracts. UNITE say protests will continue if these plans aren’t withdrawn.
Teaching assistants in Derby have taken the very brave step of going on all out strike to try and get the Labour council to talk to them and come up with a sensible offer to end this dispute. Last Wednesday, leader of the council Ranjit Banwait walked out of a full council meeting rather than face angry parents and TAs – and the following day walked out early from an ACAS meeting with UNISON, to do prearranged media interviews condemning the negotiations! TAs are calling on teachers and heads to help them close the schools to sort out the mess Derby City Council have made as quickly as possible.
The Durham Lions were out in force again during half term, impatient at the lack of movement in negotiations over plans to cut their pay by 23%. Now they have called a solidarity march and rally for Saturday March 25 and are asking for your support – not only to step up their own fight, but to link up workers from all over the country who are facing attacks. They send their solidarity to you and ask you to stand in solidarity with them – together, we can all make a difference.