Sunday, May 18, 2014

Solidarity with Lambeth College workers

On Saturday more than 300 people marched from Clapham to Brixton in solidarity with workers at Lambeth College in dispute with their management as a result of a (literally) unjustified attempt to create a two-tier workforce by imposing (non-negotiable) new, and less favourable, conditions of service on new staff.

The demonstration was organised by lecturers’ union, UCU – but also supported by UNISON members (myself included) and many other trade unionists. UNISON members at the College have also voted for strike action in opposition to changes which would see new starters working a longer working week, and entitled to less sick pay (with only time-limited offers of protection for existing staff).

Since I’ll be involved in negotiations to try to settle this entirely avoidable dispute, caused purely and simply by actions of senior managers (with the lamentable support of some College Governors), I shall refrain from too much comment at this stage (and I particularly draw the reader’s attention to the disclaimer on this blog, which is a personal blog and not in any way the responsibility of UNISON).

I will make this observation though. If you ask an employer to justify proposed changes to terms and conditions and they answer by telling you that their proposals are both “modern” and “fit for purpose” then you know you are dealing with those beyond the reach of irony.

You can show solidarity on Facebook.

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