TUC Midland Regional Council 22/09/18
The Chair opened welcoming all to the Midland TUC meeting 2018
The Regional Secretary's Report was read out first
Kate Tudson - From the Birmingham Unison Branch
Kate expressed her anger regarding the home care workers dispute and how the Birmingham Council managers are treating the workers. She announced [at the TUC meeting] that the home care workers working hours will not be cut, but we now learn that they are trying to go head with the cuts. She knows this will leave the home care workers financially struggling and this is why she has supported them in going on strike.
The second guest speaker: Sue a home care worker
Sue spoke about how difficut it has been for her and other workes and that some are looking towards food banks to make ends meet. She reminded us that the majority of the workers are women, single parents and migrant workers. Sue was very emotional whilst giving her speech. She gave thanks for all the support that has been given so far but the fight still goes on.
The third guest speaker: Young worker in Hospitality
She spoke about being on her feet and not getting a proper break or no break at all. She expressed how people working in hospitality can come under a zero hour contract. She stressed that the hospitality workers are tired of not getting their tips or are not equally shared. Some employers are told the tips are put back into the buisness for training days. She highlighted many big chain resturants are owned by companies based in the USA. She networks with ones through social media where she has the backing and support of hospitality workers. She looks for further support from the TUC.
The fouth guest speaker: Carl Roper TUC National Organiser
Carl opened his speech in saying how all the trade unions are lacking behind. One of the problems that he seeing is that far too much training officers, where we need to train more shop stewards. Carl also said that the trade unions are burying their heads in the sand. From the trade unions membership Carl showed us on the scale chart how the private sector is getting more members than the pubile sector.
Carl is currently working on a Young workers project and he commented on the fact that young workers are not been recruited early on in their careers. To then become members of a trade union. Carl also went on to mention that we need to look more closely at how young people today communite with one another. For instance the usage of social media platorms. Especially if we want to recruit new young members. Carl Roper was a good strong and passionate speaker on this matter.
The fifth Guest speaker: Ravi Subramanian
Ravi began by saying how proud he is of the home care workers and how they should be proud of themselves. He will be continue to keep up the fight with them. We should do our utmost to support them. Ravi moved on to talk about Staffordshire University's ballots and how UNISON looked at how Andrew Lloyd from PCS national pay ballot, contacted members by telephone. Also having stalls at the university, to make sure that members have received their ballot paper. By doing this, help members to understand the reason for their vote and by doing this shows how effective this was to receiving the numbers needed.
Overall I found this meeting to be encouraging.
Report from Sharon Dixon
21 May 2016, Derby - WB&DTUC delegate's report
Midlands TUC Regional Council
Less than 40 delegates attended.
USDAW, the shopworkers' union thanked trade unions for helping their successful campaign to prevent longer opening hours on Sundays. A 31-vote government defeat in parliament was recorded. 2016 is the 125th anniversary of USDAW and there is an exhibition in Dudley Archives currently.
PCS speaker from the Welsh National Museums two and a half year dispute over threatened pay reductions for weekend rates. Average wages of £15,000 yet the director general had a £27,000 taxi bill last year. They were on the third week of indefinite strike and the Welsh government is now involved. Collection was taken and donations from unions encouraged.
Plans for the 2nd July Chainmakers' festival were announced although no leaflets were available.
Speaker on the EU the TUC European officer segway safe for under EU rules on under Tories or Labour. She blamed Tata for the steel industry and TTIP on the Tories, not Europe.
The new Derby Council Jobs and Fair Employment cabinet member, explained how Derby had adopted the Employment Charter, agreeing to pay the Living Wage and freezing zero hours contract on new recruitment jobs. It's use had saved the council money. See https://www.tuc.org.uk/about-tuc/regions/derby-city-council-emploment-charter There was a dispute however with Derby's school support staff over single status.
UNISON put forward a People's Assembly motion supporting the national demonstration in Birmingham at the Tory conference on the 2nd of October under the banner: Austerity has failed.
The Midlands TUC's Dying to Work campaign has been adopted as a national TUC campaign and Sandwell was the first local authority to sign up.
A BMA speaker from the Junior Doctors dispute failed to attend.
next meeting - Saturday 15 October 2016 at CWU, Birmingham