December 2014

Wolverhampton, Bilston & District Trades Union Council Minutes 18 December2014


Present: Sis. Taylor (CYWU-UNITE), Halfpenny (NUT), Dixon (UNISON)

Bros. Deacon & Kelleher (UNISON Gen), Childs & Macmillan (CWU), Cole (NUT), Rahimi, Marris & Purchase(UNITE), J Grant (UCU), Juss (GMB), Baron (MTUC) and Kholosha (visitor)

Apologies: Sis Kelsey (CWU) Bro Thomas (Community)

Delegates were welcomed and introductions made.



Minutes of last delegate meeting (November) agreed,

Matters Arising 3.2 Greig Campbell, Project co-ordinator of the Heritage Lottery Funded ‘In the Shadow of Elisabeth’ exploring the union fight to save Bilston Steelworks. Launch is due in January Greig Campbell to be contacted. Needs tobe noted and reported to branches and fellow trade unionists. Suggested a contact for Frank Reeves was needed.

3.11 Midland CND rethink Trident statement signed

























Executive Committee Report and Correspondence of note: (meeting inquorate)

1. 2015 affiliations to WB&DTUC from UNISON University, UCATT, Community 17000

2. TUC’s Action for Rail protests January 5th, will be dependent on quality of leaflet which seems inadequate. Some volunteers came forward NK to contact if going ahead.

4. Nominations needed for Midlands TUC Equality forums. Bro Deacon nomination for Pensioners’ Network agreed. Sis Dixon to be nominated for Women’s Committee if able to take up position


10. Agreed to invite speaker from Defence Support Group workers at MOD Donnington in Shropshire to AGM.

11. UNISON police staff strike called off as negotiations but send message of solidarity.

12. Agreed re-affiliation to Anti Academies Alliance

13. Miami 5 freed. Progress but struggle continues.

15. Trades Union Councils conference new date 13-15 June 2015 Crewe. Delegates to be elected at AGM.

18. Letter sent to Pat McFadden MP asking why he did not vote on Palestinian recognition.



a) UNISON -Council Cuts Settlements for councils announced today. Need report next month regarding the situation. Last Thursday public consultation. Bilston Town Hall. 2017 Council insolvent. Privatisation. Labour needs to stand-up to cuts! There is a cost to monitoring privatised services. There need to be a message that these are central government cuts. There has been a disappointing response from Labour Councils in the Midlands. Put on next agenda

b) Other delegate workplace reports -None

c) Secretary’s Report –Bro Deacon & Kelleher visited UNISON & GMB picket line at New Cross during NHS pay strike end November.

d) Midlands TUC Pensioners’ Network – Bro Deacon presented a report. It is a small group becoming more active and no longer talking about its constitution. The TUC National Pensioners Committee seems to have no purpose. Bro Marris raised the question as why there should be a TUC Pensioners’ Network at all as nothing to do with workers trade union rights. There followed a lively discussion. this issue could be a future debate.

e) Wolverhampton Palestine Solidarity Campaign – Film ‘The Colour of Olives’ Friends Meeting House, 16th January 2015 at 7.15. Letters to West Midlands Pensions Fund regarding investments. Progress being made through some councillors and Trade Union representatives. Need to keep the Issue alive. The pension scheme is administered in Wolverhampton on behalf of the 7 urban West Midlands authorities.

Speaker – Lee Baron – New Midlands TUC Secretary.

Decent jobs week 15 – 19 December has taken up some of Bro Baron’s time. Rights for workers with zero hours contracts. A lot of places to visit in the week. cards regarding Decent Jobs were circulated and signed.

There are 16 Trades Councils and the difficulty with the WMCATUC needs to be resolved if possible without constitutional change. If there is to be a rule change it will not happen until 2017. Bro Baron to work with Congress House. The TUC had a debate regarding Trades Councils.

The Membership of trades unions is holding but the average age is increasing. Some youngsters actually LIKE zero hours contracts!! if the hours become regular the worker should have a proper contract.

The TUC should be a positive movement for change – campaigning not a Think-tank. It is the longest voluntary working agency in the country.

Shrewsbury24 when were the TUC last involved?

An issue concerning members with terminal diseases who want to work as well as having treatment. there needs to be reasonable adjustments. But then can be sacked. Labour is supporting this. it is not a left/right issue but right or wrong.

Regionally the TUC is campaigning for fair pay 16th February to 1 March 2015. Talking and changing the language. Need to showcase the good things unions do. Employment law briefings with Thompsons.

Bro Baron 4th secretary in the last 5 years. Hopefully there will be some permanence now. The reach of Trade Unions greater than the number of members.

There was further discussion concerning zero hours contracts What is the trade union position? Are there suitable materials for younger workers?

Bro Baron was presented with ‘A History of Wolverhampton, Bilston and District Trades Council 1865 – 1990’


Sis Taylor was thanked for her delicious cake and season’s greetings were shared.



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