July 2010

Wolverhampton, Bilston & District Trades Union Council
minutes of delegate meeting Thursday 15th July 2010

1) introductions to delegates & visitors, new & old present : Bro. Cole (NUT), Rahimi & Marris (UNITE), Bechler (ATL), Fraser, Kelleher & Deacon (UNISON Gen), Grant (UCU), Thomas (Community) Sis Taylor & Petford (UNITE), Kelsey(CWU), Ceresa & Sharkey (UNISON)
apologies: Bro. Juss(GMB), Hardacre (Aspect), Bostock & Clarke (POA), Marriot (UNISON), Grant (NUT), Childs(CWU), Sis Halfpenny(NUT), Burth (UNISON)

2. Minutes of June meeting – correction: CYWU rally report omitted from minutes;
matters arising:
i. Bnp’s annual Red white & Blue festival cancelled after our continued counter protest
ii. Morning Star industrial dispute settled without strike; 2year pay deal
iii. Shrewsbury 24 campaign – offer from WB&DTUC to fund a new website for them via Leftspace if they require
iv. UCU had good rally against cuts with support and speakers from WB&DTUC
3) Executive Committee Report (8-7-10) Sis Kelsey gave apologies;
correspondence actioned:

1. Cheryl Pidgeon re Midlands trades union councils conference – proposals discussed and suggestions made – item on delegate meeting agenda
2. Campaign for LP Democracy in support of Diane Abbott.
3. British Pensioners TU Assoc – request support for travel to Burston Strike School rally Sun 5 Sept. – agreed to donate £20
4. Standing apologies for executive meetings from Bro. Thomas due to commitment to East Park Management Group Bro. Cole apologies for September meetings
5. NUT – re Bro.Cole retirement Thurs 22 July Jennie Lee Centre 4-6pm
6. Tues 13 July 7pm B’ham council Chamber B1 1BB anti-Academies meeting
7. W.Mids UNISON £300 for May Day – receipt & DVD sent
8. Shrewsbury24 Campaign affiliation £25 plus £100 donation, details emailed to delegates for raising at their branches.
9. Haldane Socialist lawyers affiliation £20 sent
10. To be sent thanks for May Day donations and POA donation– send with DVD of event
11. TUC Development Grant £300 request for May Day work
future TUC speakers? Contact Derek Robinson again
Merchandise ordered 100 t-shirts “Trash the Fash”,8 red wolvestuc hats, 24 May 1st polo shirts £319.01 agreed to order 2 designs of mugs wolvestuc and workers memorial day approx £480 for 200 mugs. Question raised re ethical nature of t-shirt production, further info to be sought by secretary.
4) Reports: a) Secretary – written report circulated
delegates sent best wishes to Bro.Clarke for a speedy recovery from bad health
Hope not Hate, Bilston N 29th July by-election anti-bnp campaign underway using our own Bilston Matters – TU Alternative 5000 A4 doubled sided flyers, (HnH printers used, very good). UCU and CYWU which have bases in the ward have taken on areas to leaflet.
HnH re possible meeting for new volunteers – 15th & 18th July had been suggested to new national HnH organiser, no response so far
Dudley UAF counter-protest against EDL – 17th July delegates to attend in solidarity
Phoenix festival Sunday 18th July, Blakenhall HnH stall volunteers needed 10am-4pm freebies and union literature provided by delegates

b) discussion of planned regional Trades Union Councils meeting, further amendments made to comments by our Executive – to be sent out by email

c) Bro. Bechler (ATL) – gave a report on the establishment of Wolverhampton Public Services Union Alliance next meeting Sept. 3rd other public sector unions to be invited – lack of direct democratic relationship with WB&DTUC queried. All unions have public sector members

d) delegates' workplace reports – UNISON – bigs cuts and merging of services between councils announced last night; no info on jobs
NUT & ATL no local schools signed up for free schools/ new academies. Government is stating interest as any school checking website information. Freedom of Information request via Emma Reynolds suggested to see how many have actually registered.
UNITE – NHS white paper paves way for privatisation. Local Mental Health services will be taken over by Sandwell; Health improvement to council; IT, payroll and others privatise? Over next year; West Mids Strategic Health authority dismantled
e) Midlands TUC – Reclaim the night B’ham 23rd October roadshow at T&G office in afternoon followed by 1 hour social centenary square 6pm
f) Midlands TUC Pensioners’ Network written report circulated by Bro.Deacon, the April demo in London we attended did not get widespread support
g) local Palestine Solidarity boycott Israeli goods direct action being taken at local supermarkets
5) Resolution moved by Wolverhampton General Branch was passed

“Given the planned punitive cuts in public services by the Con Dem Government and their clear intention at the same time to attack trade union rights.
This Trades Union Council views with serious concern the TUC's intention to invite the Prime Minister to speak at this year's Trades Union Congress.
This Trades Union Council believes this is a mistake and at a time when trade unions particularly public sector unions are preparing to fight against Government attacks. The invitation sends the wrong message. [“ to our enemy” at end of sentence was deleted by amendment].
This Trades Union Council therefore agrees:
1. To call on the TUC to withdraw the invitation
2. Send this motion to the West Midlands CATUC with the intention that it is sent to the Midlands TUC.”

6) Film Premiere – Wolverhampton Workers’ Day 2010 a short film was shown – copies available from secretary.

7) Any Other Business – Bro.Kelleher took delegates to the ground floor of the civic centre to the plaque, marking the transportation of Wolverhampton Tin plate union (now UNITE 3120M) members in 1819, before the Tolpuddle Martyrs – he gave the background of the events which took place on the very site of our meetings, using information from Bro.Dodd, the current branch secretary of what is certainly one of the oldest trade union branches in continued existence. Hand-outs were produced giving all known details and that info is now on the website. Further research needs to be done by volunteer and it could form an addition to trades council history as a preface – info to be put on website. 200th anniversary in 2019.

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