March 2016


Wolverhampton, Bilston & District Trades Union Council

delegate minutes Thursday 17th March 2016

held at: Unite the union, 6 Victoria Square, Wolverhampton WV1 1LD



  1. Present – Sis Taylor(UNITE-CYW), Whyte (UNISON)

    Bros. Kelleher, Deacon, Everall (UNISON Gen), Taylor, Purchase, Rahimi, Marris (UNITE), Childs (CWU), Martin (MU), Beuno (UNISON Sandwell), Pemberton & Slater (WFTA)

    Apologies – Bros. J Grant (UCU), Juss (GMB), Brackenridge (FBU/LP), S Grant (NUT), Pugh, Turner (UNISON Gen)

    Sis. Halfpenny (NUT), Ceresa & Weaver (UNISON Gen), Battell (NASUWT)

    All were welcomed and introduced.

  2. Minutes of February delegate meeting and matters arising

  3. Executive Committee report 10 March; correspondence of note:

  1. 2016 affiliation & payments from NUT, NASUWT, RMT, PCS West Mercia, Community Craft & Region 4 affiliates & UNISON General.

  2. UCU College, CYW-UNITE, UNITE WM6503, UNISON Sandwell, UNISON University and Musicians Union still to re-affiliate to us for 2016. UNITE-CYW and UCU college being chased up by MT & JG, reminders sent to other branches.

  3. 1,000 colour A4 Wolverhampton Workers Memorial Day flyers (£44 paid but maybe 3,000 were received) and 1,000 Workers Against EU leaflets from TUAEU (free), some distributed at meeting – more available

  4. sent: £50 donation W’ton Federation of Tenants for minibus funding for 13 March demo; £50 donation to All Hands disaster relief in memory of Norman Brackenridge; public liability insurance renewal £189.25 paid; re-affilations sent: Venezuela Solidarity £40; Peoples Assembly £20; Abortion Rights £40; Labour Research £47.25; £10 West Mids CND; STW Walsall request donation towards Trident demo coach c/o Walsall TUC – coach cancelled so donation not sent

  5. Bro John Thomas branch Sec of Community 17000 passed away (Sept)

  6. invite accepted to speak at May 19th meeting by Nick Matthews on the co-operative movement. Delegates agreed to request to speak on Co-op Save Our Bank campaign.

  7. WB&DTUC anniversary badge given to Derek Robinson.

  8. Agreed to request video message from Frances O’Grady for May Day

  9. 12,000 page views on our website in last month

4. Reports/discussion:

  1. UNISON – Bro.Kelleher reported that 240 jobs were lost with closures of older peoples homes by council as their response to government cuts. Redundancies currently being fought in his own Enablement Team in council.

  2. NUT – no delegates present but report texted to meeting by Sis.Halfpenny on Small Heath school NUT dispute Birmingham. Rep Simon O’Hara reinstated on original allegations but suspended again on new ones. Strikes had been suspended after 24 days of action had forced negotiations.

  3. NASUWT – strike today over refusal to pay national terms and conditions at St Peters Colliagete school.

  4. Bro.Purchase to send Socialist Education Association letter to teaching unions. All scholls to be forced to Academies by 2020- removes accountability. Local Authorities never “controlled schools”, schools did. Control will go to Trust of Academies with CEOs with £200k+ salaries. Axeing of parent governers announced today. National petition and lobbying continue.

  5. Bro. Beuno –councils had 75% government funding, this has now been slashed and the intention is to reduce to zero. He believed that business rate exemptions could could transfer from Wolverhampton to S.Staffs.

  6. Secretary’s report – written report circulated. Trade Union Bill – Lords defeated government on votes on electronic balloting, facility time, and the funds used by unions for political campaigning. Workers’ Memorial Day organised. However some work still to do on 1st May event. Letter (printed in written report) from TUC General Secretary thanking us for an anniversary badge (no.100) sent and praising us for our campaiging and our Love Unions campaign recently.

  7. Midlands TUC AGM written report circulated and spoken to by Bro.Kelleher. Sis Taylor ran a stall and sold £44 of badges/book/mug.

  8. Wolverhampton Palestine Solidarity Campaign – Chair West Midlands Pensions Fund Committee is now Cnllr Jasbir Jaspal – refusing to meet. Dismissal of “divesting” in place of “engagement” – need to try and clarify what they mean by that. Only Government guidance no change to law, Wolverhampton still have powers. G4S and Veolia have pulled out of Israel.

5. John Pemberton & Andrew Slater made passionate speeches from the Wolverhampton Federation of Tenants Associations Board on the Campaign Against the Housing & Planning Bill – right to buy social housing will use council house sales to fund government to compensate Housing Associations. Secure tenancies to be reduced to 3-5years then buy or be evicted. Downsizing due to the Bedroom Tax would lose secure tenancy. Bedroom Tax has cut benefits intended to be the minimum required to live on. Universal credit and online applications will cause more problems. Household incomes over £30k would pay 80% market rent. Campaign is lobbying to raise this. Council Housing has reduced from 33% to 8%. Labour increased council housing to 46,000 homes – now under 21,000. Capping private rental and more building is the answer. At the London march last weekend of over 2,000, the Wolverhampton Federation were the only ones from outside London. They thanked us for our donation. Rough sleeping in Wolverhampton is rising. Important campaign with little public awareness. Lobbying of House of Lords – they have poor and bigoted opinions of council tenants. Need to involve UCATT. Discussed possibility of a march in Wolverhampton.


6. Any other business Get Well Soon card was signed by delegates to Bro. S.Grant.

Ken Purchase: “I advise everyone to buy the Morning Star”.



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