November 2008

Wolverhampton, Bilston & District Trades Union Council Secretary’s Report November 2008 22 affiliated branches 18,600 trade unionists

We distributed 9,500 anti-fascist postcards. The fascist BNP have stood 4 times now in Wednesfied North and twice in Wednesfield S. without success. Their vote has been successively driven back to barely over 300. Thanks to all volunteers.
We will organise a mass leafleting operation to ensure the fascists are stopped by urging voters to come out and vote for other parties if they dare stand in Heath Town in the forthcoming by-election.
HELP NEEDED: Walsall by-election anti fascist leafleting 07941 834125 NOW!

The Hope Not Hate dayschool due on 22nd Nov is now on the 29th in Manchester but focussing on NW euro elections so I do not think it so appropriate for us.

Employment Bill – the United Campaign to Repeal Anti-TU Laws, supported by the TUC, promoted three trade union freedom bill amendments, clauses 1, 2 and 3. WB&DTUC helped with their postcard campaign.
Despite constant pressing from MPs, the Minister for Employment Relations, Pat McFadden MP [W’ton SE], refused to offer even a consultation to address the weaknesses in the law.
A vote was forced on clause 2, relating to proposed new duties on “employers in relation to industrial action ballots”. Gordon Brown suffered his biggest Commons rebellion as 45 Labour MPs voted in favour of the amendment, [none of the W’ton MPs].
The United Campaign had assisted in, drafting, and supporting a new clause 6, also promoted by Searchlight. The clause would have given unions the automatic right to expel fascists from their membership. Pat McFadden refused to give any ground on this amendment although this clause was not put to the vote.

Reclaim the Night
Women-only 2mile walk around West Park highlighting campaign against rape and male violence against women.
Saturday 22nd November 6pm

Once again we’ve organised a union party night (£3 ticket-only entry). It’s directly after the December 18th trades council meeting. Contact Secretary for tickets & posters for your branch.

UNISON has launched a campaign to defend victimised local trade unionist & WB&DTUC delegate Andy Goodall (UNISON Health), who has been suspended by New Cross as a result of defending overtime payments by organising nurses to resist introduction of plain-rate overtime. He’ll be at our delegate meeting to explain the campaign.

STOP PRESS: we have the pleasure of welcoming two Palestinian trade unionists to our next delegate meeting on 20th November.
They are being hosted by the Walsall-Palestine twinning group.

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