Wakefield & District T.U.C.

Sponsors of "Red Shed 50" celebrations

Campaign to save the NHS

With perfect timing, on 10th November, the day after the Trades Council`s open general meeting with a discussion on "Health privatisation and the cuts culture", the draft STP ("Sustainability and Transformation Plan")
for West Yorkshire & Harrogate was published.  You can read all about it here.  If you do read it, you will look in vain for any mention of the daily struggle of NHS staff to satisfy the increased demand for their services whilst funding is repeatedly cut, or of the endless reorganisations, or of the unnecessary dispute which the government provoked with the junior doctors.  Cut away the candyfloss of bland statements such as "We are committed to achieving the best possible health and care outcomes for you and your family . . ." and there is nothing there.  To make the budget cuts that are being demanded, closures will be inevitable ; the latest threat is to the walk-in centre on King Street, Wakefield.
We will be joining with the Labour Party this Saturday 26/11/16 in its national campaign day to support the NHS.  If you are in Wakefield city centre, look out for the stall, talk to us, find out more, sign petitions etc.

Established in 1891, Wakefield & District Trades Union Council celebrates its 125th Anniversary this year.  The main event to mark this was a special meeting on Tuesday 25th October, when the main speaker was Matt Wrack (general secretary, Fire Brigades Union).
Matt highlighted the importance of Trades Councils in local campaigns everywhere, for example against hospital closures.
Mark Serwotka (general secretary, PCS) was also due to speak at this event but unfortunately had to withdraw due to illness.

This was quickly followed by another special meeting with guest speaker Arthur Scargill (no introduction needed) on Thursday 10th November.  Arthur`s planned theme was "The case for Socialism",
but he also had some comments on the subject of the battle of Orgreave in view of the government`s recent disgraceful announcement that there will be no enquiry into this.
More on this subject

Who are we  & What do we do ?

The Trades Council brings local trade unionists together  to work and campaign around issues affecting people in their workplaces and communities.  The organisation consists of delegates from trade union branches in the Wakefield and Five Towns area.
This year Wakefield Trades Union Council aims to:
With the threats of racism and fascism, changes in the labour market and debates over the future of public services, the trade union voice in the community more important than ever. The capacity of trades union councils to provide a local response and to organise trade unionists into coalitions with other progressive forces is crucial. We do this by keeping local trade unionists up to date with developments within the wider trade union movement, and by taking up relevant local industrial and community issues.
Why not become a delegate from your union? We meet on the second Wednesday of each month, 7.30pm., at the Labour Club (the Red Shed), Vicarage Street, Wakefield.

 Recent issues and Campaigns

Support the Kinsley 3


Bad employers nationally have had the spotlight turned on them recently, such as Deliveroo and Sports Direct.  We have an awful example locally with the 3 cleaners at Kinsley Primary Academy, who have been on strike for 7 weeks over pay and conditions of employment after their work was outsourced to Barnsley based firm C&D.  The womens` cause has widespread support including their union UNISON (which C&D refuses to recognise or negotiate with), also from teachers` union NUT,  local MP Jon Trickett, Wakefield Momentum and the Trades Councils in Wakefield and Barnsley. 
There is a good report here in the Guardian. 
Follow the dispute here on Twitter.
A fundraising social is being organised for Sat. 3rd December at the Coronation WMC, Kinsley.  See Poster.

Demo 160416
Support the NHS and support the hospital doctors in their struggle against imposed new contracts.

Wakefield TUC were at the regional TUC demonstration in Leeds on Saturday 16th April.  The BBC reported that there were "hundreds" of demonstrators.  Actually there were thousands (has anybody seen an accurate figure ?) in spite of the rival attractions of another demo in Leeds (against the owners of Leeds United FC) and the national anti-austerity demo in London on the same day.
More information on www.tuc.org.uk/node/124426
Jnr. Doc. 

Wakefield TUC has received reports on the British Medical Association`s dispute from delegates and guest speakers and offers full support.
* The Doctors` fight is our fight
* We can afford the NHS
* We can`t afford  Marketisation & Privatisation , PFI , Tax-dodging billionaires

Read more . . .

Fast Food Action

On 9th to 14th April we were part of a worldwide campaign for a living wage and workers rights in an industry which is notorious for low pay and exploitation of its workforce. 
See https://fastfoodrights.wordpress.com/ for info on the global campaign
and https://fastfoodrights.files.wordpress.com/2016/03/wakefield-global-day-of-action-diary-of-events.pdf  for local events and action.
The week culminated at the Red Shed on Thur. 14th, when we set up a direct link to campaigners in New York, who have campaigned for, and achieved, $15 per hour.  It can be done if you get organised !

TUC regional secretary  Bill Adams (picturedTUC spoke to an open meeting of the Trades Council on 13th January 2016 about the government`s Trade Union Bill.
He said that, whilst this Bill is now at an advanced stage of its passage through Parliament, it is essential to keep up the opposition.  It is one of the most vicious pieces of anti-union legislation yet.
For businesses, the government constantly tries to remove anything that stands in the way of making a quick buck.  Yet for the unions, it is hell-bent on tying them up in just the same sort of "red tape" that is being removed from companies.  A great deal of this has been condemned as unneccessary by employers` organisations and the police.  It is also likely to be unworkable in practice and increase the likelihood of unofficial action during industrial disputes. 
More information - see the  TUC website.
The Lords second reading debate last Monday exposed how dangerous the governments Bill proposals are on workplace democracy and hard fought for civil liberties.  Read the full article at: https://www.tuc.org.uk/node/124342

The Trades Council was involved in planning for "With Banners Held High" 2016 ; a day-long event marking the end of an industry.  Exploring the history and legacy of the 1984-85 Miners`Strike, this is a follow-up to last year`s successful event.

This page last updated : 22nd November 2016

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