solidarity with cleaners in struggle: public meeting – 4th august

16 07 2009

A public meeting has been called by the Labour Representation Commitee on Tuesday 4th August to discuss solidarity with cleaners in struggle. This once agan raises the question of why senior figures in the Unite United Left have not so far been prepared to offer their solidarity to union members in struggle.  Download  pdf leaflet here.

Tuesday 4th August, 6:30pm
Somerstown Community Centre, 150 Ossulston Street, London, NW1 1EE, (5 minutes from Euston Station)

In recent years brave union organising efforts have been mounted by migrant workers to demand basic rights and a living wage. A number of cleaning companies have responded by sacking union members and activists; they have colluded with the Border Agency in immigration raids to break organised workers. This is an urgent issue for the whole labour movement – come and discuss what should be done.

Spanish translation follows.

En los anos recientes los trabajadores inmigrantes se an unido valientemente y con mucho esfuerzo se an organizado para exigir los derechos minimos y el salario de sobrevivencia. En respuesta muchas companias de limpieza and despedido miembros del los sindicatos y activistas ; ellos se an juntado con con la agencia de las fronteras para hacer redadas de inmigracion con el fin de romper la union de los trabajadores. Esto es un tema urgente para todas los trabajadores – vega y discuta que podemos hacer.

Martes 4 de agosto, 6:30 pm
Somerstown Centro Comunitario, 150 Ossulston Street, London, NW1 1EE, (5 minutos de la estación Euston)

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25 07 2009
Gerry Downing

It might be of interest to comrades to see how the United Left propose to deal with Alberto’s intervention in the meeting of 18 July:

Report from National Coordinators Committee
Saturday, 18th July 2009
Seán McGovern

Bronwen Handyside and Seán McGovern from the L&E Region of the UL were among the 15 NCCs present at ULU on Saturday – Russell Cartwright had sent his apologies.

Seán McGovern asked the meeting if it would consider the following confidentiality clause that had been put together by the London and Eastern United Left Officers’ Committee:

“Confidentiality: the business of L&E UnitedLeft meetings must remain the business of UnitedLeft supporters. The business of L&E UnitedLeft meetings should not be reported in print or online to non-UnitedLeft supporters. To avoid victimisation, the names of L&E UnitedLeft supporters showing their participation in UnitedLeft meeting(s) must not be published to not-UnitedLeft supporters online or in print.”

The meeting agreed this was good practice. We will present this to the next L&E UL Supporters Meeting on 2nd September.

Hustings
After much debate and a number of dates being thrown around, discounted and disagreed upon; one of the Coordinators reminded the meeting that September 5th was the date agreed upon by the supporters meeting on 27th June, and therefore we should respect the view of the larger body.

So, it is agreed; the Hustings to nominate the United Left’s candidate for the General Secretary election in 2010 will take place in Manchester on Saturday 5th September.

Eligibility to Attend United Left Meetings (National and Regional)
At this point we put forward a list of ‘Membership of London & Eastern United Left’ put together by our Officers’ Committee, as follows:
1. All those who were members of Amicus Unity Gazette London and Eastern region and TGWU Region 1 Broad Left at the time of the merger of the two lefts are members of the L&E UnitedLeft.

2. Those who have been proposed by existing UnitedLeft members, and have attended meetings subsequent to the merger of the two lefts, are members of the L&E UnitedLeft.

3. All new members of L&E UnitedLeft must be proposed by an existing member of UnitedLeft and accepted at a members’ meeting of L&E UnitedLeft.

4. Following a new member’s proposal and acceptance at a L&E UnitedLeft members’ meeting, they will be put on the L&E UnitedLeft contact list, and can attend the following L&E UnitedLeft members’ meeting.
5.
These proposals were fiercely challenged by 3 or 4 of the Coordinators. We did point out that these were proposals; and, the NCC could accept or refuse to endorse them. It transpired that the North West Region already has a set of ‘rules’ in place for new supporters attending their meetings.

The Coordinator from Scotland suggested a compromise position. That is, instead of a prospective supporter being proposed and endorsed and then allowed to attend the next meeting; that the ‘newcomer’ attends the meeting with the United Left supporter and the meeting makes it mind up on the night.

Bronwen and I felt this to be ok; and, we’ll be putting it to the next Officers’ Committee; after which these proposals and the ‘Confidentiality’ clause will be put to September’s supporters’ meeting.

How the Candidates for the Hustings ‘Throw Their Hats into the Ring’
Paul Birkett announced that he would post an invitation onto the United Left website asking for United Left candidates to contact him if they were interested in taking part in the Hustings to determine the United Left candidate for the position of General Secretary of Unite the Union.

Voting Mechanism
There is a fear that the London and Eastern and North West Regions, the two largest United Left areas, supporters could have a disproportionate influence over any election; and, after much discussion a first past the post election with a weighted vote was deemed to be the fairest way to go forward.

Each Region’s vote will be counted and entered onto a spread sheet; any Region that exceeds its Maximum Percentage of votes will be capped.

Agenda for the Hustings
It was suggested, and agreed, that each candidate would be given 15-minutes to present their case; this to be followed by a one-hour question and answer session. Depending on the number of candidates the 15-minute rule may be subject to change.

After the Q&A session candidates will be asked to leave while the ballot takes place.




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