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WAKE UP! WAKE UP! IT'S YER JOB SHARING...
Published in Brighton by
Justice? - Brighton's Direct Action collective
Issue 152, Friday 30th January 1998
"You have all been an inspiration to workers throughout the world, this
struggle has united workers on a level unknown before."
Two years, three months and twenty nine days after they were sacked for
refusing to cross a picket line, Liverpool dock workers voted on Monday to end
their marathon dispute with the Mersey Docks and Harbour Company. A short
statement issued on Monday reads:
"At a mass meeting the Liverpool Dockers decided to call an end to their
long running dispute on a recommendation from their shop stewards. The decision
to end the dispute was taken after hearing about a number of very important and
significant developments which made it more or less impossible to continue. We
ask the comrades to appreciate the difficulty that confronts us at this stage
and understand that all the relevant details of the final settlement will
follow in due course.
Thanks for all your magnificent and wonderful
Yours in Solidarity,
Jim Nolan, Merseyside Port Shop Stewards
As SchNEWS went to press shop stewards were still meeting and we will give more
details when they follow. We at SchNEWS say respect to the dockers and Women of
the Waterfront. The dispute was surely one of the most imaginative and creative
responses to Globalisation in trade union history. It not only crossed
international boundaries, but united different struggles. The dockers fight
might be over but the fight against low-pay, crap jobs and a world where people
don't get shafted for trying to get a decent standard of living continues...
For a potted history of the strike, see
136 or check out the LabourNet website:
"While Elton John makes a song and dance about a dead princess, Polygram
continues to profit from the misery of the workers at M & S."
Polygram is a multinational company operating in 40 countries. It is one of the
three biggest music companies in the world, controlling 20% of the worldwide
market. In 1996 it made £2.965 billion sales! Elton
John's `Candle in the Wind' - the best selling song of all time - is published
through PolyGram but packaged by M & S (Packaging) of Blackburn. M & S
pay their workers just £3.80 an hour with no holiday or sick pay and 12
hour shifts. People employed at M & S through a local agency on a `when
needed' basis are paid even worse - just £3 per hour.
However, when one of the workers, Nigel Cook, started to argue against low pay
and poor conditions and set up a union he was sacked.
So a campaign has been set up not just to re-instate Nigel, but also to
highlight the crap jobs and casualisation that the dockers were also fighting
against. There's gonna be a picket and protest of Polygrams Britannia Music
Awards (the Brit Awards) at Docklands Arena, London on Monday 9th February
letting people know that it's not all glitz and glamour behind the music
industry. Ring 0171 837 1688 for details of the picket. There will be transport
from Brighton - ring 01273 685913 to book a place.
Nigel Cook Campaign: PO Box 14, Accrington, Lancashire, BB5 1GG 01254 679605.
- Meanwhile pool old Elton John has been told by his accountants of a looming
cash-flow crisis. It seems his weekly spending bill of £280,050 is causing
some concern With five homes across the globe (with two florists making 240
flower arrangements a week for his homes) and a fleet of cars worth almost
£2 million, SchNEWS wonders just how the poor old musically-challenged
twat is manages.
- This week the government told the nation that it had spent £126,000 on
refurbishing 10 and 11 Downing St since the General Election. Now what was that
about us all having to tighten our belts because there's no money in the pot?
- Belgians are facing a second weekend without money as a strike of
security-van guards puts their country on the verge of becoming Europe's first
cashless society. The strike following the murder of three security in armed
robberies, is over low pay (they earn on average £700 a month) and has
left banks, shops and their customers short of cash, with virtually all
cashpoint machines closed days ago. With teachers and health workers also on
strike and near-daily demonstrations, the self-styled capital of Europe is in
danger of sinking into chaos...
- 350 Magnet Workers have been on strike now for 18 months
over pay and conditions (see
151). If you'd like to make a donation contact the Strike Committee c/o Ian
Crammond, 109 Jedburgh Drive, Darlington, DL3 9UP.
- Hillingdon Hospital Workers have been in dispute for as
long as the dockers (see
136). Sacked after refusing to take a 20 pay cut and worse conditions, they
have been abandoned by their union UNISON and are desperate for donations.
Donations to HSSC c/o 27 Townsend Way, Northwood, Middlesex, HA6 1TG
The Free Party clampdown continues - last Saturday in Stoke Newington it was
the turn of five sound systems to have their rigs confiscated. So next week
SchNEWS is gonna do a double-issue on what's been happening round the country
in the past six months. Give us a bell if you've got any gossip.
"Dead Womans Bottom has taken a slapping but we're still holding
Twelve days after bailiffs moved in and evicted protesters, there's still
plenty of activity up Dead Womans Bottom. People are trying to stop a link road
being built to make it easier for Tarmac to mine more of the Mendip Hills. (see
151) Although all the trees have been felled and two security compounds
have been set up, protesters are still `avin it'. despite 30 arrests, a 5 mile
exclusion zone and the destruction of the on route camps. "If we cant stop the
road, we can make it cost millions". Two camps exist at O.S. co-ordinates ST
716463 and ST 717461 between Nunney and Chantry Lane, with the road blocks
lifted and police presence minimal. Info line 01749 880 144/ Prisoner support
01373 452 777.
DIRECT ACTION SAVES ANCIENT WOODLAND
After another attempt to fell Pressmenan Woods ended in
failure two weeks ago, the `Management Committee' has thrown in the towel, and
announced that `an indefinite hold has been put on the feeling of the oaks'.
The campaign to save the ancient WoodLand has been covered extensively in
SchNEWS over the last two years; BMW wanted to destroy a significant proportion
of the remaining one per cent of ancient woodland in Lothian for use in their
cars, but a combination of direct and legal action has won through. According
to Marina, involved in the campaign since day one:
"We never gave up, even after two and a half years. Direct action has saved
the wood. When the police refused to `protect' the chainsaw crew from
`activists' we knew we could win it. Although it's not definite yet, it looks
like the wood is saved."
Cab drivers in Eastern Germany are facing prison sentences of up to two years
for ...well, for driving their cabs. 46-year-old Bernd Ludwig of Goerlitz in
Saxony was found guilty of aiding and abetting 3 refugees from the former
Yugoslavia and sentenced to 15 months in prison; even though when he picked up
the passengers he didn't know they were immigrants who had illegally crossed
the EU `border.'
In the Zittau region of Saxony, police are investigating another 22 cab
drivers and throughout the border region taxi drivers are being taken to
German border guards are handing out leaflets asking cab drivers to watch out
for `clients of foreign appearance', with `lots of luggage or wet clothes'.
Drivers are recommended to check their passengers' identity papers and -in case
of suspicion- alarm the police immediately via a special code word over their
Taxi Co-operatives from across Germany announced their resistance to this
practice and stated they were not going to exclude any people from their
- The Anarchist Teapot are holding a Direct Action Training Day at
the....Anarchist Teapot (next to McShit, London Rd, Brighton) on Saturday 7th
Feb. Give them a call if you wanna know more - 01273 570465, or turn up by
11.30 on the day.
- The WoodLand Action Society in Ireland, set up after the
destruction of Glen `o' the Downs, needs your dosh [any amount] with S.A.E, in
return you get their newsletter : Woodland Action Soc. 4 Blinkbonnie, Currie
- The Sexual Freedom Coalition are having a campaign meeting
at the Plough, Museum St, London WC1 ( 3 ins from Tottenham Court Rd tube) @
8pm sharp on Tues 10th Feb. Contact: PO Box 4ZB, London W1A 4ZB Fax 0171 493
- Brighton-based Natty Trust are holding a Natty Carnival @
Concorde on Wed 4th Feb, 9pm-2am. Amongst the attractions are face painting, a
full organic menu, live art, and music of course: Live Latino Percussion,
Carnival Collective etc. But best of all - a 5x5m piece of land will be secured
forever by your (£4/£3/£2.50-fancy-dress). For info on the Natty
Trust call 01273 564291.
- There's a free street party in Worthing Town Centre as part of Love
the Earth Day. Appropriately it's on Valentines Day (Feb 14th) 12 noon
meeting on the Green by Heene Terrace on the seafront.
- A Slough Borough Councillor chained herself to the railings on a Town Hall
balcony this week with a banner proclaiming `Save our
Greenbelt'. This was after the Council decided to build another 1,000
homes on greenbelt land.
- Bristol Green Party is holding its second Green Futures
conference on Saturday 28th February. Entitled'Food for Thought, Land for
Living' it's at Friends Meeting House, 126 Hampton Road, Redland, Bristol.
Tel: 0117 9246894.
- The next Groundswell meeting of claimant groups, is on 28
Feb - 1st March at the Secular Hall, 75 Humberstone Gate, Leicester, LE1 1WB
11.30 am start.
- Activists disrupted a Shell Recruitment Conference in
Portsmouth on Thursday, letting everyone know about the companies involvement
in Ognoni land, Nigeria. And if you missed that one, Shell are hosting a
meeting on Monday 9th February, 6.30pm, at the Shell Centre (next to Waterloo
BR). They will be highlighting the environmental benefit of destroying more
rainforest - this time in Peru - in an attempt to extract more fossil
Those loveable rouges who like to play hard at the Crawley and Horsham Hunt
have been busy just lately, at the Cowdry House meet Lord Cowdry served an
injunction on a Sab which basically said if you dont tell us the names of the
passengers in your van we'll nick yer, as an injunction is a civil matter this
Sab considered this a violation of his right to silence and refused to comply.
C and H also managed to upset their mates in the Sussex Constabulary when they
joined forces with the Chiddingfold Hunt.
Sabs and Shoreham protesters also joined forces and the resulting policing bill
sent the Old Bill potty. At a meeting between Plod and the Hunt Master it is
believed the Police said they were not prepared to spend any more of their
(sic) money on a `sports event' and would probably send the hunt a bill next
time, the hunt responded by threatening to sue (what for ?).
- All those who got 3 months at the Daventry fracas (see
150) have been released until their appeal hearings
Anti-fur campaigners protesting against a Mink Fur Farm in Ponteland
Northumberland responded to Injunctions served against them under the new
Anti-Stalking laws, by staging a no clothes protest on Thursday. With full
media coverage and the private security videoing furiously, (we're looking
forward to the sell thru), the police were reluctant to tackle the naked and
vegan Vaseline covered frolickers so not surprisingly no-one was arrested.
`Inverness' John Davies and Ian Williamson were found guilty this week of
violent disorder and criminal damage to a fence, during the Manchester No
Runway II airport campaign They were given given 12 months each and could do
with some letters of support. Write to them at HMP Altcourse, Higher Lane,
Fazakerly, Liverpool, L9 7LH. John's prison number is CH4539; Ian's CH5067.
Help! We're not joking - we really need some new people to help with SchNEWS.
So if you fancy having a go why not come along to our training day on 18th
February. Or pop in sooner if you just can't wait to get involved.
The Corrections Corporation of America has emerged as the McDonald's of private
prisons. CCA is now worth $3.5 billion, and is among the top 5 performers on
the New York Stock Exchange. Much of this success is due to the philosophy of
co-founder Thomas Beasley, who tells us just what this prison business is all
about "You just sell it like you were selling cars or real estate or
If some one who knows the score dosn't come in and look at our mac's in the
next few days there wont be any SchNEWS next
Happy birthday Phil you old git "keep on trucking".
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SchNEWS, PO Box 2600, Brighton, BN2 2DX, England
Phone/Fax (call before faxing): 01273 685913
Last updated 9 February 1998
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