Archive for the ‘Cutswatch’ Category

Save Clapham Fire Station

Posted: March 11, 2013 by rabidleftwinger in Cutswatch, Demonstrate, Rally & Occupy!

There’s a demonstration next Saturday against Boris Johnson’s plans to close Clapham Fire Station

Demonstrate – Save Clapham Fire Station
Saturday 16 March
Assemble 12 noon on Clapham Common (rear of Holy Trinity Church)
Called by Clapham Fire Brigades Union
Supported by Lambeth Save Our Services

Please come, and please bring all your friends and family and neighbours. If you want to join us on the demonstration, we’ll be by the big Lambeth Save Our Services banner. You can download leaflets here here. The facebook event is here

We need to get the word out about the demonstration this week. People in Clapham are horrified about the closure, they just need to know about the demonstration. There are two leafletting sessions this week:

  • Tuesday 11th March, tube leafletting. 5:30pm – 6:30pm at Clapham Common tube
  • Thursday 13th March, tube leafletting. 5:30pm – 6:30pm at Clapham Common tube
  • If you can help out with either please let us know. It’s fine if you can only do some of the shift

    If you’re inspired by the demonstration, why not come to the Brixton showing of Ken Loach’s new film The Spirit of ’45, showing at the Ritzy at 3pm on Sunday 17th March. You can book tickets here. Lambeth Save Our Services will have a presence at the event, so do please say hello.

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    We’re in the South London Press

    Posted: March 10, 2013 by rabidleftwinger in Cutswatch, Media attention

    This week’s South London Press published a letter from Lambeth SOS about our demonstration outside the Lambeth Council budget meeting
    SLP 1 letter

    We’re in the Lambeth Weekender

    Posted: March 9, 2013 by rabidleftwinger in Cutswatch, Media attention

    Our demonstration outside the Lambeth Council budget meeting got a mention in the latestissue of the Lambeth Weekender
    Weekender cuts protest

    599071_543001465730770_1280623140_n[below please find the speech from the delegate for Lambeth Living to the Mayor and Council on February 27th. I’m afraid the council wasn’t at all responsive, so you’ll be hearing more about this campaign…]

    Mr Mayor, Councillors, thank you for agreeing to listen to me.

    My name is Edward Owoyemi and I am the UNISON Convenor for Lambeth Living.

     

    The managers in Lambeth Living have put forward proposals to reduce by half the sick pay entitlements of their staff.

    We think that this proposal is irrelevant to the priorities of tenants and residents. The last tenants survey told us that their priorities are repairs and maintenance, being treated fairly and the quality of their homes.

    Nothing about attacking housing workers’ sick pay.

    Our members are opposed to reducing sick pay. It is an attack on workers when they are at their most vulnerable and could cause real hardship to real people. It is an attack on the entire workforce and, if it is not withdrawn, it is very likely indeed to lead to a dispute.

    Why are they making this proposal?

    I am afraid that we really don’t know.

    We asked management if they could give us detailed information about how many staff had been off sick and for how long. We asked for this information more than three weeks ago.

    We are still waiting.

    We asked management if they could tell us what sick pay had cost Lambeth Living over the recent past. We asked for this information more than three weeks ago.

    We are still waiting.

    We asked management if they could tell us what they had done to comply with the public sector equality duty in coming up with these proposals. We asked for this information more than three weeks ago.

    We are still waiting.

    Lambeth Living have no business case for this proposal.

    The have no equality impact assessment of this proposal.

    They have set out to provoke and annoy their entire workforce.

    And they don’t even seem to know why.

    This would not be happening to us if we worked directly for you, the Council.

    The trade unions have an agreement with the Council that you will not change the conditions of service of staff without trade union agreement.

    We are here to ask you please to use your influence with Lambeth Living to encourage them to adopt a sensible and progressive approach to employee relations and to withdraw the threat to our sick pay.

    [a great email update from Keep our NHS Public – to join their mailing list or find out more, please visit www.keepournhspublic.com]

    EMERGENCY PROTEST AGAINST BACK DOOR PRIVATISATION

    Tuesday 05 March 1.30pm 

    College Green opposite House of Lords

    Bring banners, placards, street theatre and more!

    Andy Slaughter MP and Steve Pound MP will join the protest.

    http://www.facebook.com/events/520754267967978/520968034613268/?notif_t=plan_mall_activity

    9
     

    On 5th March a Lord’s committee will discuss secondary legislation that will mean virtually all NHS commissioning will have to be done through competitive markets.

    On 13th February 2013 the Government published the regulations (SI 257) under Section 75 of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. This Statutory Instrument (SI) will be going to the Lords Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee on 5th March; this Committee will then report to the House and the regulations would become law on 01 April.

    Assurances were given by ministers during the passage of the Bill through Parliament that it did not mean the privatisation of the NHS, that local people would have the final say in who provided their NHS.

    The regulations just published break these promises by creating requirements for virtually all commissioning done by the National Commissioning Board (NCB) and Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) to be carried out through competitive markets, which will have the effect of forcing through privatisation regardless of the will of local people. They contain legal powers for Monitor to enforce the privatisation spontaneously or at the request of private companies that lost bids.

     
    Sign the petition here:
     
    More information including briefings and template letter here:

    There is an urgent need to raise the public profile about what this threat represents and organise action against it.

    • Please could you help by publicising the protest and circulating this email.
    • If you could help with press or publicity, placards or in other ways please let us know.
    • Ask your MP to raise the issue and join us at the protest.
    • See below for information about petitions and other action you can take.


     
    More information from www.keepournhspublic.com

    Demonstrate – Save Clapham Fire Station

    Posted: February 27, 2013 by rabidleftwinger in Cutswatch, Demonstrate, Rally & Occupy!

    _65834087_65834085

    Demonstrate – Save Clapham Fire Station
    Saturday 16 March
    Assemble 12 noon on Clapham Common (rear of Holy Trinity Church)
    Called by Clapham Fire Brigades Union
    Supported by Lambeth Save Our Services

    Let us know you’re coming on facebook

    Clapham Fire Station is one of twelve in London threatened with closure under the fifth London Safety Plan

    Clapham Fire Brigades Union is organising a demonstration for all concerned to show Boris Johnson how they feel

    We invite you to come and be heard. Bring yourselves, and anything that makes a noise. This is an event for all ages.

    You can download leaflets here and posters here. For more details visit the campaign website

    Exposing Labour’s Council Tax freeze lie

    Posted: February 26, 2013 by blackdaffodil in Cutswatch
    Tags: , , ,

    [A guest blog on the reality of the council tax freeze and its impacts from Andrew Child, a former Financial Times journalist and a spokesman for Lambeth Green Party.]

    Labour-run Lambeth Council has made much of freezing council tax “for everyone” since 2008 (http://whiteag1.miniserver.com/~lambeth/?p=979).   This despite the fact that it has simultaneously been slashing public services, hitting the poor and most vulnerable hardest. The authority claims that the freeze is all about helping such people and was a relentless theme in the recent Brixton Hill by-election. The Labour candidate’s mantra was “I’ll always put people first”…”by voting to FREEZE council tax for the next TWO years.”

    BUT Lambeth Council’s refusal to cover a 12 per cent funding shortfall in the new arrangements for paying council tax benefit. – despite its discretion to do so (and 25 per cent of council’s making up the difference) – exposes the lie. The cut in central government funding has been long flagged and the council effectively made it decision not to protect those it claims to was effectively made at Cabinet on July 9 last year.

    As the council helpfully explains on its website “the council is not currently minded to provide top-up funding from its own resources.” (http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/Services/CouncilDemocracy/Consultations/CouncilTaxSupportSchemeConsultationYourQuestionsAnswered.htm) . Is this the kind of help Cllr. Ed Davie – chair of the health and adult social care scrutiny committee – had in mind when he tried to justify a second-round of taxpayer-funded “don’t blame the council” political advertising in a recent article in The Guardian? (http://www.guardian.co.uk/local-government-network/2013/feb/07/lambeth-benefit-posters-lazy-socialism).

    To be clear: Labour councillors are freezing Council Tax for themselves while effectively hiking it for the poor and most vulnerable. Putting people first? Are you having a laugh?

    It is plain that the council thinks there are better ways of spending its money than protecting those most in need. Like, heating the Town Hall to over 27ºC for instance. (http://www.lambethgreennews.blogspot.co.uk/2013/02/why-lambeth-is-dirty-man-of-london.html).

    The Resolution Foundation in its report “No Clear Benefit” sets out the nationwide impact of the cut for Council Tax benefit funding. (http://www.resolutionfoundation.org/publications/no-clear-benefit/). Some 3.2m working households will be affected, with pensioners the only group exempted. The numbers are horrific: some will see an increase in what they pay of 336 per cent; in monetary terms the funding cut will see some pay up to £600 more a year in Council Tax.  The worst hit? Nationwide, according to Resolution, it is that now all too familiar acronym of BME (black minority ethnic).

    Approximately 1 in 3 households in this deprived borough are in receipt of the current benefit, according to Lambeth Council. And the council’s own impact assessment makes clear that worst hit will be women and ethnic minorities. (http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/moderngov/documents/s51857/04d%20Appendix%203%20-%20Equality%20Impact%20Assessment%20CTS.pdf).

    If there was one council that really did need to protect its residents from the cut to Council Tax Benefit, it was Lambeth. Instead, the council will meet on Wednesday to outline a programme of cuts which will make those seen so far look tame.

    Ted Knight, a former Labour leader of Lambeth Council in the 1980s has implored current Labour councils to form a coalition of resistance against the cuts. (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/dec/30/coalition-resistance-local-council-cuts). To do otherwise he says is “absolutely indefensible”. To say the current Labour leadership of Lambeth Council is thumbing its nose at the likes of Knight would be an understatement. This Labour council is complicit in these brutal, ideological cuts.

    We’re in Red Pepper

    Posted: February 25, 2013 by rabidleftwinger in Cutswatch, Media attention

    This month’s Red Pepper has a really good article on how the cooperative council is a front for cuts. All the more reason to come on the demonstration against the council’s cuts on Wednesday

    Red Pepper

    Remember the November story about the ways in which the council’s own equality impact assessment stated that cuts to housing division staff are falling disproportionately on black workers? The union has been working steadily to protect these jobs so far, but they are still on the block. It seems that by the council’s logic, if cuts must be made, why not the most vulunerable workers? Such probable race discrimination in redundancies is compounded by the realities of who is being hit the hardest by these cuts in the community: black women and children, the elderly, the disabled. The Lambeth Ethnic Minority Achievement Team was one of the first services to be completely cut. We believe we need to stand together against discrimination and against these cuts. Join us in fighting to preserve those services that remain, and the qualified and committed people who provide them…

    Wednesday, 27th Feb
    6-7 pm Brixton Town Hall

    
    
    http://www.localgov.co.uk/index.cfm?method=news.detail&id=107633

    06 November 2012

    Lambeth caught in race row over job cuts Trade union Unison has attacked senior officials at Lambeth LBC for suggesting job cuts to the authority’s housing division, which would disproportionately fall on black workers.

    An equality impact assessment into the restructure of the authority’s housing division reported around three quarters (73%) of BME workers are at risk of redundancy, compared with less than half (45%) of white staff.

    According to Unison officials, Lambeth’s redundancy proposals are in breach of the public sector equality duty and represent probable unlawful indirect race discrimination against black and minority ethnic (BME) staff.

    Unison housing convenor, Hassina Malik, said: ‘Reorganisation proposals which only reduce the total number of jobs by a handful unnecessarily threaten more than a hundred workers with redundancy and the Council’s own ‘equality impact assessment’ admits that the impact on black staff is ‘extremely statistically significant’.

    According to Ms Malik, managers from the housing division began consulting staff on job losses without making available the equality impact assessment. ‘It is not acceptable for Lambeth Council to press ahead with a restructure which they can see is discriminating against black workers,’ Ms Malik said. Concerns over the impact of the proposed job losses will be raised at a meeting between trade unions and Lambeth councillors on Thursday.

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