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Theresa Griffin, Labour MEP and GMB member
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Jason Hunter HOPE NOT HATE at 2018 GMB Womens
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Lorraine Winson at 2018 GMB Womens Conference ALEPPO
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Regional Manufacturing Activist Forum held at Bill Smith House
One of the objectives following on from the regional launch of the GMB manufacturing sections “Making It Campaign” back in May 2018, was to create a Manufacturing Activists forum within the region. This came to fruition on 22nd February 2019 when the Forum met for the first time. Over 30 Activists from across 17 different Employers gathered at Columbus Quay in what turned out to be a very productive and interactive day. The meeting was chaired by Neil Holden, the Region’s Senior Organiser for Manufacturing who set out the future strategy for the Forum going forward. This included the creation of Regional Activist positions to sit on the 9 National Activist Forums alongside Activists from the other regions across the GMB, encourage and improve communication between the Activists, so that they can learn from each other’s experiences and the commitment to hold a Regional Activist Forums every six months. Neil explained to the group that the forum would evolve over time and he hoped that eventually it would be the Activists leading and chairing their own forum. Neil explained that he wanted to see the manufacturing section at the forefront of activity within the Union and to do that activists needed to communicate across the different employers and workplaces, find common issues and become force in their own right Jude Brimble GMB National Secretary for Manufacturing addressed the Forum. Jude gave an outline of the National Activist Forums and the need to ensure that each region has a presence and it will be the forums that dictate future strategy of the Manufacturing section of the GMB. Jude also gave a brief report on the state of British manufacturing and how the mess this Tory Government have made on Brexit has caused uncertainty within many manufacturing employers. This has led to delays in or lack of investment, which in turn has caused job insecurity. Jude also outlined the importance of the GMB research and policy team and gave an example on how GMB has been leading the way with comprehensive research into rebuilding the UK’s defence shipbuilding industry, following the Government’s decision to put the Fleet Solid Support vessel order out to international tender instead of guaranteeing they were built in UK shipyards. Activist Bob Welham who sits on the GMB Central Executive Committee gave a passionate talk on Activism and Organisation within the workplace. Bob encouraged all those present to fully participate in every aspect of trade union life from within the workplace and beyond. Bob described how over the years he had built numerous networks through the trade union movement and the information he gained from these contacts helped him support his members in the workplace. Bob Gunn, National President of the GMB Manufacturing Section gave a report on the National Manufacturing Committee and spoke of the upcoming Section Conference for manufacturing which will take place in his home city of Belfast in November this year. Bob continued the thread of the day by encouraging activists to participate, get involved in the GMB and become the future of the Union. Neil Smith GMB Political Officer gave a brief talk on how we work with Politicians to push our agenda. Neil explained to the activists that should they need some political support for issues, then all they need to do is make contact and he is happy to try and assist wherever he can. Following on from the discussion about filling the National Activist Forum positions with activist from our region, Neil Holden asked the meeting if there were any volunteers. A number of activists put their names forward and it is hoped that the majority of positions will be filled in due course. Steve Boden, GMB Organiser then ran a 2 hour Interactive Training Seminar on High Performance Workplaces and the techniques on bargaining and organising around the issues that arise out of issues such as lean manufacturing. The activists fully engaged in this training session and it was agreed that further training seminars bespoke to manufacturing would be looked for future activists forums. Neil Holden closed the forum by saying thanks to the large number of activists that had attended and for the way they fully engaged in the session. It was agreed that Neil Holden would set a date for the next Activist forum and communicate to the activists in due course....
Pledge Your Support to Help the GMB trade union block the Sainsbury’s takeover of ASDA
Help the GMB trade union block the Sainsbury’s takeover of ASDA. This merger is not good for competition and will affect our members working for these supermarkets; it is a bad deal all round. The CMA provisional findings warned that the merger between Sainsbury’s/ASDA could result in substantial lessening of competition in: supermarkets in 629 local areas convenience stores in 65 local areas delivery supply points in 290 local areas The report offers two options Complete prohibition of the merger or Potential sell off of hundreds of stores, and operations, depots, IT and Home Office. But this carries significant risk of being an ineffective remedy. Additional Conditions Divestment of one or the other brands Divestment of Stores, Distribution, IT and Central Operations Clear preference for any divestiture to comprise of solely Sainsburys or ASDA assets. Identifying a suitable single purchaser, with strong management, a proven track record in UK groceries retailing, able to compete in all markets, with a credible business plan. Up front buyer before merger, able to operate effectively as an independent competitor.     GMB Response The CMA provisional findings of prohibition or the sell-off of hundreds of stores, home shopping, petrol stations, and depots is unviable and is fundamentally different from what ASDA & Sainsbury’s are proposing. Both ASDA & Sainsbury’s are on the record as saying they did not want to sell stores. On the basis of CMA provisional findings, GMB Union is opposed to the merger going ahead. The sell-off of hundreds of stores, and divestment of depots would be devastating for people’s lives, livelihoods and local communities. GMB will continue to support Asda in being the highly successful, standalone business it has been for generations. GMB Union is talking to ASDA, and will fight to save stores, depots and jobs. Our members deserve certainty and job security and we’re calling on ASDA to make clear they will not proceed with the merger on the basis of the CMA findings. Pledge Your Support - Click Here...
GMB CONTINGENT INDEMINITY INSURANCE FOR HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE MEMBERS
What is covered? A) Contingent Medical Malpractice Indemnity against all sums which the member shall become legally liable to pay as Damages in respect of any Claim for Bodily Injury arising from Malpractice, including associated costs and expenses: 1. incurred in the investigation, adjustment, appraisal, defence or settlement of an insured event, including expert, legal, appeal and defence costs. 2. any Coroner's inquest arising out of the death of a patient of the insured. 3. Good Samaritan Acts – advice given, treatment administered or a failure to administer treatment, at the scene of a medical emergency, accident or disaster. As part of a valid Claim for Bodily Injury arising from Medical Malpractice. There is an indemnity limit of £2,000,000 any one claim, £5,000,000 in the annual aggregate. Cover excludes Charitable or Voluntary Work. B) Contingent Public Liability Legal Liability for damages in respect of: 1. Accidental death, disease, illness, physical and mental injury of or to third party persons. 2. Accidental loss of , destruction of or damage to third party property and/or loss of use of third party property that has been lost , destroyed or damaged. 3. Accidental nuisance, trespass or interference with any easement, right of air, light, water or way; up to an indemnity limit of £2,000,000 any one claim, £5,000,000 in the annual aggregate. C) Compensation For Court Attendance In the event of an insured person attending court as a witness in connection with a claim under Section A & B above – Up to £250 per day. D) Property of Patients Held in Trust or In Custody or Control Indemnity is provided in respect of loss of or damage to any property of patients held in trust by or in the custody or control of the Insured subject to the following limits: a) £500 per patient b) £250,000 in the aggregate in any one period of insurance but excluding the first £100 of each and every claim. WHO IS COVERED? Any member of GMB as defined in our rule book engaged in the business description of the injured persons. Business Description Healthcare Members, defined as nursing, ambulance and auxiliary services, home care work and community care work, occupational therapy, social work , social care work in residential and nursing settings, social work and home care work by persons employed in the Local Authority, Special Needs Teachers, Health Authority Independent and Voluntary services, child care, physiotherapy, radiography, remedial gymnastic therapy. Orthotics, chiropody, dietary advice, pharmacy technicians, midwifery as employed by the NHS and work undertaken by persons in related grades employed in the NHS as defined in the Report on Nursing and Other Health Professions, in each case where provided by workers who are members of the GMB Union. In addition to this free insurance cover, in partnership with UNIONLINE and Blackfords LLP, GMB will cover disciplinary defence costs, subject to GMB rules. In the event of a member attending any proceedings before the Nursing and Midwifery Council, or any equivalent competent body, in connection with a claim against the member, the member's costs will be covered, at the union's discretion. WHO IS NOT COVERED? Anyone who is not a member of GMB. GMB members who are self employed (whole or part-time), or whose employer does not arrange cover, such as freelance first/surgical assistants, Doctors and Surgeons, Midwives not working for the National Health Service or working for a fee and any member who is working in the USA/Canada....
GMB UNION MOVE TO OPPOSE ASDA/SAINSBURY’S MERGER AFTER 'STAGGERING' CMA FINDINGS
Union warns that lives, livelihoods and communities are on the line, not just share prices. GMB Union, the trade union for ASDA workers, has come out in opposition to the proposed ASDA/Sainsbury’s merger as the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) released it’s ‘staggering’ provisional findings. A provisional report released this morning expressed extensive concerns about the impact of the merger on choice and quality for shoppers and higher prices at the checkout. The CMA warns that the merger plans could result in substantial lessening of competition between: - supermarkets in 629 local areas - convenience stores in 65 local areas - delivery supply points in 290 local areas The report offers two options - complete prohibition of the merger or the potential ‘divestment’ of hundreds of stores and depots. Everything from stores and distribution to Asda Head office, home shopping to petrol stations could be impacted. The CMA warns that store divestment would carry “a significant risk of being an effective remedy" to the competition concerns, casting doubt on the entire merger’s prospects. Tim Roache, GMB General Secretary said: “The CMA provisional findings are staggering. GMB Union will absolutely oppose any merger that would see hundreds of stores and scores of depots put at risk. "People are waking up today worried about what this means for them. If this merger were allowed to go ahead, we could see thousands of jobs at risk in everything from stores and distribution, to head office and home shopping. “What’s often lost in talk of share prices and ‘divestment packages’ is that this is also people’s lives, livelihoods and communities we’re talking about. The price shoppers and workers face paying for this merger is simply too high. “Our members - many of whom have worked at Asda for years, if not decades - will continue to support Asda in being the highly successful, standalone business it has been for generations, but it’s increasingly clear from the CMA announcement that isn't compatible with the Sainsbury’s merger plan, which must now be blocked.” “GMB will be behind every one of our members in making sure their voices are heard in opposing this merger as we move forward.”  ...
GMB Ambulance trade union Voice news update February 2019
AMBULANCE SERVICE WORKERS - RETIREMENT AGE CAMPAIGN HAVE YOUR SAY - COMPLETE THE GMB SURVEY TODAY! The retirement age for operational ambulance workers now stands at 68 years of age. This could prove to have a detrimental impact on the long-term health of many of our members. Studies have shown that shift workers are more at risk of developing ill-health conditions. Many GMB members working in the ambulance service believe this increased retirement age to be unreasonable considering the physical and mental demands of the job. A 68-year-old member of staff is potentially responding to patients who are younger and normally more able bodied than themselves. Would a more appropriate retirement age be 60 years of age in-line with other physically demanding roles in the Police, Fire and Armed Forces? As a GMB member working in the ambulance service we want to hear what your thoughts are on this issue. Please take a few moments to complete the on-line survey at: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/AmbulanceWorkersRetirementAge Alternatively, you can request a paper version of the survey from your local GMB Representative and return it to FREEPOST GMB or email to NHS@gmb.org.uk Our strength is in our numbers. If you or a work colleague is not a union member ask them to join the GMB today – www.gmb.org.uk/join Are you interested in being a GMB Representative in your workplace? Email your details to - NHS@gmb.org.uk   Paramedics hit with 'fine for saving lives' GMB, the largest union for the ambulance service, is appalled by a decision to hit hard up paramedics with a whopping 18% hike for their professional registration. The Health Care Professionals Council – the body which all paramedics have to be registered with before they can operate - has increased their fees from £90 to £106. If we were to be in annual pay talks this increase would be able to be factored into those talks. Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer: Paramedics, along with all NHS staff, have been hit by years of real terms pay cuts. Meanwhile the chief executive of HCPC was paid a salary of £194,000 in 2016/17 – a 2% increases on the year before. Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer, said: “To hit our hard-up, life-saving paramedics with this unwarranted pay increase is pretty appalling – it amounts to a fine for saving lives’ “Ambulance workers’ average real terms earnings have plummeted by more than 19% since 2010 – while the chief executive of the HCPC enjoyed a pay rise to more than £194,000 a year. “Unfortunately we are now locked into a three pay deal. If we were to be in annual pay talks this increase would be able to be factored into those talks. “At a time when we are facing a staffing crisis within the NHS and Ambulance Service - GMB calls on HCPC to think again about this increase.”   Ambulance Trusts fork out £11 Million on high earners The top earners at the 12 trusts across Britain pocketed a combined £11.3-£11.6 million in the financial year 2016/2017. The highest amount was paid to Secamb’s Director of Strategy and Business Development/Acting Chief Executive who was remunerated to the tune of up to £575,000. Seacamb paid the highest combined amount to its top earners - forking out around £1.45 million to between them. Eye-watering salaries for the bosses while ambulance staff suffer is not good enough Rehana Azam, GMB National Secretary The combined spend would pay more than 300 much-needed paramedics’ salaries for a year. Rehana Azam, GMB National Secretary, said: "Our ambulance trusts are running on empty. They’ve no money to hire and train the staff they need to save lives, they’re relying on increasingly old equipment and demand on their scarce resources is rocketing. “GMB's ambulance members are working round the clock saving lives – they don’t want to hear their trust's meagre budget is being splashed on top brass salaries. “£11 million pounds would pay more than 300 much-needed paramedics' salaries for a year. "Many of our members are locked into a three year deal that doesn’t even give them a real terms pay rise. “Eye-watering salaries for the bosses while ambulance staff suffer is not good enough. We need fairness in NHS pay now.” Footnote Our own Derek Cartwright was the second highest earner with a salary and all pension related benefits amounting to between £515- £520K in 2016/17 which was the year prior to his retirement to concentrate on his beekeeping business. This amount was made of his normal £150k salary plus £362.5-£365k in something called “all pension related benefits” which is described as the amount included here comprises all pension related benefits, including: the cash value of payments (whether in cash or otherwise) in lieu of retirement benefits and all benefits in year from participating in pension schemes It should be noted that he is not alone in receiving this type of payment as the Trust has forked out over £1.7 million in all pension related benefits to executives since 2013.   ‘Pay-cut proposals’ for ambulance and NHS staff withdrawn GMB Scotland has today (Friday 8 February] welcomed the withdrawal of planned reforms which would have resulted in cuts to terms and conditions of Scottish Ambulance Service and NHS staff. Proposals by the NHS Scottish Terms and Conditions Committee (STAC) to the utilisation and application of Time Off In Lieu (TOIL) would have seen the value of accrued TOIL not taken automatically after three months devalued from time and half to plain time. It would have resulted in pay cuts of over £200 for many frontline ambulance staff, who routinely accrue overruns in working time against the backdrop of increasing demands on the emergency service.   The determination of our members in the ambulance service to protect their terms and conditions was evident in their massive rejection of the reforms GMB Scotland Organiser Karen Leonard said: Earlier this week, GMB Scotland members in the ambulance services comprehensively rejected the reforms in a consultative ballot by 98.8 per cent, compelling STAC to withdraw the proposals following a meeting of trade union, NHS employers and Scottish Government representatives today.   GMB Scotland Organiser Karen Leonard said: “From the outset of negotiations over NHS pay last year, we warned about the prospect of cuts to terms and conditions of staff over the further reform elements contained in the deal. "The proposals tabled for the reform of TOIL would have been the equivalent of the Scottish Government giving staff a pay increase with one hand while taking away with the other; that’s not what hard-pressed ambulance and NHS staff signed-up for last year. "The determination of our members in the ambulance service to protect their terms and conditions was evident in their massive rejection of the reforms - something that shouldn’t have come as a surprise to anyone who understands the pressures they are under. "We are pleased that the employer-side and the Scottish Government recognised the fact this would be a bad deal for staff and that they have agreed to the immediate withdrawal of the proposals.”    ...
GMB trade union fight to overturn leisure centre outsourcing decision
GMB trade union has threatened industrial action over a decision to outsource staff at council run leisure centres. Workers at leisure centres operated by Armagh City, Banbridge and Craigavon Borough Council (ABC) were appalled this week when the council’s Leisure sub-committee voted in favour of allowing the outsourcing of the local authority’s leisure services. The outsourcing of leisure services by nearby Belfast City Council has led to higher prices, staff cuts and less access to facilities for the public. GMB will now make outsourcing a key battleground in upcoming local elections. Alan Perry, GMB Officer, said: “GMB, along with sister unions NIPSA and Unite, has sought to engage positively with ABC council as it replaces three existing leisure centres – in Craigavon, Lurgan and Portadown – with a single one in Craigavon. “Workers have raised a range of revenue-raising proposals including new activities and courses for the new facility. Last night’s decision in which members of the Ulster Unionist Party joined with the Democratic Unionist Party in voting against the unions’ preferred option which to keep leisure services in-house. “Leisure workers and the wider council workforce are indignant at the likely consequences of this idiotic decision – should it be ratified at the next full council meeting. “The experience in Belfast City Council (BCC), where leisure services have been outsourced to Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL), stands as a stark warning. “GLL has completely failed to deliver the operating efficiencies they promised at the time of outsourcing. “Instead they have rolled out price increases and widespread staffing cuts which have sharply curtailed access to pools for those not already able to swim. “At some leisure centres, understaffing and a haphazard approach to chlorination has led to centres being closed for weeks and thoroughly cleaned after Legionella was found. GMB is a campaigning union, and our members have campaigned up and down the country against the government’s sustained assault across public services. Public opinion is on our side. Indeed, GMB’s Pay Pinch campaign fuelled the public pressure that proved decisive in busting the public sector pay cap. “Under public pressure to bring services back in house, BCC now claim the clawback costs associated with ripping up the contract would lead to 10 per cent rates hike, hundreds of redundancies and the closure of several leisure centres. “Do ABC councillors want to walk their local authority into a similar trap? “GMB is committed to overturning last night’s decision and will ballot members for industrial action if necessary.”...