We buried BESNA once and we must do it again
Crown House have pulled out of the JIB and are trying to bring in BESNA Mk 2. Though for now they are still paying the same rate as JIB, they are hiding behind a smoke screen.
The fact that they are no longer in JIB means workers lose a number of benefits including:
Proper holiday pay: JIB pension: Agreed overtime rates: Travel & fares: Bupa.
Along with all this it will mean that there will be no rights of unfair dismissal claims under JIB disciplinary rules, so you need to have worked for them for more than 2 years to claim unfair dismissal, when under JIB rules you get that from day one.
To defend ourselves against them we must attack!
We are planning demos at all Crown House sites in the coming weeks, they have a lot of work in London as well as other areas so let’s get geared up to do what we do best, fight back!
We did the business last year and the time has come to do it again. If Crown House get away with this all the rats will be at it.
Get organised, walkout if you are on a Crown House site, spread the word, solidarity action across the country and bring every site to a standstill. No return to work until we are happy and no 'sell outs’.
Crown House [CH] are owned by Laing O’Rourke - both are big Blacklisters and no friends of construction workers. We must also fight blacklisting, many of our best activists find themselves being barred from sites because they are the best organisers against the bosses. One of our demands should be ‘employment of direct labour’. The Blacklisting wretches have cost us our livelihoods for years, enough is enough. Look out for a protest near you in the coming weeks.
Report of last week's National Rank and File Meeting:
More than 70 Rank and File activists from Scotland, Wales, Liverpool, Manchester, Nottingham, Leeds, Portsmouth and London attended last Saturday’s meeting in Conway Hall.
Item  on the agenda was to elect a National Rank and File committee for the coming year.
Item  was a financial report [details available on request].
Item  was a report of the combine meeting in Sheffield 23/24th July [Next meeting in September].
Item  Crown House/BESNA Mk 2. After much discussion on this it was agreed to start demonstrations on Crown House sites, initially in London St Pancras 17th August. This would be rolled out across the regions ASAP wherever Crown House had sites and possibly a leverage campaign to be started also with Unite. Agreed to approach Gail Cartmail Unite AGS. Unite have said they would be campaigning against Crown House and will provide leaflets, banners, placards, and officer support where possible. Notwithstanding Unite's campaign, it was agreed that the Rank and File should take the initiative as we did in the last BESNA dispute.
Item  ‘Blacklisting’. An update on the High Court claim by Guney Clarke Ryan was given followed by a discussion. It is still going on and many activists are being kept off large sites preventing any organisation. It was felt Unite should be doing much more to help our blacklisted activists, but it may well require walkouts by workers to defend our people and ensure they are given work. Gail Cartmail will be approached to try and arrange a meeting with the Rank and File committee ASAP to discuss blacklisting and other industry issues as we were not really moving forward quickly enough, especially on Rule 17 and pay talks. Blacklisting is a major sticking point for us all.
Item  ‘Play by the rules’ - a Unite campaign. Any issues contact local officers.
Item  ‘Siteworker’. We're planning a new one soon, if anyone wishes to write an article they should contact firstname.lastname@example.org. It was decided that we would try and increase the circulation more and distribute to as many sites as possible.
Speakers: Dr Biran Parkin gave a talk on "Power station capacity, Plant life-extension and the opportunities for contract workers"
Basically, shit loads of work coming up and it will all be on a tight schedule. ALL in out favour
Demonstrations: 24th August Scottish Rank and File are demonstrating at Balfours Head office Glasgow 11am over blacklisting please support.
A room collection was held at the end of the meeting to help cover hire and other costs, meeting closed at 4:30pm. It was agreed to have the next meeting in Scotland before Christmas.
Union hits out at blacklists and bullying
About 50 construction electricians and other activists demonstrated outside a building site near St Pancras station, targeting Crown House, who they accuse of making "back door" moves.
Earlier this year rank-and-file protests and pressure won a major trade union victory in a bitter seven-month row over the scrapping of long-standing national pay agreements.
Seven companies, including Crown House, wanted to jettison the long-standing Joint Industry Board (JIB) agreement in favour of a new Building Engineering Services National Agreement (Besna).
They say the firm is now trying to change electricians' contracts and pay rates unilaterally, despite industry-wide negotiations taking place aimed at securing a single, national agreement to replace the JIB.
Activists said they beat Besna and now they'll beat what they're calling Besna2. Protests are planned every Friday at Crown House sites.
Meanwhile, GMB is threatening legal action unless the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) informs 2,863 builders their names are still on a blacklist the office has had since 2009.
In a letter to the ICO the union also wants them to take action against the 44 companies that blacklisted the builders.
It follows a similar letter from Liberty a few weeks ago and both Liberty and GMB are criticising the ICO for refusing to act for the past three years.
In 2009, the ICO seized a database used by companies to vet new recruits and keep out of employment trade union and health and safety activists. Ends:
Finally, If you have any protests planned or want to advertise Branch meetings etc let us know it’s the site for all of us and a great source if information.
For more info please visit..... Electricians Against The World http ://www . jibelectrician . blogspot . com/
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