Labour Research April 2019

Union support for Windrush generation victims - The Windrush scandal continues to unfold as unions and the TUC demand measures to end the ongoing "hostile environment"; The challenges of academisation - As teaching unions gear up for their annual conferences this month, Labour Research asks how they have fared in the face of increasing academisation; Tories wield axe over youth services - Youth services are being decimated with serious implications for young people and youth service staff


Unite signs landmark agreement on ethical employment standards
 (383 words)

General union Unite has signed a groundbreaking agreement with Manchester City Council that requires all voluntary sector organisations operating ...
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Low tariffs risk thousands of jobs
 (269 words)

Low and zero tariffs would put thousands of jobs at risk in the event of a No Deal Brexit, warned the TUC along with the Community, GMB and Unite ...
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Dismay over Spring Statement (214 words)

Teaching unions expressed dismay after chancellor Philip Hammond failed to address the national school funding crisis in his Spring Statement last ...
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Interserve failure points to chaos of outsourcing and privatisation
 (282 words)

Unions last month warned that the outsourcing of public services to private companies is “descending into chaos” and accused the government of ...
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Union warns over ferry services
 (228 words)

Essential ferry services running from mainland Scotland to the Orkney isles are under threat due to decades of underinvestment, the RMT shipping ...
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PCS ballot
 (172 words)

The PCS civil service union is urging up to 120,000 civil servants to vote Yes in a ballot on strike action over pay. The ballot will run until 29 ...
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Cervical screening
 (96 words)

The UNISON public services union has welcomed the news that the NHS is bringing cervical screening back in-house.
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Unemployment continues to fall
 (227 words)

In the three-month period ending January 2019, the number of unemployed people fell by 35,000 — to 1.34 million from 1.37 million in the period ...
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Inflation steady (80 words)

Dearer food and travel costs offset by cheaper clothes meant that in February the annual rate of inflation on the measure favoured by union ...
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Key economic indicators

Key economic indicators (414 words)

Inflation +2.5%, Average earnings +3.7% ...
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Union news

Union calls for change in law following recognition victory
 (555 words)

The independent union representing Boots pharmacists has called for a change in the law on union recognition, despite its own resounding recognition ...
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Lecturers’ union to elect new leader
 (114 words)

An election procedure is underway for a new general secretary for the University and College Union (UCU) following the resignation of former leader ...
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Union organiser
 (104 words)

The BFAWU bakers’ and food workers’ union has joined forces with Sheffield Trades Union Council to hire an organiser to work across the low-paid, ...
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Unite web support
 (57 words)

General union Unite has enhanced the accessibility of its website to help workers who speak English as a second language and those with dyslexia and ...
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MU Mentoring scheme
 (40 words)

The Musicians’ Union (MU) is offering a mentoring scheme for its women members to support them in their careers. The union says the aim is to help ...
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Former leader dies
 (44 words)

Former general secretary of the Usdaw retail union Garfield Davies has died aged 83. 
Open access

European news

Minimum wage is not the way forward, say unions (412 words)

A proposal from one of Italy’s governing parties for a €9 (£7.75) an hour national minimum wage has not been welcomed by the country’s unions, ...
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Protection for whistleblowers
 (204 words)

The European Parliament and the Council, representing EU member states, have reached agreement on new rules to protect whistleblowers.
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Women’s Day protest
 (88 words)

As was the case last year, Spain was again the European centre of women’s protests on International Women’s Day on 8 March. 
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Falling membership 
 (111 words)

Union density in Finland has fallen by five percentage points over four years, according to figures produced last month by the Finnish ministry of ...
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Teachers’ strike
 (57 words)

A major teachers’ strike seems increasingly likely in Poland with 8 April set as the start date. ZNP, the main teachers’ union, is calling for a ...
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Windrush: the scandal continues
 (2,359 words)

The scandal over the treatment of the Windrush generation will be the focus of major debate at the annual TUC Black Workers’ Conference this month. ...
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Lessons in fragmentation
 (2,522 words)

As teaching unions prepare for their annual conferences this month, Labour Research looks at the challenges academisation has posed for them.
Open access

Youth services hammered
 (2,421 words)

Years of austerity have led to local authorities slashing their expenditure on youth services, impacting on young people from poorer backgrounds and ...
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Law Matters

Sacked for mental health issues following assault
 (300 words)

London Underground Limited (LUL) has been ordered to reinstate an employee who it dismissed after he disclosed mental health issues following an ...
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Treatment ‘unfavourable’ but not necessarily biased (330 words)

Sending an employee an email to her work email address while she was on maternity leave was “unfavourable treatment” but not necessarily ...
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Discrimination on grounds of religion not a factor in dismissal (246 words)

The dismissal of a teacher at an ultra-orthodox Jewish nursery who refused to lie about living with her boyfriend was not discrimination on the ...
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Law Queries

Emergency time off
 (448 words)

Q. I had to take four days off work last week because my daughter was ill and I have no one else to look after her. My manager says I can only take ...
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Covert recordings
 (161 words)

Q. My manager has been making racist comments about me for months, but only does it when there are no witnesses. So I secretly recorded a meeting ...
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Sickness during holiday
 (206 words)

Q. I just had a week off work but was ill for part of it. Can I reclaim those days as sick leave? ...
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Law Back-up

Collective bargaining arrangements must apply 
 (953 words)

Back-up this month looks at the issue of inducements by employers, designed to have the effect of ceasing collective bargaining. 
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Health & Safety Matters

Sell-off fears prompt concerns over safety
 (311 words)

Rail union TSSA has raised serious safety concerns about proposals it says could result in a “Welsh Railtrack”. 
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Musculoskeletal injuries need better management (202 words)

Public services union UNISON used Repetitive Strain Injury Awareness Day in February to launch a new campaign calling for better management of ...
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Security staff
 (134 words)

Last month, security staff at Southampton General Hospital voted to take eight days of strike action in a dispute involving violence at work and ...
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Managers’ support
 (124 words)

Professionals’ union Prospect has highlighted a new review of research showing that supportive managers are key to recovery from ill health. 
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Health & Safety Back-up

Ridding workplaces of dangerous substances
 (899 words)

To mark International Workers’ Memorial Day (IWMD) this month, trade unionists will be calling on employers to get dangerous substances out of the ...
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Equality news

Disabled workers face ‘unwelcoming landscape’
 (398 words)

The labour market remains “a tough and unwelcoming employment landscape” for disabled people, said Neil Heslop, chief executive officer at the ...
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Women hit hardest by local government cuts
 (259 words)

Women have been hit hardest by local government cuts as slashed spending on a range of critical services reaches crisis point, states a new report by ...
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Union slams gender pay inequality (244 words)

New research by the PCS civil service union reveals that civil service pay depends on the gender balance within departments or grades, and that ...
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Workplace Back-up

UK skills base falling behind other countries
 (914 words)

New research published last month confirms the continuing decline of the UK’s adult skills training system and highlights the serious funding ...
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e-views (384 words)

The TUC has recently launched a new online campaigning resource for unions called Megaphone. It replaces a previous offering, called Going to ...
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News from LRD

LRD AGM Keynote speaker - Kendal Bromley-Bewes (196 words)

The TUC has designated 2019 as the Year of Young Workers, designed to help young workers understand unions and “win at work”. 
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