The Socialist

The Socialist 1 November 2007

NHS: Kick big business out!

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London and South East regional conference

Over 70 trade unionists and activists gathered in London on 21 October to further build upon the recent successful national launch of the National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN).

Annoesjka Valent, steering committee NSSN

Dave Chapple, national chair of the NSSN opened the conference after which delegates discussed the recent postal strikes and what could be the best way forward for the dispute.

As well as stressing the need to rebuild workplace confidence and militancy and to fight for disputes to be run democratically by union members, many delegates also felt that we cannot ignore the relationship with the Labour government. The trade unions have an important role in building a working-class alternative to the main parties.

Paul Jackson, RMT branch secretary of London Underground Engineering Branch spoke about the recent Metronet victory. RMT members had gone on strike and won protection for their pensions after the company went bust.

And Rob Kelsall, GMB full-time officer and candidate for GMB deputy general secretary in the forthcoming elections, further stressed the need for building a strong shop stewards' network in order to fight the bosses' attacks.

Brian Caton, general secretary of the Prison Officers Association closed the meeting and explained how their union had been able to defy the government's attacks by effectively organising shop stewards in the prisons.

An NSSN regional committee was elected. Everyone went away inspired to go out and spread the word about the shop stewards' network so we can further build an effective rank and file movement and start to give the bosses a real fright again!

In this issue

NHS: Kick big business out!

Targets take their toll on cleaners

Feature: NHS - Time to fight for a national strike

Editorial: NHS campaigning - national strategy needed

Environment and socialism

System change to stop climate change

Workplace news and analysis

CWU executive member calls for a 'no' vote

Unison local government ballot result ignored

Socialism 2007

Socialism 2007

Socialism 2007 web pages

Socialist Party news and analysis

Countering the race to the bottom

Respect in crisis - what lessons for socialists?


The socialist interview

International socialist news and analysis

Nigeria: Day of action protest march in Osogbo

Switzerland: Racism dominates election campaign

Poland: Right-wing populist government defeated

National Shop Stewards Network

Wales shop stewards' network conference

London and South East regional conference

Workplace news and analysis

Bolton care workers' dispute: Workers' determination yields first signs of success

Vote Martin Powell-Davies for NUT vice president

Journalists: Fight low pay and long hours


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1 November 2007