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December 2017 EC summary

13 December 2017

Summary of the key issues and decisions made at the meeting of TSSA's Executive Committee held on 7 and 8 December 2017.

There was one apology for absence - Stephen Lawrence (Scotland, work commitments)

The EC was addressed by Stephen Cotton, General Secretary of the International Transport Work-ers’ Federation (ITF). Stephen was appointed in 2013. He spoke about changes made within the ITF and gave updates on campaigns. He thanked TSSA for its assistance in recent disputes involv-ing the American Teamsters Unions. These workers were in dispute with their employer, National Express Group(NEG), and TSSA were able to put pressure on NEG in the UK to assist and remind NEG that an injury to one is an injury to all.

Industrial Relations

TSSA members on Virgin Trains West Coast voted by 86% in favour of strike action. The dispute is over disparity in wage rises given to train drivers when compared with other staff working at Virgin Trains West Coast. Six days of strike action have been called, starting on Friday 15th December.

TSSA has reached agreement on a pay deal in Virgin Trains East Coast, however not all unions have agreed to the full and final offer made by VTEC management, who are reluctant to impose the settlement agreed by TSSA and Unite the Union. The Executive Committee agreed to write a letter of support to the Company Council reps for their hard work.

Irish Rail members have taken part in two days of strike action in a dispute over pay. The dispute was referred to the Irish Labour Court, which made a recommended offer which TSSA has put to its members for approval by ballot.

In Cross Country, the Executive Committee gave the General Secretary authority to ballot TSSA members for strike action and action short of strike in a dispute over pay parity for managers who are not covered by collective bargaining arrangements.

Financial

The Executive Committee agreed to the association’s budget for 2018. The budget reflects project-ed income from members’ subscriptions and also takes into account the costs associated with seeking a new head office building.

Work continues on finding a new head office building.

Political and Campaigns

The Labour Party has begun a process of selections of candidates for a significant number of CLPs. The Executive Committee agreed to endorse a large number of prospective candidates which reflected our own aims and objectives, with further candidates being endorsed at the January EC meeting pending receipt of further information.

A report on the Welsh Labour Policy Forum was received courtesy of Cheryl O’Brien (EC) and Paul Jeffries (Wales No.1). The EC noted the report and thanked Cheryl and Paul for their efforts.

A report on the North West Regional Labour Party Conference was received courtesy of Steven Roberts (Crewe & Cheshire General) and Allan Seymour (Lancs & Cumbria Retired). The EC not-ed the report and thanked Steven and Allan for their excellent efforts.

It was agreed to support Lara McNeill who is standing for the young members seat on Labours NEC.

The Executive Committee agreed to donate £100 to a TUC appeal for support for the Zimbabwean Confederation of Trade Unions. In the aftermath of Robert Mugabe’s resignation as President of Zimbabwe, the importance of workers to address appalling terms and conditions and fix an ailing economy is of paramount importance. The Executive also agreed to write to ZCTU to inform them of our close relationship with the Zimbabwean Amalgamated Railway Workers’ Union.

The Executive Committee also agreed to write to the President of ZARWU to re-affirm its support for the next three years and to continue to build its partnership with ZARWU in light of the dramatic political changes recently in Zimbabwe. ZARWU President, Kamurai Moyo, visited London recently and met our President, Mick Carney, in our offices in Euston.

Cuba Solidarity Campaign again extended an invite for TSSA to send young members for the May Day celebrations in Havana. It was agreed that this would be promoted, and two delegates would be funded equally by TSSA and FutureTSSA.

The TUC has called a national demonstration on Saturday 12 May in London. The demonstration will form part of the TUC Great Jobs Agenda campaign, which sets out the key demands of the movement for how we win a new deal for working people. The TUC intends to run a well-organised, inclusive, family-friendly, non-sectarian and safe event. It will kick off with a march followed by a rally with speakers.

The EC agreed to promote the demonstration, and TUC have tasked us to bring along 500 march-ers - branches are encouraged to begin organising for this event. Ten members or friends and fami-ly per branch would be sufficient to hit this target.

TSSA Democracy

Further to TSSA Circular 205/17 (issued November 6th 2017) regarding TSSA Democracy, the Executive Committee encourages branches meeting in December and early January to discuss, resolve and respond with their views on proposals to increase branch delegations at Annual Con-ference or to consider moving to divisional delegations.

Time to Grow and Organising

Membership of TSSA rose in the last period by 97 members. This rise has been largely attributed to the hard of reps and Organisers in TfL, who have been organising and recruiting as part of a large TfL-led reorganisation known as Transformation. A recruitment week involving staff, EC members and reps will take place starting Monday 11th December.

EC members also presented their plans to engage and help recruit new members.

Following contact from the Scottish Divisional Council, it was agreed that Inverness North and Travel Trade Scotland had become inactive and should be closed, with members redistributed to East of Scotland General and West of Scotland branches.

Donations and Funding

Donations were authorised to the following:

£520 to Institute for Employment Rights
£100 for TUC appeal for ZCTU (see above)
£100 to Community H.E.A.R.T. (Health Education And Reconstruction Training), set up in 1995 to support the people of Southern Africa, particularly South Africa, in their struggle to overcome the awful legacy of apartheid
£50 to Stop the War appeal
£25 to Derby Rights and Representation Foundation, with letter circulated to Midlands Divisional Council and branches to encourage their support


The next meeting of the Executive Committee would be on 18th and 19th January 2018

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