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October 2017 EC Summary

30 October 2017

Summary of the key issues and decisions made at the meeting of TSSA's Executive Committee held on 26 and 27 October 2017.

There were two apologies for absence - Marios Alexandrou (London Transport) and Gary Kilroy (North West) who were both on leave.

Strategy

The wording of TSSA’s Strategic Vision was agreed by the Executive Committee. The Strategic Vision will be published by the new year, with recruitment of new members a key part of this strategy.

Financial

Walkden House was vacated on 25th September. We are in continued negotiations with HS2 over the compulsory purchase and compensation. Work continues on seeking a new head office building.Members are reminded to continue to send any postal items to TSSA’s original address, as these items will be redirected to our new temporary home.

Political and Campaigns

The newly inaugurated Campaigns Committee held a virtual meeting on 9th October. A number of key objectives were determined, including growing our presence at Tolpuddle Martyrs’ Festival, Durham Miners’ Gala and other key trade unionist events, campaigning on issues including nationalisation of the railways, electrification and against anti-union legislation. The Committee will meet again in December.

The Executive Committee agreed that the General Secretary would sign in the name of TSSA an open letter from ‘One Day Without Us’, calling for a day of action to take place on 17th February 2018 to celebrate the presence of migrants in our country, past and present.

Migrants have been demonised in the right wing press and elsewhere, particularly since the General Election in 2010, and racist attacks on migrants have been on the increase, most notably after the referendum on leaving the European Union last year. February 17th 2018 will mark a day of action celebrating immigration and the benefits that they have brought to this country, not only in the past but in the present and future.

Neil Findlay, MSP for Lothian, has published a new book called ‘Socialism and Hope - A Journey Through Turbulent Times’. The book details the six years that Mr Findlay has been an MSP and the highs and lows of his personal and political lives. You can read more details on the book at: www.luath.co.uk/socialism-and-hope.html.

The Committee agreed to donate £100 to send a delegate to the Time to Shine event which will take place on 27th to 29th November in Leicestershire. Time to Shine is intended to reach out and engage with a new generation of trade unionists. Future TSSA will be contacted to ask them to elect a delegate to this event.

Industrial Relations

TSSA reps on Virgin Trains West Coast met on Monday 23rd October, and agreed to request a ballot of all TSSA members on VTWC for strike action over an unresolved pay dispute. The Executive Committee agreed to authorise a ballot of members and to authorise the General Secretary to call out members for strike action should it become necessary.

Irish Rail members have been balloted for strike action - 67% of this balloted voted in favour of strike action. Strikes have been called for late November and early December. The EC agreed to approve all actions taken to date and authorise the General Secretary to call strike action.

TSSA Democracy

The EC received correspondence from London Metropolitan and Underground No1 branches regarding the issue of the transfer of members branch, as well as the election of reps to various roles. The EC will send a suitable response in due course. Additionally, all LUL branches will be advised to carry out full mapping exercises of their members ahead of full elections in the new year.

Time to Grow and Organising

Membership numbers continue to slowly decline. Work has started on creating recruitment training courses for all reps, which are hoped to begin in the new year, and the Executive Committee discussed a number of ideas for supporting reps in the recruitment of new members, further discussions will take place at the next EC meeting.

Donations and Funding

Donations were authorised to the following:

  • A donation of £100 was made to South Yorkshire Women’s Aid, who deliver therapeutic educational courses on understanding and dealing domestic abuse, as well as providing a variety of free services for victims of domestic abuse.
  • A donation of £25 was given to FiLiA (formally Feminism in London) https://filia.org.uk/welcome
  • A donation of £50 was made to the Freedom for Öcalan Campaign, a campaign dedicated to securing the release of Abdulah Öcalan, a Kurdish nationalist leader incarcerated in a Turkish prison since 1999. You can find more details on the campaign at www.freeocalan.org.
  • A donation of £100 was made to the Banner Theatre Company to assist in their production of ‘Rise Like Lions!’, which is touring from October 27th. You can find more details on the Banner Theatre Company at www.bannertheatre.co.uk.
  • A donation of £500 was made to Union News, which was established in 2011 to report news from the UK’s trade union movement, providing an outlet for workers and their campaigns which is missing from the mainstream media. Take a look at Union News at www.union-news.co.uk.
  • A donation of £50 was made to National Disabled People’s Summit. The summit will be taking place on 4th November in Hamilton House, Mabledon Place, Mabledon Place, London WC1H 9BD. Further details can be found here https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/national-disabled-peoples-summit-tickets-38706991654.
  • A donation of £1000 was made to People’s Assembly Against Austerity. TSSA is an affiliate to People’s Assembly and you can see the People’s Assembly website at www.thepeoplesassembly.org.uk.
  • £250 was made available to sponsor a Latin American Conference on December 2nd At Congress House in London. A delegate would be sought to attend, further details can be found here www.cuba-solidarity.org.uk/events/166/latin-america-conference-2017. Speakers include Ken Loach, Ken Livingstone and Chris Williamson MP.
  • A donation of £100 was made to Labour Research, which celebrates its 100 year anniversary this year and is an invaluable resource for publications and research on employment and safety issues.
  • A donation of £100 was made to the ‘Time to Shine’ event (see above).
  • A request for funding from Disability Working Group was granted by the Executive Committee. £2000 was given.
  • A request for funding from Retired Members’ Group was granted by the Executive Committee. £600 was given.


The next meeting of the Executive Committee would be on 7th and 8th December
 

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