Bristol City Council Jobs and Service Cuts

Dear Friend,

Please find below a statement with regards to the huge job losses and cuts pushed by the Tory government.We would like to circulate this to people who will seriously consider putting their name to it and then circulate it much wider but by all means pass onto others who would consider supporting such a call.If you would like to add your name to this statement then please email
If you could give your name, political party (if any), campaign involvement and or Trade Union that would be most helpful.Without a serious show of opposition to these cuts there appears little hope to challenge what will be a reduction and absence of services to many thousands in the city.

Draft statement

 No to Tory cuts

 Defend jobs and services in Bristol

The announcement that 1,000 jobs will go within Bristol City Council as part of another round of huge cuts (£43 million by April 2017) will have a devastating impact on both those who will lose their jobs and to thousands of people who rely on services. It is hard to imagine how older adults, vulnerable children and those with disabilities will not be deeply affected. The scale of the cuts will also hit global services such as education and health, which every resident in Bristol uses. It will make improvements to the cities housing crisis much harder to resolve.

The Tories are continuing to make working people pay for an economic crisis they did not create. The previous Mayor George Ferguson paid a political price for cutting back services when he was rightly defeated by Labour. The victory of Marvin Rees and the election of so many Labour and Green councillors was a direct result of people wanting an alternative to austerity and division.

We believe that there needs to be a huge and visible opposition to these Tory cuts. Bristol has a recent history of large vibrant demonstrations against Austerity and racism. We need to mobilise across the city to show the government that these cuts are unacceptable. We need to clearly show where these attacks are coming from and that they do not represent the wishes of working people in Bristol.

We call on Bristol’s Mayor Marvin Rees and Bristol councillors to call a demonstration against these Tory cuts. We urge Marvin Rees to lead that demonstration. We believe that we can unite people from across the city in defence of jobs and services and a mass demonstration would be a start to a serious fight to force the government to stop driving more cuts into Bristol.

If you agree on the need for the above please add your name to this statement.draft-statement-huw-williamsfinal


Support the Junior Doctors Solidarity March

called by Bristol Peoples Assembly

Junior Doctors are taking Full Strike Action on 5th-7th and 10th-11th October (inclusive) 8am – 5pm (no emergency cover by J Doctors).

We’re marching again to show our full solidarity with their full walkout. We will assemble safely outside the Eye Hospital (near the BRI) outside of its core service hours.

*** ASSEMBLE 5PM for 5.30pm March through Bristol city centre. ***


The government have declared since the doctors voted against an attempt at a negotiated contract that they would not enter any further negotiations with Junior Doctors over the imposition of a #NotSafeNotFair, sexist, destructive contract, which is so dangerous to the NHS and patients, both in the way it works and the fact it is alienating a generation of Doctors during a healthcare recruitment crisis!

** It is the government which is forcing Junior Doctors to take this action in protection of the future of our NHS, and is to blame for its crisis today. **

The doctors’ struggle is a fight for the welfare of the NHS and our society, against Tory austerity, privatisaition and attacks on workers, that we simply have to win. Luckily it comes at a time when the Tories are at their most unpopular in many years (as previous weeks’ grammar school and other controversies have brought home) and the government is facing crises on many fronts. It is one we can win!

All out!

Bristol People’s Assembly (we have been in close contact with J Doctors about this action)


The Return of the Strike!

The next couple of weeks will see a wave of strike activity in Bristol. There are many ways we can give our solidarity.

eyehospitalThe Junior Doctors will be undertaking a further round of strike action, this time without emergency cover on Tuesday 26th and Wednesday 27th April.the two days of action will will see picket lines, lunchtime silent protests (on Tuesday from 12 noon) outside hospitals and again on Tuesday a march beginning at 5:30pm from the Eye Hospital. Jeremy Hunt is being pilloried for his role in the strike, even looking to back down on his instruction to ‘impose’ the new contract. The junior doctors can win, and we must continue to show our solidarity. The local solidarity group has produced the attached leaflet.Please distribute widely and support the city wide march on the 26th.


Book competitionpic by Lloyd Ellington

140710 features

Book competition pic by Lloyd Ellington 140710 features

Support your local libraries. Mayor George Ferguson recently closed the Eastville library in Muller Road. Now the council are attacking the pay and conditions of library staff. They are taking strike action with picketing from 9am on Thursday 27th at the Central, Fishponds, Bedminster, Henleaze and Redland libraries in response. The stoppage will be followed by a “solidarity picnic” with supporters on College Green from 12 noon.

No to Forced Academisation of Our Schools

Last Wednesday Bristol NUT demonstrated at the Centre against forced academisation of schools. They now plan to hold a rally with the 4 NUT branches in the Avon area in the Lantern Room of Colston Hall at 2pm on May 21st. Invites to doctors to speak have already met with replies in the affirmative. NUT Executive member Anne Lemon and organiser of the rally has also approached the BMA to jointly call the rally. The well known writer and campaigner Alan Gibbons is also speaking, alongside (hopefully) local library representatives of Unison. A creche will be available. As with the doctors, the government appears to be on the verge of backing down, with Secretary of State Nicky Morgan beginning to eat her words. Lets support the teachers and keep up the pressure.

Trade Union Convoy to Calais 

Stand Up To Racism, the Stop the War Coalition, the Peoples Assembly and many trade unions are supporting the Convoy to Calais to deliver solidarity to the refugee camp on June 18th. calaisconvoyThe local SUTR meeting , 630pm, Hamilton House on Monday 25th April, will be co-ordinating convoy solidarity from Bristol. Following the tragedy of a further 500 plus deaths of refugees off the coast of Libya last weekend it is vital that solidarity work is undertaken in workplaces by trade unions.


New Year Strikes!

Junior Doctors

Please see attached appeal from Junior Doctors who are due to take strike action against the Government’s attempts to impose a new unsafe contract. The strike is due to take place on Tuesday January 12th with pickets at all major hospitals.

The action will begin with an emergency care-only model, which would see junior doctors provide the same level of service that happens in their given speciality, hospital or GP practice on Christmas Day. It will then escalate to full walk-outs. The action as proposed is:

Emergency care only — 24 hrs from 8am Tuesday 12 January to 8am Wednesday 13 January

Emergency care only — 48 hrs from 8am Tuesday 26th January to 8am Thursday 28 January

Full withdrawal of labour — from 8am to 5pm Wednesday 10th February

Teachers Strike at John Cabot School

Teachers at John Cabot School in Kingswood are due to go on strike next week on Tuesday January 12th against heavy workloads. The 70 teachers at the school are members of the NAS/UWT and the NUT. The one day strike next uesday is due to be followed by further walkouts on the following two weeks unless the dispute is resolved. 

See Bristol Post report here.

Support the Junior Doctors!

juniordoctors​Bristol pre-Strike Rally in support of the junior doctors’ strike (begins December 1st) and a safer NHS! Called by Bristol Unite Health Branch. Sponsored by UNITE Bristol Area Finance & Legal Branch, North Somerset NUT, Unison Concorde Health branch, Bristol University UCU branch, Protect our NHS, Bristol Unite the Resistance, Bristol Against the Trade Union Bill. All welcome to come and hear junior doctors from Bristol’s hospitals present their case. As well as junior doctors the rally will also hear from Sandy Nicoll, recently reinstated as Unison representative at SOAS, University of London, and Dr. Jackie Turner (BMA and Unite medical practitioners).

Lecture Theatre 1.4, University of Bristol Medical School, 31-37 St Michaels Hill, BS2 8DZ
7pm Monday November 30th
“Thanks all for your support!
If you would like to come along and support us on the first day of industrial action (Tuesday 1st), we would love to see you at the picket lines and also at our Meet The Doctors events – these will be happening at Millennium Square fountains, Broadmead, Clifton Triangle, Turbo Island (Stokes Croft), North Street (and possibly Cabot and Cribbs Causeway if we get permission).”

Defend our Unions: Resist the Anti Trade Union Laws!

7pm, Youth Hostel Association (top floor), 14 Narrow Quay, BS1 4QA

The Tories know that if they are to force through five more years of austerity, they have to take out their biggest potential source of opposition—the trade union movement.

That’s why they want new and brutal anti-union laws. But we can fight and win. We’ve already seen hundreds of thousands on the streets against austerity since the election. The success of coordinated strikes on London Underground and the solidarity for local strikes show why the Tories fear that the anti-austerity mood could spill into the workplaces.

The trade union movement needs to go all out to oppose anti-union laws. We need a big turnout on the TUC protest at parliament on 2 November. But there also needs to be a debate now about our response if these new laws are passed.

Will our unions be prepared to break them before they are used to break our ability to resist?

There are questions we urgently need to answer:
How do we stop the assault on wages and conditions at work? What is the strategy to build the unions, rebuild organisation where it has been in retreat and grow into new sectors? Can we fight attempts to divide our side such as the scapegoating of migrant workers, claimants and disabled people? How do we win a new generation of young workers to the trade unions? And with Jeremy Corbyn dominating the Labour leadership contest, and the rise of anti-austerity parties in Europe, we need a debate about the political representation working class people need.

Speakers so far include:

Karin Smyth, Labour MP Bristol South

Anne Lemon NUT National Executive and UTR

Dr. Alexander Carpenter, Bristol Royal Infirmary (representative of junior doctors campaign, personal capacity)

Chair Salena Williams UNISON (personal capacity).

Meeting organised by Bristol Unite the Resistance and supported by North Somerset National Union of Teachers.

Facebook Event here.

Dispute Solidarity!

Angry strikers set to escalate dispute:
250 Bridgwater fruit-juice makers resolve to see out their David and Goliath struggle against foreign-owned company to bitter end
Fifty Unite the Union demonstrators, a familiar sight at the Express Park roundabout at the north end of the Bristol Rd in Bridgwater for months now, were still in determined mood yesterday.
This was their seventh 36-hour strike protest against plans by Refresco-Gerber to radically worsen pay and conditions at the factory, which produces household-name fruit juices.
At least three more stoppages have been planned for the next two weeks.
Unite the Union officer Roy Winter said:
“Our members contribute their working lives to this factory, which makes a handsome profit for Refresco-Gerber. 
Unfortunately, under new owners whose HQ is now in Rotterdam, those profits are not enough: the plan is to double or treble them at the expense of Unite members sick pay, shift allowances, pay protection. We are talking here of corporate greed, nothing more or less.
 Refresco-Gerber is making a bad mistake. There has been a recognised union organisation here for nearly fifty years: Unite the Union will not walk away from this dispute until the company agree an acceptable settlement.”
Two mass meetings will be held on the 16th & 17th March to inform Unite members involved in the dispute of the latest negotiations.
Future 36-hour strikes are set for Wednesday /Thursday the 18th/19thMarch, 0645am to 1900pm; Tuesday/Wednesday 24th/25thMarch, 0645am to 1900pm; Wednesday/Thursday 1st /2nd April, 0645am to 1900pm. Trades unionists are welcome at picket lines, key times are 7am/7pm.
For further information please contact Roy Winter on 07720 705087
national-gallery-strike (1)
Don’t forget the ‘Meet and Greet, Thursday March 26th 6pm to 7pm at the Shakespeare Pub (behind the Arnolfini, Bristol).
PCS union members at the National Gallery in London are striking against privatisation and the suspension and then sacking of their union representative Candy Udwin. On Thursday March 26th a striker will be touring union branches in Bristol to collect solidarity donations. There will also be a ‘meet and greet’ event for the striker(s) in the evening from 6pm to 7pm at the Shakespeare pub, 68 Prince Street (behind the Arnolfini). If you can help organise a solidarity visit, please reply to this notice. All welcome at the Meet and Greet!

Local Dispute News

DSG Warminster


Defence Support Group workers, who are employed maintaining Ministry of Defence equipment are striking back for decent pay. They have rejected a one percent pay offer and have held a solid six day strike. They are currently in the midst of a further ten day strike and have been organising big picket lines at DSG sites across the country including at Warminster.

Can you invite DSG workers into your union branch or campaign meeting? Can you get to the DSG picket lines? Please rush messages of support to follow the striker’s @DSGstrike

They need your solidarity, please circulate the DSGcollectionsheet111214.

Lambeth College Lecturers
Lambeth College lecturers visited Bristol before the summer to gather support for their dispute. They have now begun their second round of their campaign, and full details can be found here. Please support them.
Sharpak, Yate
Over 100 workers at the Bristol food packaging firm Sharpak in Yate are taking intermittent strike action over a ‘sign or be sacked’ ultimatum forcing them to work extra hours.
Solidarity visits to the Unite organised dispute are welcome
Marks & Spencer Swindon
From GMB: GMB Ballot On Strike Action At Marks & Spencer Swindon Distribution Depot Over Racist Abuse And Subsequent Sacking Of Two Abused Members. On Friday 12th December up to 100 angry members will protest outside the Marks and Spencer store in Swindon over this management action says GMB.

GMB members will be holding banners saying “Marks and Spencer, we will not tolerate racism, we are not slaves” and “We Demand Respect at Work”.

Carole Vallelly, GMB  Regional officer, said, “More than 80% of the staff, permanent and agency, on site are non-white, but of more than 40 Wincanton managers all but about 4 of them are white. Our members describe a management culture reminiscent of a Mississippi plantation.

The details of protest are as follows:

11:00 am to 12: 00 noon on Friday 12th December,
Marks and Spencer
81 Regent St,