Thursday, 8 December 2011

Trade Union Protest at Ashton Town Hall

ON TUESDAY NIGHT, delegates from Tameside Trade Union Council (TUC) and their supporters, including a few blacklisted local electricians, held a protest outside Ashton-under-Lyne Town Hall in Tameside. They were complaining at the failure of the Council Leader, Kieran Quinn, to answer questions from both the Tameside Reporter and the Secretary of Tameside TUC about his role in awarding contracts to Carillion, a global giant accused of being affiliated to firm trading information for money: including the names, national insurance numbers and activities of trade unionists in the British building industry. A local electrician from Denton, Steve Acheson, is one such person who has appeared on this unlawful data base and has been a leading figure in the campaign against this unsavory business described as blacklisting, for which a case is now being prepared by a firm of London solicitors for presentation in the civil courts.

Yesterday's protesters aired their concerns about about the recent transfer of a local authority department of Tameside Estates & Facilities to the private sector under the management of Carillion. This move was at the time of the transfer met with dismay from staff at Tameside Metropolitan Council, who are obviously unaware of the more murky history of Carillion in their recent labour relations, and also to critical comment in the columns of the Tameside Reporter.

Leaflets carrying the Email address of Tameside TUC were distributed at both entrances to the Council Chamber. There was some sympathetic reaction from some of the councillors, and some didn't even realise that Carillion had been linked to a company accused of blacklisting trade unionists. Councillor Quinn, is still presumably a member of the Communications Workers' Union, and who in the past has successfully sought the support of Tameside TUC to support strike pickets of postmen in Greater Manchester, has more recently been accused of arrogance and supercilious behaviour in his dealings with trade unionists and the Trade Union Council.

In reality, it seems that Councillor Quinn since he has donned the robes of high office in the Town Hall following a successful coup against Roy Oldham, now thinks that he can snub his fellow trade unionists shamelessly. He would do well to proceed with more prudence and caution because rumours reaching Northern Voices suggest that he is not so adept as Roy Oldham in covering himself.

No comments: