More strikes called after failure of talks

Pickets at Fujitsu Manchester

Talks with Fujitsu produced no offer and no proposals from the company, which did not accept proposals put forward by Unite to settle the dispute over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions.

Unite has notified the company of further strike dates in pursuit of a settlement acceptable to members.

The strikes called are now:

  • Thursday 13th April
  • Thursday 20th – Friday 21st April
  • Monday 24th April
  • Thursday 27th – Friday 28th April
  • Thursday 4th – Friday 5th May
  • Monday 8th May
  • Thursday 11th – Friday 12th May

The continuous action is also ongoing until further notice:

  • Refusal to cooperate with or participate in projects to move work offshore, including knowledge transfer
  • Refusal to undertake time recording (e.g. SST) or forecasting (e.g. MyTime)
  • Work to rule and withdrawal of goodwill
  • Ban on overtime

For further information, including details of pickets and how supporters can donate money are here.

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Fujitsu action escalates as staff back Unite candidates in election

Action plans – further strike days

The industrial action is already biting, having a real impact on the company in a number of areas. Tomorrow some of our reps and Unite National Officer are meeting the company to see if the company is willing to make an offer to resolve the dispute which could then be put to members. We are campaigning:

  • To save jobs, avoid Compulsory Redundancies and improve redundancy pay
  • For all employees to have the right to union recognition, especially now our Voice has been removed
  • For compensation for employees whose pensions were retrospectively slashed; to tackle pay inequality; and for Fujitsu to become an accredited Living Wage employer

Given that the company has only allowed 90 minutes for tomorrow’s meeting, it seems unlikely that an offer will be forthcoming on the day, but hopefully some progress can be made.

Thanks to all the members who fed in their thoughts on future action to keep the pressure up. Key considerations were:

  • Fujitsu has started making members redundant, and more job losses are planned over the coming weeks, so we need to win quickly if we are to benefit as many members as possible, rather than allowing the dispute to drag on
  • We are now over 4 weeks into the 12 week period of maximum protection for members taking industrial action
  • We have to give the company at least two weeks’ notice of industrial action. Action can be suspended at short notice, but cannot be called at short notice.

Following consultation with members your elected Combine Committee asked Unite to call further industrial action, which has now been notified to the company as follows:

  • Thursday 13th April
  • Thursday 20th April
  • Friday 21st April
  • Monday 24th April

The continuous action is also ongoing until further notice:

  • Refusal to cooperate with or participate in projects to move work offshore, including knowledge transfer
  • Refusal to undertake time recording (e.g. SST) or forecasting (e.g. MyTime)
  • Work to rule and withdrawal of goodwill
  • Ban on overtime

Details of how to claim your dispute benefit were sent out again on Tuesday.

Union members elected to negotiate Fujitsu Voice replacement

Fujitsu terminated Fujitsu Voice and the associated redundancy agreement in January, stripping staff of vital rights before the redundancies took effect. Staff recently elected reps to a Special Negotiating Body (SNB) which will negotiate a replacement.

The results of the election reinforce the widespread support amongst staff – whether union members or not, for Fujitsu Voice and the role that union members played in making it as effective as possible. Staff elected union members to nine out of the ten seats and former Fujitsu Voice reps to seven out of the ten seats.

It remains to be seen whether the company will enter these negotiations in good faith to produce a good quality agreement or stick as closely as they can to the bare legal minimum.

There is no guarantee that the new body will cover vital issues such as redundancy, pay and benefits. The only way staff can be sure of having a real say on these issues is to win union recognition. As well as being part of our current industrial action, any employee (member or non-member) can register their support for union recognition and collective bargaining via www.ourunion.org.uk/voiceless. If enough employees do this in a particular part of the company, they can win union recognition. Wouldn’t it be better if everyone had the rights that Manchester staff have already won?

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Fujitsu Fightback is growing in strength

Pickets at Fujitsu Manchester

Today saw the second day of national strike action by Fujitsu staff in a dispute over 1800 proposed job cuts, union recognition, pay and pensions.

Fujitsu was already stretched due to many staff in Northern Ireland taking St Patrick’s Day off. Support for the action was strong across the country. Not only was this the last working day before Fujitsu plans to start dismissing staff as redundant, but Fujitsu has continued notifying more and more staff that they are at risk, including people who believed they were previously safe. Workers were also angry at the company’s response to union attempts to avoid compulsory redundancies – instead of helping, the company says it is “investigating” what the union has done! New members continue to join the union.

Read more ›

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National Unite @ Fujitsu leaflet

In advance of Friday’s strike over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions this “one per desk” leaflet is being distributed at Fujitsu sites around the country.

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More strike days called

Unite has given the company official notification of further UK-wide Fujitsu Services Limited strike days in our campaign over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions:

  • Two 24 hour stoppages commencing at 00:01 hours on Friday 24th March 2017 & Monday the 27th March 2017

This further action was agreed by the UNITE national combine committee following consultation and feedback with members across the country and is in addition to the strike called on Friday 17th March

Campaigning activities for these strike days will be discussed by the combine committee next week and reps would welcome your views on potential campaigning activities for these dates.

The ongoing action previously called continues until further notice:

  • Refusal to cooperate with or participate in projects to move work offshore, including knowledge transfer
  • Refusal to undertake time recording (e.g. SST) or forecasting (e.g. MyTime)
  • Work to rule and withdrawal of goodwill
  • Ban on overtime

Further details will be announced about arrangements for the strike day and other campaigning activities.

Unite will continue pressing Fujitsu to lift the threat of impending compulsory redundancies and negotiate a settlement.

 

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Next strike day. Ongoing industrial action. NHS demo tomorrow.

Unite has given the company official notification of the next UK-wide Fujitsu Services Limited strike day in our campaign over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions:

  • 24 hour stoppage commencing at 00:01 hours on Friday 17th March 2017

This is the last normal working day in GB before the company proposes to make the first redundancy dismissals on Monday 20th March. In Northern Ireland it is the St Patrick’s Day bank holiday, when most people will not be scheduled to work. This will increase the impact of the strike action across the UK, as fewer people will be working anyway.

The ongoing action previously called continues until further notice:

  • Refusal to cooperate with or participate in projects to move work offshore, including knowledge transfer
  • Refusal to undertake time recording (e.g. SST) or forecasting (e.g. MyTime)
  • Work to rule and withdrawal of goodwill
  • Ban on overtime

Further details will be announced about arrangements for the strike day and other campaigning activities.

Unite will continue pressing Fujitsu to lift the threat of impending compulsory redundancies and negotiate a settlement.

If you are attending the #ourNHS demonstration in London tomorrow, please take along some copies of our Appeal for Support leaflet to give out – the more campaigning we do when we’re not striking, the less strike action will be needed to bring the dispute to a successful conclusion.

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Fujitsu national strike day reports

Manchester picket with banner reading "Fighting 4 jobs"

Well done to everyone who took part in the strike today, including those who joined Unite on the picket line. A national strike was a huge blow in our fight for jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions. Well done to the non-union-members who struck too – though of course they would be better off joining.

A particular thank you to the strikers who played an active part. Many picketed, while others who for reasons of health or geography couldn’t picket had other campaign activities.

All the planned pickets went off successfully, starting in Warrington at 5:30am, where pickets turned away some deliveries. This is significant because this site is the company’s UK warehouse (threatened with outsourcing to DHL), so non-deliveries can have a real impact. A number of people who didn’t join in were impressed with the picket and said they would next time. The pickets featured in a report in the Warrington Guardian.

As well as Warrington, pickets took place in Basingstoke, Belfast, Birmingham/Solihull, Blackpool, Bracknell, Crewe, London, Manchester, Stevenage and Wakefield.

Other media coverage included Computer Weekly, The Register, Socialist Worker, The Socialist, Belfast Live and BOB FM.

The London picket coincided with a senior management meeting about the job cuts (they seemed to appreciate the megaphone outside), and was joined by Unite Assistant General Secretary Tony Burke.

Pickets at Fujitsu's London HQ with placards

Fujitsu’ London HQ (LON22) in Baker St

Picket at Fujitsu's London HQ with Unite AGS Tony Burke

Workers in Blackpool staged a picket despite it being a tiny site, ably assisted by a picket dog.

Dog in hi-viz jacket with picket signs

Blackpool

Other sites staged impressive pickets too.

Picket at Solihull

Solihull

Picket at Stevenage Stevenage TUC banner

Stevenage turnstile entrance

Stevenage

Picket at Wakefield

Wakefield

Pickets at Basingstoke

Basingstoke

Picket at Belfast

Belfast

Picket at Bracknell

Bracknell

Picket at Crewe

Crewe

Reps on the redundancy consultation body (CCG) had asked the company in good time to rearrange today’s meeting (which was due to be held in Solihull) because of the strike, but the company refused. Only when it became apparent that (at most) one of the 46 reps, many of whom are not union members, intended to take part in a meeting on a strike day did the company accept that the meeting couldn’t go ahead. The company then complained about how hard it was to rearrange things at short notice! Perhaps if they listened to the reps, staff would feel less need to go on strike.

The company’s insensitivity has been a big factor in the strength of feeling behind the action. Fancy writing out to thousands of people you are threatening with redundancy and asking them to “come on this journey with us”.

The Manchester picket was hit by a blizzard, but that didn’t prevent strikers staging a pancake race and pancake tossing competition.

Manchester picket with banner reading "Fighting 4 jobs"

Snowy scene with pickets

Pickets get refreshments under gazebo in blizzard

Pickets tossing pancakes

 

Pancake race

Continuing the theme, don’t forget that Unite has called on Fujitsu Services Limited employees in the UK to give up a number of things for Lent (until further notice):

  • continuous refusal to cooperate with or participate in projects to move work offshore, including knowledge transfer
  • continuous refusal to undertake time recording (e.g. SST) or forecasting (e.g. MyTime)
  • continuous ban on overtime
  • continuous work to rule and withdrawal of goodwill

Talk to your colleagues about taking part in this action – whether they struck or not. The more people who participate the greater the pressure on Fujitsu to resolve the dispute.

The elected Combine Committee which represents Unite members across Fujitsu in the UK is having a call tomorrow to decide what further action to ask Unite to call in pursuit of a settlement over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions.

Details of how members can claim their Dispute Benefit will be circulated in the next few days. There’s a Q&A about the dispute, an appeal for support leaflet and other key information on the national dispute page.

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Unite members across Fujitsu Services Limited in the UK are taking industrial as part of their dispute over jobs, union recognition, pay and pensions. Action from 28 February has included strikes and ongoing action short of strike. Further strikes have been called for 22, 25, 26 May.

This follows the recent resolution of a local dispute in Manchester which included 12 strike days.

Further information is available here including events, pickets, a downloadable appeal for support leaflet and how to donate to our strike fund.

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