Thank you to our friends and supporters at Mears

Whilst on the picket line today our friends and supporters from Mears dropped off doughnuts and chocolate which was most welcome on a blowy day! Despite the weather we still had a good turnout.

The feedback from the leafleting at the Everywoman in Tech forum yesterday was very positive with more activities planned for the coming days.

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Thanks to all our supporters in and outside of Fujitsu, it is appreciated!

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Fujitsu – letting down every woman

This morning, as Fujitsu staff in Manchester start their 7-day strike, strikers and supporters will be protesting outside the everywoman in Tech Forum taking place at London’s Park Lane Hilton. Fujitsu is one of everywoman’s Corporate Partners, but is letting women down badly.

Protesters will be handing out this leaflet which explains how Fujitsu is letting down women by failing to respond properly to allegations of sexual harassment, unequal pay and discrimination.

It’s time Fujitsu sat down with Unite to resolve these issues rather than picking on those who speak out.

For more information about the dispute see tiny.cc/fujitsudispute.

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Fujitsu Manchester start 7-day strike tomorrow

Following strikes on 24-26 and 30 January, the next Fujitsu Manchester strike is for seven days, from Thursday 8 to Wednesday 14 February, ending on Valentine’s Day in the middle of Heart Unions week.

Crowd with banners #FujitsuFightback No Compulsory Redundancies, Victimising Reps, Breaking AgreementsThe action is over:

  • Compulsory Redundancies
  • Victimisation of union reps
  • Breaches of Redundancy agreements, including appeal and grievance procedures

Pickets and protests will be from 7-10am on each weekday strike day at Fujitsu, Central Park, Northampton Road, Manchester, M40 5BP (opposite Central Park metrolink station).

Details of other strike day activities have been sent to members by email.

For more information, including how supporters can help, see tiny.cc/fujitsudispute.

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Support building, next strike tomorrow

Crowd gathering with banners and placards in Piccadilly GardensThe campaign over Fujitsu’s compulsory redundancies, victimisation of union reps, and breaches of agreements has taken several important steps forward.

The third wave of strikes get under way in Manchester with the three-day strike on 24-26 January. Friday saw an impressive joint strike rally alongside Unite strikers from Mears and First Bus Rusholme as well as supporters. People gathered in Piccadilly Gardens and spontaneously marched to the packed rally at the Mechanics Institute.

Speakers from the three disputes were joined by Graham

Photo: Becci Heagney

Stringer, MP for Blackley and Broughton, and

Lynn Collins, secretary of the North-West TUC.

You can watch a video of most of the speeches:

The “Reinstate Ian Allinson” statement (tiny.cc/reinstateian) launched this week is rapidly attracting signatories from across the labour movement pledging to campaign for Ian’s reinstatement and build support and solidarity for the Fujitsu dispute.

We strike again tomorrow (Tuesday 30 January) and supporters are welcome to protest in support of the pickets at Fujitsu, Central Park, Northampton Road, Manchester, M40 5BP between 7-10am.

For more details of how to support us, see our dispute page.

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Fujitsu strikes – rally tomorrow

Crowd with banners #FujitsuFightback No Compulsory Redundancies, Victimising Reps, Breaking AgreementsFujitsu Manchester has started its strike action and action short of strike with a 3-day strike 24-26 January.

Tomorrow, Friday 26 January, strikers from Fujitsu will join strikers from Mears / Manchester Working and First Bus at a lunchtime rally. As well as activists from the three long-running disputes, speakers include Graham Stringer MP and Lynn Collins, secretary of the North-West TUC. (Press release, Facebook event).

Some of us are gathering in Piccadilly Gardens at 12:00 to walk together to the rally at 12:30 in the Mechanics Institute, 103 Princess Street, Manchester, M1 6DD (entrance on Major St). Come and show your support.

The Fujitsu dispute is over compulsory redundancies, victimisation of reps, and breaches of redundancy agreements.

One of the reps fighting victimisation is Ian Allinson, dismissed on 12 January after 30 years’ service including 26 as a union rep. A “Reinstate Ian Allinson” statement has been launched which is collecting signatures from across the labour movement. Read the statement and add your name via http://tiny.cc/reinstateian

For more information about the dispute and how to support us see our dispute page.

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Supporters rally as Ian Allinson is dismissed (updated)

Thanks to everyone who turned out today for the show of support as Ian Allinson (the chair of Unite, Fujitsu UK)  was dismissed under the pretext of redundancy. Current and former colleagues were joined by strikers from Mears/Manchester Working and First Bus, the Hazards campaign, Manchester TUC, UNISON, PCS and more. Given that the event was organised at less than 48 hours’ notice the turnout was encouraging for the ongoing campaign.

Crowd with flags and banners

Fujitsu Unite rep Kevin Davies, Billy Sinclair from Mears and Hilda Palmer from Hazards paid tribute to Ian’s contribution to the trade union movement in Fujitsu and beyond.

Unite Fujitsu rep Kevin Davies addresses the rallyBilly from the Mears strike addresses the rally

Hilda Palmer from Hazards addresses rally

Ian Allinson speaking at the rallyIan then addressed the gathering, reminding people that he was one of six members fighting to stay in Fujitsu, and the fourth of these to be dismissed. The majority of the six are ethnic minority, the majority are disabled, and two are union reps. Fujitsu had dismissed the first two despite there being jobs available in their department which other members had turned down. One of these, Saj Patel, was dismissed before the company investigated her grievance (in breach of agreements) – she had complained of sexual harassment and claimed this was linked to her selection for redundancy. The third member was told on Thursday 28th December that he was being dismissed on Sunday 31st December. Ian had found out that he was being dismissed on Tuesday while on compassionate leave for a family funeral.

Ian argued that the attack on the union – victimising reps and breaking agreements – isn’t an accident. It is intended to make it easier for Fujitsu to push through job cuts and other detrimental changes in future, and to make it harder for staff to get their share of any of the settlement of the NHS contract dispute, which is expected in the next three months and could be hundreds of millions of pounds.

There’s a video of the rally here:

As part of the campaign against compulsory redundancies, victimisation of reps, and breaches of agreements, Fujitsu Manchester strikes have already been called for:

  • Wed 24 – Fri 26 Jan 2018
  • Tue 30 Jan 2018
  • Thu 8 Feb – Wed 14 Feb 2018

Whether or not the campaign is successful in winning his own reinstatement, Ian argued that it is vital that Fujitsu learns that victimising reps is an experience it never wanted to repeat. Ian ended his speech warning that Fujitsu should “expect the unexpected”.

Ian and other Fujitsu workers will be attending the fundraising gig for the Mears strikers on Sunday.

For details of how to support the Unite @ Fujitsu campaign, including an updated appeal for support leaflet and how to donate to the strike fund, see our dispute page.

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Fujitsu strikes called. Ian Allinson to be dismissed on Friday.

Industrial action ballot result – Fujitsu Services Limited, Manchester bargaining unit

Thanks to everyone who voted in the industrial action ballot. The official announcement of the result is here on the intranet. In summary:

Are you prepared to take part in strike action? Yes 54.9%, No 45.1%, Spoilt papers 0
Are you prepared to take part in industrial action short of a strike? Yes 71.8%, No 28.2%, Spoilt papers 0
Turnout 55%

This is a clear result in favour of both strike action and action short of strike. The turnout was very good given the disruption caused by the Christmas holidays.

Ian’s dismissal

Fujitsu has already dismissed three of the six members who are fighting against compulsory redundancy. On Tuesday, while he was on compassionate leave for a family funeral, Fujitsu sent Ian Allinson a letter telling him that he will be dismissed this Friday (12 January) after more than 30 years’ service, including 26 as a union rep. Despite having an outstanding internal job application which Fujitsu has not responded to, the company is not allowing Ian to work his notice.

Given that the fight for the six jobs is not over, Ian is not organising a leaving do, but would welcome members joining him for a drink at Sunday’s solidarity gig:

Unite members at Mears / Manchester Working are striking over pay each Mon/Tue/Thu/Fri after continuous strikes over Xmas. They have organised a “band aid do” musical fundraiser 2-8pm on Sunday 14 Jan (Facebook event) at the White House Club, 193 Middleton Road, Crumpsall, M8 4JZ. This is right by the Bowker Vale Metrolink stop.

There will also be a show of support as Ian leaves site, gathering outside the front of Central Park at 1pm on Friday. (Facebook event)

Action called

Following the ballot result Unite has issued notice of industrial action in line with strike dates selected by reps in line with the decisions of the recent members’ meeting.

We are fighting over:

  • Compulsory redundancies
  • Victimisation of union reps
  • Breaches of redundancy agreement, including appeals and grievance procedures

Unite has called on members employed by Fujitsu Services Limited in the Manchester Bargaining Unit to take the following action:

Discontinuous strike action:

  • From 00:01 on Wednesday 24th January 2018 to 23:59 on 26th January 2018
  • From 00:01 on Tuesday 30th January 2018 a 24 hour stoppage
  • From 00:01 on Thursday 8th February 2018 to 23:59 on 14th February 2018

From 00:01 on Wednesday 24th January 2018 to 23:59 on 17th April 2018, continuous action short of strike consisting of:

  • refusal to cooperate with, or participate in projects to move work offshore, including knowledge transfer
  • refusal to undertake time recording (eg SST) or forecasting (eg MyTime)
  • Work to Rule/Withdrawal of Goodwill consisting of refusal to undertake tasks which fall outside of the specific tasks listed in members’ job descriptions

All employees in the bargaining unit are entitled to participate in the action, whether or not they are members, and irrespective of if or how they voted in the ballot.

For more information see our Q&A on the dispute. Look out for emails with further details of arrangements for strike days – participation will be key.

 

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'Fujitsu Whistleblower' hotline. Concerned about unethical or illegal practices? Contact the hotline on 0800 852 7479 or fujitsu.whistleblowers@unitetheunion.org. It is run by Unite the Union and your identity will be kept strictly confidential. Don't let Fujitsu silence whistleblowers.

Unite members working for Fujitsu Services Limited in the Manchester bargaining unit have taken 32 strike days over compulsory redundancies, victimisation of reps and breaches of agreements. This follows 27 previous days of strike action.

Industrial action is currently suspended but the fight continues.

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

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