GMB Northants Community Branch
Secretary: Gordon Glassford
Summary of the branch meeting held on 31st March 2021
The candidates for general secretary had been sent questions on the Monaghan report, climate change and the involvement of young people in the GMB. All had sent their responses which had been made available to members.
The minutes from the February and March regional committee meetings had been received.
The Wortley Hall AGM will take place on 18th April by Zoom.
There will be a Re-Building Better Seminar: Trade Unions and the Local elections webinar arranged by region on April 1st. Links had been put on the WhatsApp page and on the website.
Nominations for Branch Officers Election: Had been made. More nominations can be made at the next two branch meetings.
Nomination for General Secretary Election: After a discussion Rehana Azam was selected as the branch nominee for General Secretary in the upcoming election.
The subject for the May Day meeting on May 1st will be climate change led by a speaker from the Campaign Against Climate Change. There will be a set from Banner theatre before that. The cost is a bit steep but it was felt that we should be supporting the arts.
We will be laying flowers on Workers Memorial Day at the Memorial Tree planted by the co-op party in Kettering and at the plinth in Coronation Park in Corby.
Letters had been sent out to new members and leavers had been emailed to explain their options if they wanted to stay in the GMB. Two members didn’t realise they had left and have now been reinstated. One member had died and their family will receive the GMB funeral benefit. We have 2589 members same as last month.
The branch finances remain healthy. Nine foodbanks in the county and Kettering Homestart had received standing orders and the taxi sponsorship had been paid. A payment had been paid to the British Gas strike fund and payment had been made to region for diaries. We only paid for the diaries we received not for what we ordered most of which had gone missing.
The change over to the two unitary authorities, North and West, is going quite well. All members had been TUPE’d over and were either on the same or improved rates. The North council will accept NJC terms but the West won’t. This has apparently been determined by tory councillors, not officers. We have recognition agreements in places where we didn’t have them before and we will be appointing two convenors for schools who will be given paid time off for their duties.
We are dismayed by the apparent outcome of the British Gas dispute. It seems that most of our members have had to accept the longer hours and cut in wages being imposed on them by employers.
We have won the latest round in the battle for equal pay for our ASDA members. The Supreme Court has agreed that shop floor staff (mostly female) should be paid the same as warehouse staff (mostly male). This isn’t finished. The employer hasn’t admitted defeat and seems to have bottomless pockets so there is some way to go yet.