Practical workplace organising tips and experiences

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lucy82
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Joined: 31-05-04
Nov 6 2005 15:25
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One of the places I work the biggest union (unison) person in my dept is the arsehole boss who gives everyone shit all the time. Yesterday she was trying to get people to join and go to a meeting about the restructuring...

uncanny. my experience exactly eek your not secreatly working for salford in housing are you?

we had a workplace meeting last week without the managers about the restructure/stock transfer process and everyone is very scared. i argued for keeping said UNISON convenor/line manager out of the planned UNISON members meetings and in principle everyone agreed there is a real conflict of interest and numerous people gave examples of this (including me) but of course, then a few people started on the "well, shes a nice person and it must be hard for her too" crap. eventually there was a tentative agreement that we'd vote to see whether we were gonna push it to keep her out of our discussions but i think, when push comes to shove, people will back down for fear of offending her.

Quote:
ways of cutting metal sheep consumption when producing these industrial lamp shades

hey JDMF, metal sheep?

grin

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Ramona
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Joined: 19-09-03
Nov 6 2005 15:29

Yeah, you really need to watch yr metal sheep consumption, thise things can reak havok in your innards sad

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JDMF
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Joined: 21-05-04
Nov 6 2005 16:46

it was the vegan in me grin Metal sheets, sheets folks, sheets!

They were in these HUGE rolls which had to be moved using these HUGE machines, very dangerous, and about 3 minutes intro on how to do it grin I think they weighed few tons each...

lucy82
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Joined: 31-05-04
Nov 6 2005 19:13

its not just sheep metal. i got 15 minutes intro before going out on the MEAN streets, man. tongue

like, get the person to go upstairs before you do when calling on people in their homes (a lot of the flats are upstairs and its kindof scary when the front door shuts and your upstairs in a flat with some guy you don't have a clue about). oh yeah, and the other piece of training was if they seem edgy and aggressive leave. hmm very easy when your upstairs in someones living room with the space of a room to cross, a door, a landing, stairs and a front door before you get to the outside world.

best not to think about these things. the company doesn't give a shit. the lone working health and safety managers working group has been meeting for over three months now and not come up with any conclusions (i suspect because anything other than us just getting on with it and trying not to think about it costs money). it is fucking stressful though. its always at the back of my mind when some guy shuts the door. and if you try to make the issue more important (given that odd incidents of people being trapped, hit and on one occasion raped have happened) theres always some "nice" colleague who twists it so its you whose the wimp for being bothered. theres a real culture at work about being tough enough to deal with it. i sometimes think its not so much the management that really piss me off as some of the people i work with who go creeping to the management agenda and the satisfaction of their own egos.

but thats the problem and i cant think of any practical way of dealing with it. i've tried talking with other people i work with and raising it with management. i don't think i can take it any further. when it comes to any real conflict people just split down the middle and the management win.

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Steven.
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Joined: 27-06-06
May 11 2006 00:21

Right well this is a very worthy thread so a well-deserved bump.

I've had a couple of neat workplace victories recently, one individual, one collective; very small but hey, gotta start somewhere.

Job 1 - individual

My team there's me and 3 other part-time staff + some full-timers. We recently got made from casuals into salaried workers on short-term contracts due to the actions of one of our team (B) who requested it from HR (and I'd been thinking for months about how to organise + do it, ha ha). So now we have holiday pay. We work 2 people per night, and recently me and my Monday colleague (A) have had days off every bank hol monday, on full pay. I realised the other two (B+C) weren't getting any time off. I spoke to A who wasn't so bothered, then to B+C telling them about this, and that it was unfair. At a previous job they pro-ratad bank hols, so if they did that here me and A would lose out. So I suggested to B+C that we request they get TOIL to match us - so they come up to our level on benefits, and none of us lose out. C thought it wasn't worth it at first, but B did, and when they both realised that it was like 8 days work per year, with money value almost equivalent to an extra month's wages they were keen. I approached our line manager a couple of times, from my position of privilege, expressing concern for the others, she said she'd look into but didn't. So we all approached her again, and she did look into it, then hey presto B+C (and "D" when the new post is opened) have been given toil for the bank hols there have been since the new contracts, plus any in future.

Just demanding stuff can win you things in some places, cos I'm not totally sure of this, but I have the strong feeling that lots of big orgs have deals struck with unions giving workers rights, but staff are not told about them, and managers are encouraged to fudge any asking about them (they probably don't know either, but I suspect they're told to just say no unless people get very persistent).

Similarly a while back me and a colleague got back-pay we were first denied by our manager for missing work on July 7. I was spurred into getting together to demand it by an article in the Sun! (Which slagged off an employer for not paying its workers.)

Will do Job 2 story tomorrow i think...