No let up in #ENGAME tour against BTFS outsourcing
Telecoms & Financial Services December 7 2018A third week of heavy duty CWU campaigning against BT ‘s plans to outsource its Facilities Services division has just drawn to a close – underlining the CWU’s determination to expose the folly of a move that has sent shivers through the wider workforce.
Today (Friday) it was the turn of Adastral Park to feel the heat of the union’s #ENDGAME campaign, with CWU protesters making their presence felt outside the company’s pioneering research centre near Ipswich.
Despite horrendous weather and no shelter whatsoever from torrential rain and high winds, the intrepid bunch put up a spirited demonstration which will not have gone unnoticed by BT and our BTFS members inside the facility who have already made contact with the union.
Amid mounting fears as to what the outsourcing to ISS and CBRE will mean for job security and terms & conditions – especially the prized ‘Real Living Wage’ levels that BT currently pays as a minimum in BTFS – no fewer than 20 BTFS members working at Adastral Park attended a branch meeting last week, all supporting the CWU’s campaigning.
CWU NEC member Tracey Fussey, who was one of those who got wet to the skin at today’s Adastral Park protest said: “While standing in torrential rain and driving winds for the best part of two hours cannot exactly be described as ‘fun’, it was worth every minute knowing what our presence meant to our members inside.
“It’s obviously also vital that we keep reinforcing the message to BT that the union is not going to back off on this issue.”
In a week that has seen no fewer than five demonstrations take place, other locations targeted by the CWU were:
- BT’s Stadium House in Cardiff on Monday – with a simultaneous demonstration outside the company’s Northallerton Depot in North Yorkshire
- BT’s Sovereign Street site in Leeds on Tuesday – with a simultaneous demonstration taking place outside North Star House in Swindon
Tracey continued: “At every single one of the sites we’ve visited this week, the union’s presence and the forcefulness of the position we are taking on this ill-conceived outsourcing was warmly welcomed by members.
“It was particularly touching that, at Northallerton, the CWU protest was joined by a large group of housekeepers who are frankly terrified what a transfer to ISS will mean for them. We were also warmly welcomed by our BT Fleet members at the site, who obviously have worries of their own following recent press speculation which, while unconfirmed, has been deeply unsettling for many.
Next week the CWU’s #ENDGAME campaigning will continue with a vengeance, with protests scheduled to take place outside BT’s Alexander Bain House on Monday and the Ruston Road site in Lincoln on Friday.
Assistant secretary Sally Bridge concludes: “All the protests present the same message to BT that it needs to ‘Stop Playing Games’ with the livelihoods of loyal employees.
“Going round the country it’s been heartrending to witness just how fearful these people are for the future.
“The fact that, at present, we cannot give them any of the reassurances they crave has stiffened the union’s resolve to achieve everything we possibly can for our BTFS members in the talks that lie ahead and, in the meantime, to continue exposing BT’s betrayal of this section of its workforce through our #ENDGAME campaign.”