RMT member Joe Thompson was left with a bloody nose and split lip said: “After what happened to Jerome I was afraid to defend myself as I have people at home depending on my wages”.
Picket line begins early morning.
An hour later the transport cops arrive in force...
...to take statements following an assault.
Meanwhile at City Hall....
...another RMT strike is brewing...
...as the cleaners demonstrate over their pay and treatment.
Cleaners working for contractors on London Underground are continuing their fight for a living wage and against the suspension of several workers by the ISS company. The workers, who are members of the RMT union, struck for three days earlier this month against their employers – ISS, Initial, ICS and GBM.
The strikers, who are mainly migrant workers, are demanding decent pay and conditions. Following the strike a number of workers at ISS have been suspended after they received letters telling them that their national insurance numbers are wrong. At present some cleaners are paid just over £5.50 an hour. They face harassment and intimidation from management, and are under constant threat from the Home Office. The cleaners and their supporters demonstrated outside London mayor Boris Johnson’s question time at City Hall on Wednesday of last week. Johnson said that cleaners on Metronet contracts – a company he now controls – would be paid the London living wage of £7.45 an hour “by August at the latest”. But in a later statement he said that this would apply only to those contracts up for renewal next month. That would leave cleaners on Metronet’s ITS contract, which is not due for renewal until 2009, being paid nearly £2 an hour less than fellow workers doing identical work.
Cleaners on TubeLines contracts on the Jubilee, Piccadilly and Northern lines would have to endure poverty pay until those contracts are up for renewal – in up to four years time!
Phillip Mambuliya, the chair of the RMT’s cleaners’ grade of the Finsbury Park branch said: “The union is attempting to find ways and means to stop the suspension of our members. Many of those suspended have worked for the companies for a number of years and have only now been told their national insurance numbers are wrong.”