A few weeks ago, a worker came to us with a dispute over an employer withholding Statutory Sick Pay, notice period pay and outstanding holiday entitlement owed to her.
We are an anarcho-syndicalist union based in Brighton. We have ongoing campaigns in Hospitality and in Health & social care, but we aim to organise with workers of all industries and none.
Brighton SolFed has started a public campaign against Imperial Hotel. This hotel owes a former worker part of his wages, including his notice pay, holiday entitlement, money stolen from his pay, and sick pay. While he was working in another hotel, which is also owned by the owner of Imperial, on what should have been his day off, the worker sustained an injury to his finger. As a result, he stayed off sick for one month. He did not receive any sick pay or compensation. The manager told him that he could not claim anything because he had been working for less than one month when it happened and because it was his fault.
The end of the dispute held with Brighton Proud Cabaret after an economical agreement. As we have informed previously, a former chef terminated his employment after being pressured by his manager to go to work when he was sick, which resulted in him being removed from the work rota and the payroll system. Then, the worker was owed part of his wage including unpaid hours, holiday entitlement and notice pay. However, he decided to renounce his notice pay as he was a bit unclear and in debt, in order to facilitate a fast solution.
On September the 12th, almost 200 people tried to stop a fascist march against refugees in the streets of Dover. The march was made up of more than 200 members from groups such as National Front, South East Alliance or BNP, with the objective of reaching Dover harbour to the cry of “refugees, go home!”. This triggered violent confrontations with the antifascists and the Police causing several injured people. It is the third fascist demonstration in the city of Dover this year.
During a September Saturday Brighton SolFed held a network and skills day covering; the immigration act and healthcare, the attack on benefits, fighting wage theft and anarchists on austerity. This full day, including a mighty lunch prepared by members, maintained a constant level of debate and information, concluding in practical action points to continue agitating around Brighton and beyond.
Brighton-SolFed has started a public campaign against Brighton Proud Cabaret. This place, belonging to a company which owns another two venues in London, owes a former worker part of his wages, including most of his holiday entitlement.
I work in admin at one of the universities in the city. Recently, one of my colleagues left the department for a new job. It was expected that I would take on some of their workload. This was not something I could really do, and when I started to be asked, I found it stressful. I talked about it at the drop-in, and a number of useful suggestions were made.
Summertime is proving to be a period of intense activity for Brighton-SolFed. We are constantly being contacted by hospitality workers who endure, amongst other forms of exploitation, wage and holiday theft. In some cases actions have followed suit given the impunity under which some employers operate in the city. Below are some brief notes on two of our most recent achievements.
Brighton Hospitality Workers was approached in May by a Kitchen Porter, at an upmarket and busy restaurant on the seafront, who had been laid off without 7 days’ notice period pay and with unpaid wages and holiday entitlement. An all-too-common situation in a city where bosses flagrantly breach employment law to squeeze as much from the workers as possible, in the full knowledge that the local authorities, trade bodies or established unions have no interest in challenging them.
With all the world-wide Pride events taking place, it's easy to forget where and how it all began. The Stonewall Riot in NYC occurred during the year 1969, when continued police harassment at The Stonewall gay bar in Greenwich Village prompted the community to fight back. In the days that followed, thousands of people came out to protest police brutality and inequality for gay people.
The ‘living wage’ is an annual estimation of the average wage needed to cover in a realistic way the expenses of a person living in the UK. It is also a demand made by different unions and civil organizations in the UK and sets the ‘subsistence salary’ at £7.85 per hour (except for London, where the ‘living wage’ is £9.15 per hour).
Latest edition of our regular newsletter, including articles on hospitality workers conflicts, the radical bank project, state repression in Spain and workers' rights advice. For workers control and self-organisation, enjoy!
On 19. July 1936, the Spanish state collapsed, after the fascist militar coup. The revolutionary working class expelled the military from many areas of the country and made the most developed experience of self-management that eever happened. Eventually the Spanish Revolution failed both due to its enemies and its own mistakes.
Today, almost 80 years later, our intention is not to create a myth, beautiful but harmless. We want to recover this part of the history of the Spanish revolutionaires which is the history of all freedom lovers and, of course, give tribute to those who gave their lives for the emancipation of humanity.
Healthcare should be available to all. The need for care outweighs any excuse to restrict access to healthcare, for example whether they have the ability to pay or where they have come from. Yet the Immigration Act of 2014 is trying to reverse this. It affects many areas of life such as housing and health. The aim of it is to punish those who are vulnerable. It is part of an ideology that is racist, and aims to divert attention away from those who benefit from capitalism, stigmatising other areas of society.
This pamphlet, written by members of Brighton SolFed’s Health and Social Care Network, with support from Brighton Migrant Solidarity and Docs Not Cops, looks at how it is affecting the NHS and how it aims to make health workers do the dirty work of the government by policing the people they treat. This is through administrative oppression creating gatekeepers to health.
The Brighton SolFed Health & Social Care network holds drop-in surgeries on the last Monday of each month. The next one will be on Monday 27th July, 7 - 9 pm at the Saint Georges Tavern, near Sussex County Hospital (33 Upper Sudeley Street, Kemp Town, BN2 1HE).
We recently launched our new pamphlet on the implications of the Immigration Act for NHS workers, including ways to collectively sabotage the attempt to make frontline health workers gatekeepers to the state's anti-migrant agenda.
We welcome all workers in the sector, whether NHS, private, or voluntary / charity.
If you've any workplace issues you'd like to discuss with SolFed members working in health or social care, then come along on Monday.