Jeremy supports Barnet UNISON Library strikers

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“I want to pass on my personal message of support and solidarity to Barnet UNISON Library workers. It is disgraceful that almost 50% of the workforce are facing the sack.

I would like to pay tribute to Unison members’ longstanding fight – in alliance with their local community – against an ideological council which seeks to outsource all of their council services.

“I want to be clear to UNISON members in Barnet that a Labour Government under my leadership will be promoting in-house services, and removing the requirement on councils to outsource services.”

Jeremy Corbyn Leader of Labour Party

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What is going on down Barnet Council Mill Depot?


“It will be impossible to complete the work in my allotted time as a consequence of having to drive all the way to and from Harrow depot. What this could mean is an increased likelihood of Waste & Recycling left uncollected. Whoever thought selling our depot without finding another suitable depot within the borough, clearly knows nothing about Waste & Recycling services. It will be a disaster for residents and a nightmare for the staff and at what cost to the council tax payer?”

(Street Scene worker)

On Tuesday 26 July 2016, Mill Hill depot staff visited Harrow Council depot as part of the plan to split the location of Barnet Council Street Scene services.

What are Street Scene services?

  • Waste & Recycling
  • Transport – Accessible transport for children and adults
  • Parks and Open Spaces
  • Street Cleansing
  • Highways

Over the past several months our local reps and the UNISON branch office have been bombarded by members complaining about the re-location proposals for Street Scene services. » Read more

UNISON members – Register to vote in the Labour leadership Election

UNISON Response to Accommodation Office Options Review (FBC)

The Labour Party is holding an election for the leadership of the party.

To register to vote, Barnet UNISON members must:
  • Be a member of the union before 12 January 2016
  • Be a member of the affiliated political fund. This is an opt-in when you join where you agree part of your subscriptions can go into the fund.
  • Register with the Labour party as an affiliated union member

UNISON has produced a quick tool to allow members to check whether they are eligible to vote and to register as an affiliated supporter if they are eligible.

Click on this link:

UNISON Labour Affiliated Supporter Registration Tool


Remember Jeremy has supported us & been to our picket lines

Corbyn Barnet Picket web readyimgID41067066

Barnet UNISON Unified Pay Update 1: 5 July 2016.

Unison strike NLBP 02 web ready

By now all of our members should have received a letter from HR about their individual circumstances.

If you have not received your letter please alert your line manager and contact:

Unified Reward helpline on 0330 606 4444 (option 1) or email or

We have already started to receive contact from some of our members about the content of the letters.

Our office is collating the names and details and requesting that members provide copies of all communication they have had so far and any documents that they send.


We have heard some disturbing reports that staff with concerns are being told that if UNISON cannot attend a meeting in relation to their concerns they should still attend that meeting. Firstly we do not recognise this advice as HR is fully supportive of UNISON being part of the process and that includes the most important part: looking after your interests. If you are given a date, you simply need to contact the branch and we will liaise with HR to agree a new date.

Deadlines for Appeals

We understand that members are concerned about meeting deadlines. We have spoken to HR and these deadlines are going to have to be extended as we need to ensure there is adequate time to process everyone’s request.

What are some of the issues being raised?

It is really important we quickly establish what the issues are for you:

  • Grading dispute.

This where a member or a number of members believe the new grade does not reflect the work they do. In this case it is important that you register your right of Appeal and contact the UNISON office.

  • Other Payments

There are reports coming in where members are reporting that they are losing money because of changes to their other payments (not basic pay). This is not part of an appeal process but does need to be addressed as part of Unified pay. We have already alerted HR about these emerging issues. Therefore we need members to follow the same process and contact the branch with all the relevant details.

How will it all start?

As part of the process agreed with HR, there is an informal process which is in place to see if there is a way to resolve the issues without going through a formal appeal hearing. This means that the first meeting will be with you, your UNISON rep, your line manager and HR. For this meeting everyone will need to have all the relevant information in advance of the meeting. Therefore before this meeting takes place you need to meet with your UNISON rep to go through your case and be ready for the informal meeting.

3 things you need to do

  1. Ring the UNISON office on 0208359 2088 or email
  2. Provide a copy of your letter with a brief explanation of your concerns together with a copy of your completed appeal form.
  3. Provide a recent copy of your payslip.


Barnet UNISON Conference delegate met Jeremy Corbyn

Corbyn and Branch (2)

Barnet UNISON delegates had the chance this week to catch up with our old friend and long-time supporter Jeremy Corbyn.

Jeremy has long championed our fight against mass privatisation here in Barnet alongside Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell.

It was good to witness the overwhelming support for Jeremy as he addressed conference this year. Many of the things he stands for are what our members want to hear. 

We want to hear a Labour Leader be unequivocal about supporting workers’ rights and migrants. He has been unequivocal in speaking out against racism. He is wholly opposed to the ideological obsession with privatisation and for the protection of the NHS, education, real jobs and housing workers can afford to live in. 

Today the Prime Minister has issued his resignation and for the next four months the Conservative Party will be busy selecting a new leader.

Predictably, the media is already looking for Labour MPs who are calling for Jeremy to resign and this morning on the news a reference was made to a letter signed by over 50 MP’s asking Jeremy to consider his position. 

Our Barnet Unison delegation want to send a message to Jeremy:

“You have given solidarity and support for our members, your message brings hope instead of the despair promoted by Austerity Fundamentalists. Barnet UNISON is fully behind you and asks any potential challengers to reconsider and instead let’s focus our energies by promoting a positive message of how Labour will deliver more housing, jobs, confront racism and deliver an end to austerity.”

Message of support from Hendon Labour Party

The strike action being taken by Barnet’s library staff is a direct result of Tory led Barnet Council’s decision to cut the library service. Almost 50% of the jobs will be lost in this unprincipled and ideologically driven action that goes to the heart of the community.
The Library service is one of the most well loved public services in the country with thousands of Barnet residents using the service each and every week. Whether its young children with their parents exploring the wonders of books for the first time, GCSE and A level students using the library space for studying, seniors taking the opportunity to read newspapers and magazines or any one of us borrowing books to read at our leisure, the library service is central to a civilised society.
The Barnet council cuts seek to take much of this away and all of us will be the worse for it. Over the last year thousands of Barnet residents have campaigned to keep the service. Despite the campaign the cuts will mean:
§  Library posts will be cut by 46%, a loss of 52 full time equivalent posts
§  Staffed hours will be reduced by 70% (despite overwhelming opposition to this from respondents to the Council’s Library consultations)
§  Unaccompanied under 15 year-olds will not be able to use libraries for most of their opening hours
§  Library space to be reduced, thus cutting study space and book stock
§  Four libraries will be run in the future by “community groups”, volunteers replacing, not supplementing, professional library staff.
The continuing community support for the library workers and the strike action they have been forced to take will send a clear message to the Council that enough is enough. The Library service should be protected.
Sian John – Chair, Hendon Constituency Labour Party
Mike Barker – Acting Secretary, Hendon Constituency Labour Party

Solidarity Message from County Durham Trades Union Council

13227473_960462120737803_4547269236262115842_oSolidarity Message from County Durham Trades Union Council

To our brothers and sisters in Barnet UNISON –

We applaud and salute you in your courageous decision to take strike action against Barnet Council’s appalling decision to cut and out source library services across the Borough, whilst also sacking paid workers and replacing them with unpaid voluntary community groups. This is another disgusting austerity attack on hard working people, which must be resisted.

We stand with you in your fight and you have our full support in the action you are taking to protect such vital and priceless community services. Solidarity to all your members – your fight is our fight – #UnitedWeStand.



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Three day strike called by Barnet Council Library workers

Barnet UNISON Press Release: 6 June 2016 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Three day strike called by Barnet Council Library workers

UNISON members working in Barnet Libraries are taking industrial action on the 13th, 14th and 15th of June 2016 in opposition to the Council’s plan to outsource the Library Service.

What the Council intends for Barnet Libraries

  • Library posts will be cut by 46%, a loss of 52 full time equivalent posts
  • Staffed hours will be reduced by 70% (despite overwhelming opposition to this from respondents to the Council’s Library consultations)
  • Under 15 year olds unaccompanied by an adult will not be able to use libraries during unstaffed hours, which will be for most of the time libraries are open
  • Library space to be reduced, thus cutting study space and book stock
  • Four libraries to be run by “community groups”
  • Phase 3 alternative delivery model to be identified for this section.

More detailed analysis of the destruction of the Library service can be found in our report entitled “Direct and Collateral Damage to the Future of Barnet Libraries” here

UNISON Picket Lines will be at the following Barnet Libraries:

  • Monday 13th June – Mill Hill Library (Hartley Avenue, Mill Hill, London NW7 2HX) from 8.30 am
  • Tuesday 14th June – North Finchley(Ravensdale Ave, North Finchley N12 9HP) from 8.30 am followed by a demonstration outside Barnet House 12-1 pm
  • Wednesday 15th June – Chipping Barnet Library (3 Stapylton Road, Barnet, EN5 4QT) from 8.30 am

» Read more

Barnet resident refuses to volunteer & take jobs away from Library staff




For those unfamiliar with the Barnet Libraries debacle please watch this short animation which details the plans for our fantastic Library Service.

Keith Martin for local government worker, resident and long standing Libraries campaigner wrote a response to the Local Times newspaper survey “Have your say over Barnet future Library service”

Keith has given permission to share his response with our members in the Library Service.

“Would I volunteer?”

“Mrs Angry expresses my views succinctly in her Broken Barnet blog.

and here

  1. Half the staff will be losing their livelihoods,
  2. You cannot replace professional library staff with volunteers,
  3. The proposals amount to the virtual destruction of the library service,
  4. Shrinking libraries, halving the book stock, the highly risky use of unstaffed DIY libraries. All are dangerous, stupid gambles.
  5. What next?
  6. Why not instead cut the massive allowances and perks received by councillors?
  1. Now the view from me. I have been a library volunteer at Friern Barnet Community Library for nearly four years now, initially at the invitation of Phoenix and the squatters who began their occupation on 5 September 2012. My experiences are recorded in my book Friern Barnet – the library that refused to close. I was a co-defendant with the squatters in the action by Barnet Council for their eviction in December 2012, and one of the original band of trustees appointed by the community to run the library in succession to the squatters.

Would I volunteer for Reuben Thompstone’s plans to reshape the library service; to harness Barnet’s community spirit?

Would I thus be a party to putting chartered librarians and other professional library staff on the dole, after they have attempted to train unskilled volunteers such as myself to replace them? Would I be a party to actions which have as their goal the closure of libraries and the wrecking of educational opportunities to schoolchildren which generations of library users have benefitted from as their birthright?

No, I would not.

This is why I am active in the campaign to save not only libraries in Barnet but throughout the United Kingdom.

Best wishes


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