YOUNG workers have scored a massive victory in east London, winning the London living wage and backdated pay for over-18s.
Union Unite and its London young members’ committee campaigned for around 1,000 young workers in Tower Hamlets who were “short-changed” by Greenwich Leisure Ltd (GLL), London’s largest leisure centre employer.
Activists pointed out that, despite being a living wage-accredited employer, LLW paid 18 to 20-year-olds just £8.10 an hour in Camden, Croydon, Ealing, Lambeth, Tower Hamlets and Waltham Forest.
But Tower Hamlets Council caved in to the pressure on Wednesday night, agreeing to pay the full living wage of £10.20, backdating the rise to April.
Labour Mayor John Biggs publicly welcomed the agreement, though some union activists voiced frustrations that young Labour rightwingers had tried to shut the campaign down.
Unite regional officer for young members Mercedes Sanchez said that this has proved that “there is no obstacle, legal or otherwise, stopping councils and GLL doing the right thing.
“This also once again shows the value of union membership and organisation. Nobody else took this issue up.”
Syed Nahid Uddin, a Unite young member in Tower Hamlets, told the Star that the victory was an achievement of “class unity,” which has “established the primacy of union organising” over the hopes of “opportunist, career-minded young politicians” holding back pay justice in London.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £1 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.