At conference last year our Branch Secretary made contact with the people co-ordinating the campaign for ISS cleaners on Merseyside . We discussed if we could get our cleaners to join PCS again as they had all previously left. If we could get them to rejoin could we then get them to a position to where they felt able to take action?
I had previously been in touch with the organiser before on the subject. He kindly offered to come down to speak to the cleaners and I was able to get a few of the cleaners to meet with him.
From that initial meeting two of us agreed to go up to Bootle on 21 June to meet with Phil and some of the cleaners who had been balloted for strike action on 16 &17 July.
Since returning from Bootle I started having regular meetings with the cleaners.The important thing is that we all keep in touch now either through meetings or WhatsApp group which we set up as not all cleaners are able to get to the meetings. We have succeeded in re recruiting them to the PCS.
Staff from the Regional Office were very supportive.They have attended some of our meetings. We had leafletting session outside the office 16 December with a few of the cleaners to try and raise their profile.
After a few false starts we finally got NDC submission accepted. We had a fantastic turnout and vote to strike.
So now we are looking forward to Monday. We will be leafletting staff from CCH to get them behind us. We will be holding a rally assisted by the Town Committee with PCS President Fran Heathcote, Midlands TUC and councillors speaking.
This is the first time any of the cleaners have taken action, they are nervous but up for the fight.
ISS cleaners in Birmingham, Bootle and Liverpool will be on strike on Monday 16th and Tuesday 17th March.