London and South East Regional Update October 2014

UCATT joints the People’s March for the NHS

UCATT activist Peter Farrell and Regional Organiser Mark Soave joined thousands of trade unionists and health campaigners to welcome the 11 “Darlo” mums and their supporters at the end of their 300-mile People’s March for the NHS from Jarrow ( The women and their supporters followed the same route as the original 1936 Jarrow Crusade. 

UCATT actvists on the NHS March

UCATT women activists find out how to get more women into construction

UCATT women activists were among those taking part in the London and South East Region’s one day event Increasing Women’s Participation in Construction at the Canary Wharf Learning Centre on 14 August. UCATT is setting up a forum to enable women building workers to meet, discuss, share, campaign and improve women’s participation in UCATT and in the construction sector.

Tessa Wright from Queen Mary University Centre for Research in Equality and Diversity presented the findings of her recently launched report The Women in Construction Project.  This looked at how women are supporting each other to gain skills, knowledge and job opportunities in the construction sector.

“Hopefully events like this will encourage more women to enter the construction industry and get involved in UCATT’s activities,” said Regional Secretary Jerry Swain.

UCATT is holding its first ever women’s weekend school at the Enterprise Centre in Derby on 25 and 26 October 2014. For more information and to register for the event please contact Melinda Roberts (E: [email protected]; T: 01332 371228) or Shirley Foley (E: [email protected]; T: 0207 622 2442). The deadline to register is Friday 17 October 2014. Overnight accommodation will be at the Jury’s Inn in Derby. Please let the union know if you require help with childcare arrangements in order to attend.

London and South East Region activists at the UCATT National Political Network Summer School

John Cahill, Dionne Dunn and Mick Gilgunn took part in the UCATT National Political Network’s (NPN) second and very successful summer school at Ruskin College, Oxford in August.  For more information about the NPN see:
“As a result of the summer school, the Region has identified a number of key seats where we will be offering a higher level of support to Labour MPs and Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs) with an interest in construction,” said Jerry.

UCATT pushes for the London Living Wage

Regional Secretary Jerry Swain has met with London Assembly member Fiona Twycross as part of UCATT’s continuing campaign to address low wages in construction and make sure that employers in the industry are paying at least the London Living Wage to all their workers – currently £8.80 per hour and due to increase next month.

“We have had a lot of success in getting the London Living Wage paid in the Kings Cross area with a number of contractors agreeing to pay it,” said Jerry. “We are also looking at section 106 agreements between councils and developers. These often specify that they should use local labour, but there is no guarantee that they will pay the Living Wage.”

UCATT targets crane drivers for recruitment and organisation

The Region is working hard to increase recruitment and organisation among tower crane drivers in the capital. The drivers have endured years of pay cuts and seen their pay fall in real terms. But while the industry is booming, their employers are not prepared to pay up. Over 180 UCATT members at crane company HTC Plant Limited were recently sent ballot papers in a dispute over pay. It likely to be the first of many involving pay rates at crane companies. - See more at:

Latest London and South East Region newsletter published

The latest issue of UCATT’s London and South East Region newsletter is available at:

UCATT supports retired members

Homes for Haringey UCATT Convenor John Cahill organised an information and training event for members retiring from the organisation at the Irish Centre in White Hart Lane in Tottenham, north London.  UCATT Regional Organiser Vince McCoy and UCATT Learning Organiser Karen King were on hand to give information, advice and guidance on further training and employment opportunities to UCATT members Tony Baker, Jim Gousling and Delroy Nooks at the event on 30 Aug 2014.

Event at Homes for Haringay

From Left to Right: Joe Cahill, Vince McCoy (seated), Karen King

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