On Monday 27th November a large group of Bristol IWW members conducted a ‘March on the Boss’ at the offices of a Care Company in Bristol.
The company mainly employs migrant workers from Zimbabwe and it was alledged that they had dismissed an IWW Pan African Workers Association (PAWA) member without a disciplinary hearing and owed £2,000 in deducted wages and notice.
The worker had already found a new job but had attempted to formally contact the company for a grievance hearing to address the outstanding payments. The company failed to respond to requests for a grievance hearing at a suitable time and had not responded to further emails.
The Bristol IWW branch organised a protest where our members and the worker entered the head offices of the care company and issued our demands. The protest continued outside the offices for over an hour whilst the worker and her reps negotiated with the management. We made it clear that we were not leaving without the payments owed and eventually reached an agreement. The worker was paid all £2,000 she was owed there and then and the protest ended following this victory!
Bristol IWW would like to thank all those who attended and helped get justice for our member. It is important to highlight that both the member and her IWW rep are members of the Pan-African Workers Association. This is a major success and stepping stone for the organisation as this is the first direct action taken by the group since it was formed in affiliation with the IWW earlier this year.
The IWW and PAWA together are shaking up the care industry and fighting back against the exploitation of migrant workers in the UK. We encourage others in the care industry to follow the directions issued by PAWA to unionise, fight back and win!