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Social Work Action Network Ireland 1st Annual Conference

September 29, 2013 admin 0

“Building Alliance, Defending Services” – the Social Work Action Network Ireland 1st Annual Conference.

The theme of the conference will be building alliances in the struggle to defend services and challenge austerity measures.

The Social Work Action Network Ireland (SWAN Ireland) is a growing grassroots network of people who are concerned about the increase in structural inequalities in Irish society, the attacks on basic services and supports that the welfare state has traditionally provided people and the increasing privatisation of our once public services.

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Practice notes: social security, benefits and the role of social workers

September 23, 2013 admin 0

SWAN London, with assistance from a number of supporters including WinVisible, Kilburn Unemployed Workers Group and the Zacchaeus 2000 Trust have produced this latest edition to the SWAN practice notes series. The topic on this occasion is a radical response to welfare reforms and benefits. Please download and distribute this workplace tool!

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International call out against new proposal to criminalise homelessness in Hungary

September 21, 2013 admin 0

On Thursday, 19th of September 2013, the Hungarian “City is for All” (A varos mindenki√©) initiative issued a call for solidarity with homeless people in Hungary. It is based on the planned new changes to the Hungarian Penal Code, which would once again treat homelesness as an infraction punishable by fine, community service or jail (for “repeat offenders”). This is the latest of a series of oppressive measures that the Hungarian government implemented against the homeless people in this country over the past three years.

SWAN London will be holding a demonstration outside Hyde Park Corner Underground station on Saturday 28th September from 12pm in order to gather signatures and support against this proposal. A petition will then be delivered to the Hungarian Embassy.

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Social care workers show solidarity to Hovis Zero Hours Strikers

September 21, 2013 admin 0

A critical issue for the labour movement is the use of zero hours contracts by unscrupulous employers, which enable them to guarantee no regular hours of work. This leaves their workers living dreadfully precarious lives, living from week to week without knowing what their pay cheque might look like. We are delighted to receive this report from Malcolm Jones of North West SWAN, who, along with other social workers and home care workers has been on the picket line supporting Hovis workers in their dispute against Premier Foods. There have been two rounds of strikes – while the Bakers Food & Allied Workers Union are now in talks (as of 19th September 2013) with bosses about their use of zero hours contracts – a third round of strikes is planned if no resolution is found. SWAN National Steering Committee offers their full support and solidarity.

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SWAN backs the Glasgow Homeless Casework Team unofficial strike

September 17, 2013 admin 0

This week SWAN has learned about the unofficial strike by social workers in the North and East Community Homeless Casework Team of Glasgow City Council, who are members of Unison. They walked out on Friday 13th September, following the suspension of a colleague who refused to cover the work of vacant posts. UPDATE: wildcat strikers returned to work on Wednesday 18th September, pending official industrial action as their member was reinstated to their position and talks with management were agreed. See foot of article.

Unite the Resistance reported yesterday (Monday 16th September), that the strike had escalated across the whole service following a union meeting of 60 people, after talks with management over workload failed to resolve the issues. The workers are demanding management take action to prevent excessive workloads by agreeing to a cap of 35 cases per worker.