2012 Just another year of 'Blacklisting' workers? Don't you believe it!
2012 –A year in blacklisting:
Power to the
Blacklisting support group
Electricians take industrial action in Scotland, Wales, North East, North
West and London to make blacklisting a central issue of the ongoing BESNA
Reel News release Blacklisted 2012 video
Smith v Carillion Employment Tribunal – 400 pages of unredacted documents
come into the public domain after being used as evidence in the court case.
The company provide a written statement admitting that their managers
supplied the information on the blacklist file because of union activity
and for raising safety concerns. ICO admit in evidence that “information on
some blacklist files could only have been supplied by the police or the
security services”. Carillion win the Tribunal because worker was employed
via an agency and not directly employed by the blacklisting firms.
First ever joint legal meeting to discuss blacklisting arranged by the
Blacklist Support Group takes place at Old Square Chambers co-chaired by
Professor Keith Ewing and John Hendy QC – over 20 QCs, barristers and
solicitors discuss High Court, European Court of Human Rights and
Employment Tribunal strategies.
John McDonnell MP demands a public inquiry into blacklisting following
evidence about security services involvement.
Professor Charles Woolfson announces he was blacklisted for raising
concerns about safety issues in the North Sea after the Piper Alpha
Guney Clark & Ryan solicitors start High Court proceedings on behalf of
blacklisted workers by issuing pre-action letters
300 electricians carrying “End the Blacklist” banners blockade Park Lane
rush-hour traffic outside ECA awards dinner as part of the increasingly
hostile sparks dispute. Ken Livingstone (speaker at the event) tells the
crowd that blacklisting firms should not be granted publicly funded
contracts. The very next day lead blacklisting firm Balfour Beatty withdraw
from BESNA. Electricians now target blacklisting firm NG Bailey at Morrison
supermarkets across the UK. A few days later the entire BESNA proposals
collapse - Victory to the sparks!!
The Observer newspaper runs front page lead article on police link to
blacklist. Steve Hedley (RMT Assistant General Secretary) is featured in
Blacklisting appears across the press including Radio 2 Jeremy Vine
phone-in plus media coverage in the USA, Russia and Australia.
John McDonnell MP and Michael Meacher MP both raise the call for a public
inquiry with Home Secretary, Teresa May.
Tony Jones blacklisting Employment Tribunal takes place in Manchester
against *Carillion** *and their recruitment agency *SkyBlue**, *Crown
House, Emcor, *Phoenix** *and the employment agency *Beaver Management.
Steve Acheson blacklisting claim ET against Data Dimension takes place on
the same day in the courtroom next door. Both cases are supported by UNITE
Blacklist Support Group holds meetings in Manchester and Westminster
Guney Clark & Ryan solicitors submit papers for High Court claim against
David Cameron forced to respond to John McDonnell MP questioning about
blacklisting at Prime Minister’s Questions.
Glenis Willmott MEP (Labour leader in Europe) raises issue of blacklisting
in written question to European Commission.
Judge Brain written decision throws out Tony Jones ET case for being “out
of time” as the blacklisting incidents took place many years ago (even
though evidence only came to light once the blacklist files were released).
Carillion under fire from GMB at Swindon Hospital as Liz Keates, head of
Human Resources and part of the cover-up of bullying, racism and corruption
charges by 100 low-paid Goan NHS staff is outed as a blacklister of union
Scottish Affairs Select Committee chaired by Ian Davidson MP launches
parliamentary investigation into blacklisting at Westminster – Maria Fyfe
MP is first witness with historical examples from the campaign against the
Economic League in the 1980s.
UCATT Conference passes motion on blacklisting calling for a public inquiry
and tougher laws. Roy Bentham, Steve Acheson and Tony O’Brien speak about
blacklisting at Construction Safety Campaign and Justice for Shrewsbury
Pickets fringe meetings.
600 construction workers walk out at Ratcliffe Power Station in Nottingham
in solidarity with Jason Poulter, victimised safety rep and leading UNITE
activist during the BESNA dispute. Jason Poulter is reinstated the next
GMB Conference launches a major report “*BLACKLISTING - illegal corporate
bullying endemic, systemic and deep-rooted in Carillion and other companies*"
and passes a motion on blacklisting calling for a public inquiry and
blacklisting firms to be stripped of publicly funded contracts. Swindon
strikers and Blacklist Support Group speak at official fringe meeting.
Steve Acheson moves successful motion at UNITE Conference calling for
industrial action, a public inquiry and Day of Action against blacklisting.
Steve Kelly, Steve Acheson and Dave Smith speak at fringe meetings.
National Shop Steward Network conference runs a workshop on blacklisting.
Steuart Merchant, Francie Graham and Dave Smith give evidence at Scottish
Affairs Select Committee. 10 Directors and senior managers who participated
in blacklisting named and shamed. Press coverage includes Private Eye, The
Mirror, The Guardian
Trade Union Coordinating Group of MPs Tollpuddle event in parliament
featured blacklisting with Bob Crow, John Hendy QC, Ian Murray MP and
Tommy Sheridan MSP announces that the Consulting Association spied on him
for 14 years when he was an elected politician in Scotland.
Official complaint made to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and
Development (CIPD) for an investigation into blacklisting by their members
in the construction industry in breach of the professional body’s new Code
Tollpuddle Festival saw Blacklist Support Group banner marching alongside
the Swindon strikers and BSG speakers at fringe stage alongside barrister
European Commission announces that blacklisting of safety reps will be part
of a review of safety taking place in the European parliament.
Senior journalist and NEC member of NUJ announces that she has a blacklist
file compiled by the Consulting Association.
High Court claim against Sir Robert McAlpine is formally lodged. The
Observer newspaper run major article with a Comment piece by Nick Cohen.
Press speculate that the entire claim if all blacklisted workers were
involved could reach £600m.
Union News produce DVD with lessons of the Sparks dispute video
Jim Sheridan MP calls for blacklisting firms to be barred from publicly
funded projects as he joins Colin Trousdale, Willie Black and other
blacklisted workers protesting outside Balfour Beatty Engineering Services
HQ in Glasgow against the victimisation of UNITE union activist Stewart
Human Rights campaign group Liberty calls on the Information Commissioner’s
Office to re-open its inquiry into blacklisting.
Howard Shiplee of blacklisting firm Laing O'Rourke is appointed to the
Board of the Health & Safety Executive.
Spanish press pick up blacklisting story.
Drew Smith MSP (Labour) and Christina McKelvie MSP (SNP) raise blacklisting
in Scottish parliament.
Gail Cartmail (UNITE) and Justin Bowden & Harry Donaldson (GMB) give
evidence at Select Committee investigation and stick the boot into Balfour
Beatty and Carillion as examples of continuing blacklisting.
TUC Congress unanimously passes motion calling for a public inquiry and
national Day of Action on blacklisting. GMB, UNITE, TSSA, UCATT speak in
the debate. Blacklist Support Group speaks at TUC fringe meetings alongside
Workers at Grangemouth Oil Refinery in Scotland threaten strike action over
ongoing blacklisting and Stewart Hume is miraculously reinstated by Balfour
Crossrail mass picket barricades site entrance after 28 UNITE members are
dismissed when their electrical firm has its contract cut short 3 years
early in a blatant attempt to blacklist union steward Frank Morris after
reps raised safety concerns. The BFK consortium building Crossrail (largest
construction project in Europe) includes BAM and Kier – both proven
GMB organise blacklist protest at Carillion trade stall at Labour Party
Blacklisting protesters close Tottenham Court Road and Moorgate during rush
hour as part of ongoing Crossrail dispute. Protesters occupy the Office of
Rail Regulator (public body responsible for rail safety) after HSE halt
production on site following major gantry collapse on Crossrail site where
safety reps have been blacklisted.
The Information Commissioner's Office gave evidence at the Select Committee
and admit that they had only seized 5-10% of the documents held by the
Financial Times run major story on blacklisting.
Steve Rotheram MP puts down an Early Day Motion 609 calling for a Leveson
style public inquiry into blacklisting
Richard Howson – Carillion Chief Executive - under pressure, issues a
carefully worded statement to the Select Committee denying any involvement
in blacklist except by a small subsidiary, Crown House which stopped in
2006. Blacklist Support Group and GMB refute the claims.
Steve Murphy (UCATT Gen Sec) & Jim Kennedy (UCATT) give evidence to the
Select Committee, exposing Sir Robert McAlpine and Skanska for blacklisting
on the Olympics stadium and media centre. McAlpine alone were being
invoiced for 65 name checks a day during the mass recruitment stage of the
Christian Khan solicitors working on behalf of the Blacklist Support Group
submit a formal complaint to the IPCC about police collusion with
Blacklisting meeting takes place at STUC in Glasgow.
The release of unredacted documents for the High Court claim identify a
number of union officials as the source of information on the blacklist
files. Blacklisted workers including Brian Higgins and Michael Anderson
demand an investigation.
Alan Wainwright – ex-Carillion director turned whistleblower gives evidence
to the Select Committee and names 12 Directors and senior managers in
Carillion Group personally involved in blacklisting. Sheila Knight
ex-Assistant Director of ACAS is named as blacklisting union members who
worked on the Jubilee Line Extension.
ICO admit returning the Consulting Association seized computer without even
turning it on.
Oxford Street closed by protesters in support of unite steward Frank Morris
blacklisted by Crossrail as part of the November 14 EU wide union day of
Blacklist Support Group short-listed for Human Rights Campaign of the Year
at the Liberty Awards ceremony.
Paul Kenny (GMB Gen Sec) sends letter to every labour Councillor in the UK
asking them to support campaign to bar blacklisting firms from public
contracts. Local Authorities across the country vote to support the
Ian Kerr – chief executive of the Consulting Association and convicted
blacklister gives 4 hours of unrepentant evidence at the Select Committee.
Names dozens of senior executives and admits that major blacklisting took
place on the Olympics and Crossrail project. Sir Robert McAlpine paid his
County Court fine! Agrees to supply a full written statement naming all
those senior managers that attended blacklisting meetings.
Ron Baron, head of industrial relations at Crossrail is sacked following
Ian Kerr evidence and Building Magazine article exposing him as a serial
blacklister having been named in previous Employment Tribunal judgements.
UNITE demand an investigation into blacklisting on Crossrail.
Seamus Milne writes major article in The Guardian calling for a Leveson
style public inquiry.
Shami Chakrabarti compares blacklisting to phone hacking on Andrew Marr TV
Health & Safety Executive issue a statement against blacklisting of safety
reps following request by Paul Kenny.
Ian Kerr – chief executive of the Consulting Association dies.
Crossrail worker suffers 70% burns following explosion – site is closed for
safety reasons. Protesters close down Horseferry Road outside the
Department of Transport demanding action over safety and blacklisting on
Crossrail. Boris Johnson announces plan to investigate safety issues on
Steve Acheson reaches 5th year protesting outside Fiddlers Ferry Power
Station near Warrington following his dismissal from site because of the
The fight for justice continues