The latest news and analysis from SF locals

Cambridge SolFed at Strawberry Fair Saturday 2nd June 2018

Cambridge Solidarity Federation will have a stall in Scarecrow Corner at this year's Strawberry Fair, 12noon onwards Saturday 2nd June, Midsummer Common.

Strawberry Fair is the most popular free, entirely volunteer run, one day music & arts event in Cambridge (and probably across Europe!), attracting over 30,000 visitors throughout the day, running for over 40 years.

In between enjoying the music and the beer tent, call in and see us for some lighthearted anarcho-syndicalist banter.

We should also have info on local grassroots housing campaigns.

Also info on upcoming 2nd Cambridge Radical Bookfair on 17th June at the Portland Arms

Northern Festival of Resisting Borders & Prisons May 19th

In Manchester, Empty Cages Collective, Manchester No Prisons, Smash IPP, & Unis Resist Border Controls felt the urgency of not only discussing and pushing against border regimes and the hostile environment policy, but also fighting prison injustice. As it was reported in Corporate Watch, the current Conservative government are pushing to build 6 mega prisons, one of which has already been built in Wrexham, North Wales. The crisis of violence and overcrowding inside prisons is causing huge damage to communities across the UK.

'We taught them a lesson' - a tenant who successfully fought a deposit deduction tells her story

Below is the write-up of a successful campaign organised by a tenant and Brighton SolFed against a deduction to that tenant's deposit. The three month public campaign concluded in April 2018 with a £450 payment to the tenant, who had had £390 deducted from her deposit. Please note that the article contains brief discussion of post traumatic stress disorder.

Brighton hospitality worker gets paid after a single picket

A Brighton hospitality worker supported by SolFed has won a victory against the exploitative conditions prevalent in the local hospitality sector, as a restaurant paid £1,200 in response to pay demands made by the worker.

The public campaign in support of the worker ended after a single picket - and some back-and-forth emailing - with the worker receiving all the money she had asked for.

The worker's demand of £1200 was in relation to outstanding pay. Unusually, the worker had been told she would be paid a set weekly amount, depending on whether she worked 5 or 6 days. Her contract stipulated that she was employed and paid for 32 hours a week. However, since work days usually lasted around 11 hours, in reality she worked close to double what she had been contracted for.

National Minimum and Living Wage Increases April 2018

The new rates for the National Minimum Wage and the National Living Wage from April 2018 are set out below:

  • £7.83 per hour for ages 25 and over
  • £7.38 per hour for ages 21 to 24
  • £5.90 per hour for ages 18 to 20
  • £4.20 per hour for those under 18
  • £3.70 per hour for apprentices.

For your boss to pay the apprenticeship rate there must be a genuine apprenticeship agreement in place. This agreement must be based on training being the main purpose of the agreement, with working being secondary.

The apprenticeship rate only applies to apprentices aged:

Brighton Solidarity Federation concludes its campaign against G4Lets

Brighton Solidarity Federation has concluded its campaign against the student lettings agency G4Lets. The campaign was in support of two groups of tenants who had just over £3000 deducted from their deposits. One group of tenants had £2000 taken from their deposit for fire safety, redecoration, and pest control, in spite of an Environmental Health Report from the council informing G4Lets that these issues were their responsibility to resolve as part of landlords' general obligations to the properties they let out.

A hunger for unionisation: what's happening in the games industry?

The Game Developers Conference in San Francisco (more commonly known as GDC) is one of the highlights of the game industry calendar. An annual event drawing game developers of all stripes from around the globe, it is seen as one of the premier places for developers to network, companies to show off new tech, CEOs to mingle and business deals to be made. Yet the big discussion animating conference goers at this year's GDC was something very different. Namely the unionisation of the games industry.