When management at the University of Sussex announced plans to outsource 235 jobs, workers responded by launching a 'Pop-Up Union', a new tactic in modern British industrial relations. Is this a model other workers can emulate? Solfed members involved in the Pop Up Union analyse what happened.
A SolFed member who has worked as an electrician since the late 1970s shares his experience of the electric supply industry, privatisation and trade unions.
I started an apprenticeship at 16 from school in the local electric company. It was then a nationalised industry and everyone was in one of the recognised (by the company) trade unions (a closed shop). There were many different departments and staff could move between them as workload dictated. As an apprentice I spent time in each department to give me experience of each and to hopefully decide in which one I would ultimately stay.