Traffic wardens sacked over wildcat strike

traffic warden

Almost 30 traffic wardens in Belfast were sacked today after taking unofficial strike action earlier this month.

The wardens had taken the wildcat action at the start of April over pay and conditions, including their rotas and sick-pay. The wardens were initially suspended by bosses, but today were sacked. Those involved make up one-third of Belfast's traffic wardens.

According to the employer, NCP, until new staff are recruited, existing staff will cover the shifts. NCP are contracted to enforce parking restriction across Northern Ireland, and have said they "have a very good relationship with Trades Unions in Northern Ireland and will continue to work with unions representing their members - but we cannot support illegal action of this kind".

The company also said the unofficial strike action disrupted the delivery of a 'public service'. The sacked workers join the increasing numbers of unemployed across the UK.

Comments

JoeMaguire
Apr 20 2009 20:26

Couldn't they just have a good will strike and refuse to give out tickets?

Choccy
Apr 20 2009 20:44

Who?
The remaining employees?
Or the initial strike?

PartyBucket
Apr 20 2009 20:49

Im not sure they have any other duties than giving out tickets, so thats what happened in effect I guess.

Choccy
Apr 20 2009 20:53

Oh yeah good point.
Yeah what other duties would they do? wink

PartyBucket
Apr 20 2009 20:57

Well, I suppose they liaise with cops on some things, they also patrol and sometimes just move cars along instead of ticketing them if theyre parked where they shouldnt but theres someone in them. Maybe they refused to go out on their 'beats' as well??

Choccy
Apr 20 2009 21:07

Well I would have imagine they didn't go out at all on the strike day.

Steven.
Apr 20 2009 23:30

Shit that's heavy stuff! Have they just gone without a fuss?

Choccy
Apr 21 2009 00:05

No sign of any action being taken by those sacked, nor solidarity actions by other workers.

Sheldon
Apr 21 2009 00:53

That's sad news, I imagine that they must have been terminated "with cause" so there's no sort of compensation for them. Was it only a third of the total traffic wardens involved in the wildcat strike, or were those third fired as an example to the rest?

Choccy
Apr 21 2009 11:28

The ones fired were the only ones involved in the wildcat strike, and had been suspended initially.

PartyBucket
Apr 21 2009 13:34

It seems not all of those who walked out were even in favour of the wildcat, but went along with the majority vote. NIPSA, their union, has vowed to do "everything in its power" to overturn the sackings, whatever that means.
Im not sure if the 26 sacked were all on one shift, but clearly the remaining workers are not taking any action in support of them.

Kaze no Kae
Apr 21 2009 23:56
Quote:
Couldn't they just have a good will strike and refuse to give out tickets?

Mmm Ive often suggested a similar tactic by other workers, such as transport workers refusing to collect fares or retail workers refusing to collect the price on anything essential (although the latter would obviously have to be in large enough numbers that it would be unprosecutable, because they'd call it complicity in theft)

Steven.
May 20 2009 19:25

Forum discussion about this story, including comments from one of the workers here:
http://libcom.org/forums/news/traffic-attendant-wildcat-strike-belfast-20052009

Riot_Queer
Jun 29 2009 01:42

I guess because they are workers I should be having some feelings of solidarity towards them...however, the "traffick wardens" in Melbourne are a bunch of arseholes with quotas of tickets to hand out. I hold a parking permit and I'm currently disputing several $57 fines for parking within my Permit bounds.

I generally see them as fucking scum who are the proifteering henchmen for the councils who employ them!

Joseph Kay
Jun 29 2009 07:57

if they have quotas to meet, it's hardly the traffic wardens that are profiteering scum so much as their employers

PartyBucket
Jun 29 2009 13:03

Riot_Queer if by 'profiteering' youre meaning that they get some kind of commision or bonus based on the tickets they hand out, that isnt the case for the ones here in Belfast. And whether you 'like' Traffic Wardens or not (and I dont, particularly, Ive had more unfair tickets than I can remember) is a moot point. The point here is that they were sacked for standing up for themselves, with the employer using anti-union legislation. If it can happen to them unopposed, it can happen to people in a 'likeable' job tomorrow.