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I hope this latest newsletter finds you, your families, and workmates well.

I have detected that in some parts of Yorkshire and the Humber the coronavirus infection numbers have increased in certain areas.

This may be the start of a second wave, so it is absolutely important to make sure you have all the safety procedures in place at work, and that you take care when out and about shopping and socialising.

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News

Minister must urgently clarify where arts funding will go, say Yorkshire’s culture unions in joint call

The TUC issued a joint call with its culture sector trade unions on Monday, calling on Oliver Dowden to urgently set out plans for distribution of the £1.5bn financial rescue package for the arts.

The joint call follows sectoral discussions between unions and the tourism body Welcome to Yorkshire about the future of the industry and the imminent danger of closing for many smaller cultural organisations.

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TUC backs NIESR call for furlough extension

The TUC has backed the call made on Tuesday by the National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR) for furlough to be extended to prevent a surge in unemployment to 10%.

NIESR describe the current plans for furlough to end in October as ‘premature’ and a ‘mistake’. 

TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said:  

"Lots of firms have a viable future but need a longer bridge to get them there. We can't just let them go to the wall. The damage would ripple across the whole economy with jobs falling like dominoes.  

"The Chancellor must accept the reality faced by hard hit sectors like retail, manufacturing and aviation. The job retention scheme should be extended beyond October for firms that need it most." 

Roundup of our press coverage this week

We continue to work with the local press to get information, news and reports out to as many people as possible.

This week we have had two pieces in the Yorkshire Post; a Wakefield Express piece; a BBC Leeds report on buses; and two BBC Look North reports on culture! 👍👍

Events

Leeds patrol: organising workers during covid | online event | Wednesday 5 August | 6pm - 7pm

Join us for an online organising meeting about the movement of precarious workers we're building in the city, and how we're going to fight for change 💪💪

Register Here!

Campaigns

West Yorkshire council leaders vote to take public control of our buses

🚨🚨We won!!🚨🚨

After hundreds of emails, West Yorkshire Council Leaders have voted to take public control of buses to the next stage.

Sign our petition NOW & take our buses back! 💪💪

Reports

The government is ignoring the childcare crisis and its costing women their jobs

The social and economic impacts of the pandemic have disproportionately affected women, especially when it comes to childcare.

Mums have picked up the majority of childcare while nurseries and schools have been closed – and many have had to sacrifice work hours and pay to do so. When the furlough schemes ends in October, the crisis in the childcare sector will continue. What will working mums do?

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Government support is being stripped away when it’s needed more than ever

An overhaul of our social security system, not more temporary government measures, is what we need to create a real safety net.

Before the pandemic hit, households were already struggling. Household debt had hit a record high, individual insolvencies were increasing, and debt advice charities such as StepChange were seeing record-high use, as were food banks.

Read More...

Learning

TUC Education

We have a number of e-notes, on health, safety and wellbeing; equalities; building unions; union learning; and employment law and rights at work, which can all be found on the TUC Education website

There are also webinars on a variety of subjects, like Coronavirus: your rights at work; Q&A with the HSE; and international solidarity during the pandemic. These and all our webinars can be accessed through the TUC Education Youtube channel

Announcements

Maternity Action Covid FAQs available in 6 languages

From the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, Maternity Action (MA) have experienced exceptional demand for their Maternity Rights advice line, so they have put together some online frequently asked questions on rights at work and benefits during pregnancy and maternity leave during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

In partnership with Europia and the Latin American Women’s Rights Service, Maternity Action have translated the Covid-19 FAQ’s into:

By making the information accessible in other languages, MA hope this will help even more women deal with some of the issues arising from the pandemic. Please share this information around your networks and to anyone who may be able to share it directly with women affected. 

It’s important to note that the situation continues to change and MA will be adding updated information regularly,

Sheffield Needs a Pay Rise - union organiser funding appeal

On Saturday Sheffield Needs a Pay Rise union organiser, Rohan Kon organised one of their biggest protests yet, when 100 workers and trade unionists stood outside Papa John's pizza outlet on Eccleshall Road to demand the boss pays back the wages he stole from his workers. Some were owed up to £2000! Within half an hour the boss agreed to pay up and meet the union. A tremendous victory which will resonate right across the Sheffield low paid fast food workforce - and show the power of the union!
 
Sheffield union organiser Rohan Kon has made a dramatic difference, says Sheffield TUC, linking up many young exploited workers, revitalising their Sheffield Needs a Pay Rise Campaign, developing and training young workers and activists as 'canvassers', and recruiting new union members!
 
And they need your help to keep Rohan employed by them. Read their funding appeal here and find out how you can help 😊

Artists’ Union England creates a Solidarity Fund to aid members in hardship caused by the Covid-19 crisis online from July 2020

AUE have produced a press release saying under the current Government Self Employment Scheme (SEISS), many people have missed out on receiving any kind of support. Self-employed artists have fallen through the gaps in the system because they supplement their work in the arts with PAYE jobs.

You can read the full press release and find out how you can donate to the solidarity fund here

The Greener Jobs Alliance

The Greener Jobs Alliance (GJA) was formed as a partnership body inclusive of trade unions, student organisations, campaigning groups and a policy think tank. It campaigns around the issue of jobs and the skills needed to transition to a low-carbon economy. The founding members of the GJA are the University and College Union, Trades Union Congress, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, National Union of Students, People & Planet, and the Institute of Public Policy Research.

GJA have been producing monthly newsletters on a range of topics, like "Covid-19 - lessons for the climate crisis"; "Building a UK climate movement"; and "a stronger, fairer, greener country". And in this month's newsletter they examine the detail of the Government's claims to be supporting a Green Recovery and provide updates on a range of union / workplace climate initiatives.
 
You can read a copy of the newsletter here. And as always they welcome any comments / ideas for future newsletters too.

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