Count Me In campaign National Day of Action announced for October 1

Telecoms & Financial Services, BT

Thursday 24th September 2020

BT has been served notice that the anger of its workforce will be on full public view next week as the union steps up its Count Me In campaign of resistance against multiple attacks on employees in different lines of business.

Exactly a week today, on Thursday October 1, the CWU will be holding its first Count Me In National Day of Action – signalling a significant ramping up of the union’s fightback against a belligerent new management approach that is sweeping across the whole of BT Group but manifesting itself in different ways.

Plans for the high-profile campaign day – in which the CWU will be aiming to involve the union’s entire BT membership via a host of activities organised by branches and regional campaign hubs – were revealed during a special Facebook Live broadcast on Tuesday evening which was viewed live by nearly 8,500 across the union’s social media channels.

As of this morning that figure had exceeded 18,100, with viewers being updated on a multi-faceted fightback, the need for which had previously been forcefully explained by  deputy general secretary Andy Kerr in a special video address that was texted to the union’s entire BT Group membership last Friday. (See video and story here)

With new attacks on job security, terms and conditions, grading and career progression now erupting on a seemingly daily basis, Andy lashed out at a “challenging employer that has become more ruthless than we’ve ever seen” – even as loyal staff strive tirelessly to keep the  country connected during an unprecedented and ongoing national health emergency.

“We already know of the compulsory redundancies in Enterprise and Technology from a highly profitable company at a time when the country faces the biggest threat to job losses it’s ever had,” observed Andy, “and we know there are potentially more job losses to come, as BT pushes towards its ‘Better Workplace Programme’ with the intention of moving to just 30 locations.

                                        Andy Kerr

“On top of that BT are downgrading your hard-won pay terms and conditions in all lines of business.  This is a cynical act, which does nothing but line the pockets of an already highly profitable company. Sadly they no longer want to be the market leader for pay, terms and conditions, but prefer to be part of a race to the bottom, aligning themselves with the lowest payers in the industry.”

In yesterday’s Facebook Live session Andy stressed it is now more important than ever for members across BT Group to make their anger plain to the company – pointing out that October 1 will provide the perfect opportunity to demonstrate to BT’s top brass just how united the workforce is in its disgust at the company’s current trajectory.

“I want to make it clear that this National Day of Action will not be a one-off,” he insisted. “We’ll do more, much more, in the coming weeks, and we will show this company that we are united as a union and that they need to listen to what we are saying.

“We’ll also be becoming more public in our campaigning, getting more media coverage and building the campaign nationally with politicians and in any other way we can to ensure our members’ views are heard by the company.

Andy continued: “I’ve made it clear from day one that if the company don’t start to listen we will push the button and we will have a ballot, and that ballot will be for industrial action. I’ll do my utmost to avoid us getting to that stage if we possibly can, because I still believe negotiation is the best way to go for everyone concerned – but the threat is there and I make no bones about it.

“If the company continue to ignore us we WILL push the button.”

  • Watch out for information from your branch about national Count Me In day of activities taking place in your locality