6 Apr 2010

Defend Abdul Omer, defend the union

Bosses at Sovereign Bus Company have sacked Abdul Omer, the Unite convenor for their two garages in Harrow and Edgware. It is a clear attempt to break union organisation. Everybody knows that drivers at Sovereign had the worst pay and conditions in London. That has changed, and the bosses hate it. 
Management have accused Omer of intimidating a witness during a disciplinary hearing. None of the witnesses have made a complaint. His real crime is robustly defending a worker against a charge. Action in defence of Omer can get results. Sovereign is a bully. Like all bullies they will back down when faced with a strong response rather than running away from them.
The Unite branch at Harrow passed a motion calling on the union to hold a ballot for action to reinstate Omer. It was also signed by all the reps at both Sovereign garages. Omer’s record strengthened union organisation at Sovereign’s two garages, backed up by strikes and has resulted in serious gains for drivers.
Sovereign bosses know Omer has support. That’s why they have rushed to have extra managers working over the Easter weekend to stop and halt any walkouts. Our reps must be free to effectively defend members at disciplinary hearings without facing management threats to suspend or sack them.
If Sovereign can get away with sacking the union convenor it will encourage other companies to attempt to weaken union organisation elsewhere. Every garage should call on the union to act on the Harrow Unite branch demand for an official ballot.
Send messages of support to defendabdulomer@yahoo.co.uk
You can also download the leaflet on our "leaflets" page.

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