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Welcome November 27, 2011

Posted by eddiefitz in About us, Carphone Warehouse, Getting involved, Irlam, Kelvin Close, News, Preston, Rights, TalkTalk, TTT, Warrington, Wednesbury.
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The Reps and fellow members of the CWU would like to offer a warm welcome to all those who have joined us in the last few months.

If you haven’t received your membership card yet you soon will. If you have any questions please contact and we will do our best to help you.

If you haven’t already, check out SOME of the many BENEFITS of your union membership here; http://www.cwu.org/benefits.html and

http://www.cwu.one1one.co.uk/  and http://www.cwu.one1one.co.uk/specialoffers.cfm




Together we can make a REAL difference

Any organisation needs honest feedback on how it is doing and we, the administrators of the ‘Workers site welcome your thoughts, ideas and feedback on what we can do to help you gain information and improve the service the CWU provides.

The union movement is all about involvment and input. If you want to get involved either as a rep or as a point of contact please contact us. Remember all correspondence to this site is confidential.

Taking any active role in the movement will increase your knowledge and your awareness of  the issues we all face in employment and society in general.

Becoming a union member helps us all to achieve…….

Respect and Dignity in the Workplace

 “Where trade unions are most firmly organized, there are the rights of the people most respected. “

Samuel Gompers

CWU main site www.cwu.org/home/

Support the posties! October 21, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us.
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From tomorrow, Royal Mail workers – members of the CWU, our union – will be staging 24 hour strikes across the country.  From midnight on Thursday, Mail Centres (larger distribution and sorting offices) will be out, while from early Friday morning there will be picket lines at your local delivery offices.


Some newspapers, such as the Sun, have been delivering virulent anti-worker propaganda.

The reality is, the posties are fighting for tens of thousands of working class jobs.  They are fighting for them to continue to be the sort of job that can support a family; not a casualised workforce, paid a little over £7 an hour, like postal workers in Germany, or a part time one, like in Holland.

Of course, it can be frustrating when that package or letter you’re waiting for doesn’t arrive.  But some posties – including those in London, who’ve been striking for one day a week for more than 15 weeks – have lost more than £1,000 in wages already.  Postal workers do not do this lightly.  They do it in defense of a postal service run on the basis of the public interest, and solid working class jobs.   To find out what post workers are saying about their strike, click these two links:

If you can, before work on Friday, considering stopping by your local delivery office (where you pick up parcels from if they can’t be delivered), and talk with your local posties – and hopefully fellow union members  – about why they’re taking the action they are.  Give them your support.  Viva la posties!

Interview with Graham Armstrong, CWU rep at Opal in Stanford House October 9, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Getting involved, Opal, Warrington.
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Graham and Frank Lang, fellow CWU rep at Opal, have recently been spreading the word to fellow TalkTalk group workers at the nearby Kelvin Close site, also in Warrington.  If you work for TalkTalk in the North West and want to speak to Graham, you can contact him on 07828 673847 or cwugraham@rocketmail.com

Why did you decide to become a rep?

The reason for me becoming a Rep at Opal was after a good hard working person was given a Final Written warning for an offence that should have been thrown out.  Weeks later she left the company.  There are people who don’t know how to speak up.   They just need good independent advice so they can make empowered decisions to defend themselves.

Shall I compare thee to a… headset? September 5, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us.
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Poetry about call centres?  Surely not?!  Carphone Worker was surprised to come across the below, written as a farewell letter by a call centre-worker working for a company called Blu in Florence, Italy:

regards to the virtual and direct controls,
to the controllers and the monitoring;
regards to the corporate language…
regards to the call times, the welcome phrases, the scripts;
to the bureaucracy and the procedures;
regards to the partition walls, the air-conditioning, the workplaces;
to the revolving doors, the badge, the barriers;
regards to impersonality, standardisation, the bluish grey;
regards to the mission (!) and to the values (uh!);
informal regards to the informal atmosphere,
which connects those who have difficulties paying the rent
with those who earn thousands every month…
regards to the false promises and to those who made them…
angry regards to those who preached peace, the leaden feet, obedience;
regards to the indispensable firemen, regards to the unionists…
regards, without envy, to all the bootlickers on every level;
kind regards to all those who kept their dignity…
warm regards to all the friends I found and who found me…


Send your own call-centre (or Carphone) related poem to Carphone Worker and we will publish it (anonymously, unless you ask otherwise). Best effort wins one month’s free membership!  Haikus and limericks accepted.

Slightly freaky, but kind of cool anyway… August 12, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Videos.
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The TUC (the alliance of all the unions in the UK) is running a contest for 60 second adverts about unions…

… by the way, you don’t have to visit the link at the end of the video, because the union for you is… that’s right, the CWU. Click ‘about the union’ above, to join.

“Are we allowed to join a union?” August 7, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Getting involved.
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I’m sometimes shocked to hear statements like this from Carphone and TalkTalk workers:

When I joined four years ago in our induction we were told that people who had called the union before, and they had been marched off the premises, and the same thing would happen to us if we tried to get the union involved.

Just to make it absolutely clear:

  • Stories like this – and including this – are rumours, not facts.
  • You have a legal right to be a member of a union
  • You have a legal right to be active on behalf of your union (e.g. encourage others to join) during your own time (e.g. lunch and break times, after and before work)
  • Union members have a right to be represented in a discipline or grievance meeting (and some other meetings) by a union representative

That’s all folks!

What have the unions ever done for us? August 3, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Videos.
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So, this video is from a campaign run by Australian unions (so some of the stuff it talks about is kind of specific to Australia), and includes some strong language at the end, but the point rings true for us as well…

.. from the unions. The people who brought you the weekend.

just another cog in the machine…. July 10, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Videos.
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Union reps: good for you, good for the company? May 19, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Getting involved.
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Apparently, yes! A joint statement setting out the positive contribution that modern union reps can make to the workplace has been launched by the TUC, the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) and the CBI.  (The Confederation of British Industry is the organisation of major businesses in Britain.)

Reps in Action shows how modern union representatives and company managers have worked together to deal with situations that can occur in any workplace and as a result have, for example, improved working practices, enhanced workplace training provision or lead to greener workplaces.

According to research conducted by BERR in 2007, union reps are worth between £3.4 billion and £10.2 billion to the UK economy, on the basis that their presence in a workplace brings about a combination of productivity gains, reduced staff turnover, less time off as a result of sickness, improved health and safety and better training for staff.

TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: ‘This joint publication reveals the positive contribution that union reps can make in the workplace. In these tough times Britain’s businesses need as much support as possible. Union reps can be a vital resource not only for unions and their members, but also for the companies and organisations that employ them.

More info: www.tuc.org.uk/extras/repsinaction.pdf

CWU is always looking for more reps in Carphone and TalkTalk.  Get in touch if it could be you.

New CWU rep at Stanford House, Warrington May 14, 2009

Posted by tomcwu in About us, Disciplinaries, Stanford House, TalkTalk.
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Graham3Meet Graham Armstrong, the new Communication Workers Union rep at Stanford House, Warrington.  Graham works for Opal, and has been trained and accredited by the union to support members through the discipline and grievance procedures.

You can contact Graham on cwugraham@rocketmail.com or 07828 673847

Graham says, “As a CWU rep, it’s important for me to develop a good relationship with management because we all want to see a working environment where everyone feels content and supported at all stages.”

If you are going to see Graham in work, please try to make it during a break.  If you need to get in touch out of work using the above details, that’s fine.  If you’re having trouble getting in touch with Graham, you can contact the Liverpool Clerical CWU branch – you can find their details on the ‘contact us’ page of this site.

The CWU is working to build up a network of reps throughout Carphone and TalkTalk – so that wherever members are, there is someone they can go to for advice on site.  Our reps, including Graham, will always treat anything you say with the strictest confidence.

If you, or someone you know, would be willing to take on the role of CWU rep – making sure colleagues get a fair outcome in discipline procedures, and acting as a contact point for those interested in the union – get in touch.