There are two strategic organising campaigns within the Manufacturing Division, one in the Red Meat Industry and the other in the Mushroom Industry. The Division also organises workers within the sectors through density building and organising of individuals sections where possible. The Divisional Staff work closely with the Strategic Organising Department at every level to ensure close cooperation. The industrial organisers from the Division meets regularly with the Organisers from the Organising Department and both groups are headed up by Sector Organisers and whose responsibility is to coordinate joint activity on the campaign.
The Division have commenced a “relationship building process” with the worksite leaders engaging in National Leaders meetings. Divisional teams – further structures were developed regarding the roles of committees. Committee per site co-ordinate and communicate collective actions as well as engage in density building. The Committees also participate in the National Committee (which the division also participate in.) Due to joint industrial agenda, the Divisional and Department Organisers have to adopt a “hand in glove” approach to the co-ordination of site activities.
Organising Campaign in GE Healthcare Cork
In 2009 workers in GE Healthcare Cork joined SIPTU. GE Management ignored SIPTU’s correspondence and proceeded down a path of demonising the union and threatened workers calling them cowards at general meetings.
The Union was forced to proceed to a Conciliation hearing in February 2010 where we put to the Chairman that the GE policy respected trade unions and also accepted the ILO Declaration. The response by GE management was that they are aware of the GE Policy but management in Cork had their own policy and this was to not recognise the Union.
The Union was then forced to go to a full hearing of the Labour Court which was held on 10th November 2010. GE healthcare turned up at the Labour Court hearing and through their representative consultant made a comprehensive submission. SIPTU won a major victory when the Labour Court recommended that GE recognise the Union.
For further information on the strategic organising campaigns contact:
Joe Cunningham, Head of Strategic Organising Department
Strategic Organising Dept. contact:
Joe Cunningham, Head of Strategic Organising,