There Is Power In The Union

Miners’ Leader Chris Kitchen Photo thanks to Chris Bevan former Askern Miner www.chrisbevanphotography.co.uk

Responding to issues raised by A. Matthewson, H. Parfitt, M. Thomson and S. Jones relating to the status of the National Union of Mineworkers the Certification Officer (CO) has declared that she is satisfied that the NUM and most NUM areas continue to meet the statutory definition of a trade union.
The CO has taken the preliminary view that NUM (North East) Area and NUM (Scotland) Area no longer fall within that definition and accordingly it is likely that these areas will be removed from the schedule of trade unions.
Commenting on the outcome of this enquiry Chris Kitchen, NUM National Secretary said “This is yet another failed attempt by a number of former members to undermine the integrity of the NUM and prevent the Union from continuing with the valuable services that we offer to current and former members. The Union accepts the outcome, but we are disappointed that once again we have been forced to spend time and our members money defending unwarranted complaints”
Regarding the position of Scotland and North East Areas he said “It is a pity that due to the actions of certain individuals these areas will no longer be recognised as independent trade unions. However, Scotland and the North East will continue as administrative areas of the National Union of Mineworkers and I want to assure all members and former members in those areas that this union will continue to represent them and their families as we have always done”.

NUM GAIN JUSTICE FOR MINERS DAUGHTER

The NUM is pleased to report that it has been able to assist a severely disabled young woman and her family establish entitlement to mobility payments from the Department for Work and Pensions.
Hayley suffered catastrophic injuries as a child when she was severely injured in a road traffic accident. Throughout her life she has been cared for by her family who relied on benefits they received from DWP. However, when they could no longer care for Hayley full time she was admitted to a care home and the Department stopped her mobility payments.
Hayley’s father, an ex-miner and NUM member contacted the Union for assistance. He told us that Hayley relied on a specially adapted vehicle which he used to collect her and bring her to and from the home at weekends and for holidays so that Hayley could visit her family and friends. However he had to cancel an order for a replacement vehicle when the benefits were stopped.
The NUM legal officer took up the case and was concerned to find that the family had been told that they did not even have a right of appeal against the decision. The Union insisted that an appeal should proceed and eventually was able to obtain the necessary evidence to overturn the decision.
Hayley’s benefit has been reinstated and backdated so that the family can now afford the new vehicle and Hayley is once more able to enjoy the company of her friends and relatives. Hayley’s father thanked the NUM and said, “I don’t know how you did it but I would not have been able to get this result without the Union’s help”.
Harry Eyre, NUM Legal Officer said” This was an appalling situation which should never have arisen. I am very pleased that the Union has been able to help the family in these circumstances”.

NUM WELCOME DECISION IN SCOTTISH PARLIAMENT

The NUM welcome the Ministerial Statement in the Scottish Parliament on the Impact of Policing on Communities during the Miners’ Strike. The statement by the Cabinet Secretary for Justice Michael Matheson announced that a robust, proportionate and fair independent review to be lead by John Scott QC. The statement can be read by clicking the flag.

General Data Protection Regulations

The General data Protection Regulations came into force on 25 May 2018. These regulations are designed to complement the provisions of the Data Protection Act 1998 and enhance the rights of individuals to privacy where their personal information is processed. The regulations apply to all organisations including the NUM and the Union has updated its policies and procedures to implement the changes and ensure that we deal with your personal data in accordance with the legislation. In particular the Union has revised its privacy notice to explain its responsibilities to you and also the type of personal information collected, how it is used and how it is protected.

The NUM privacy notice can be viewed here:

GDPR Privacy Notice

 

NUM Welcome MPS Meeting

Click Box For Details

NUM Yorkshire Area were pleased to hear a presentation (click box for details) from the MPS on Sunday 13 May 2018 at the Yorkshire Miners Holiday Home at Scalby in North Yorkshire. Yorkshire NUM Secretary Chris Kitchen said that after many years of the NUM and others raising the issue of the MPS surplus it was welcome to hear that the MPS Trustees would welcome a change in surplus sharing arrangements but did not want to weaken the Guarantee. The issue of a fair surplus sharing will be highlighted in London where Les Moore and the UK MINEWORKERS PENSION CAMPAIGN have arranged a rally on Wednesday 6th June 2018, meet at the OLD PALACE YARD 12.30 – 13.00 PM (Dennis Skinner Speaking) 13.30pm filter through House of Commons Security to COMMITTEE ROOM 14 for 2pm.

Poison

One the one side the Conservatives having expelled Russians for (according to the government) poisoning people in Salisbury and bombing Syria for (according to the government) poisoning its own people are aided and abetted by the media machine that poisons anyone that doesn’t serve the interests of those who ‘own and control’, had to mount a ‘Herculean effort’, to deliver candidates for 4,400 of the 4,413 wards and they managed to get 1,332 elected.

On the other side is Labour whose parliamentary party are not exactly united behind its leader and it goes without saying that without a ‘Blair like leader’ the media machine will do all it can to oppose Corbyn, yet Labour managed to get 2,350 candidates elected.

The antidote to the poison is of course the truth. Now there are lots of things you can do with numbers so let’s put it simple Labour won more than the Conservatives. Spin it how you like but that is what happened.

 

The Test of Time

34 years ago Jeremy Corbyn showed his support for Miners’ fighting to save jobs unlike the leader of the Labour Party at that time. In the forthcoming elections who will you be supporting?

 

HOLLYWOOD AWARD

Pictured is Andy Lawrence’s award which is currently on display at the NUM Offices.

CONGRATULATIONS

With over 20 awards from all over the world the short film made by Steve Linstead and Andy Lawrence ‘Black Snow’ received 2 awards presented in Hollywood by Dani Jae at the world-famous Raleigh Studios.

 

The film was produced in conjunction with heritage work around the Oaks Colliery Disaster of 1866.

Much of the film was shot in the NUM Offices in Barnsley and the NUM actively helped and supported the work.

The Award ceremony was in March with the red carpet rolled out. The film was shown along with other films from around the world and was well received by the audience.

Steve Linstead receives his award from Dani Jae.

 

Closure Support In Poland

Why did UK Government say that they could not do anything for our coal industry? Poland have shown what could be done.

European Commission – Daily News

Daily News 08 / 02 / 2018 http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_MEX-18-701_en.htm

State aid: Commission approves PLN 5 billion Polish support for closing coal mines

The European Commission has found amendments to Poland’s plans to provide public support of PLN 5 billion (approximately €1.25 billion) to alleviate the social and environmental impact of closing uncompetitive coal mines by 2018 to be in line with EU State aid rules. The Commission concluded that potential competition distortions are limitedas a result of the support. The Commission had already approved Polish support for the closure of uncompetitive coal mines in November 2016. In line with EU State aid rules, and in particular Council Decision 2010/787/EU on State aid to facilitate the closure of uncompetitive coal mines, the Commission found that the aid will ease the closure process by providing financial support to workers who have lost, or will lose, their jobs due to the closure of the mines. In particular, the state support will fund severance payments, compensatory pensions and social security benefits for these workers until 2023. Furthermore, it will be used to secure mine shafts and decommissioning of mine infrastructure, repair damage to the environment caused by mining and re-cultivate land after the mine closures. More information will be available on the Commission’s competition website, in the State Aid Register under the case number SA.46891. (For more information: Ricardo Cardoso – Tel.: +32 229 80100; Maria Sarantopoulou – Tel.: +32 229 13740)

What goes on in Poland on the 17th of April. https://biznesalert.com/polish-briefing-poland-will-not-switch-to-gas-there-will-be-coal-and-atom/

Naimski: Poland will not switch to gas. There will be coal and atom

The plenipotentiary for strategic energy infrastructure has announced that coal will maintain a prominent position in the energy strategy of the Republic of Poland, which the government is now announcing at the end of 2018.

– Whatever what are the climatic, technological and other arguments, this fact is inalienable. It just is. Yes, we have natural gas and it’s good that we have more of it. Nevertheless, it does not seem after the first failure when it comes to Polish shale gas, so that we can rely our energy on our own gas. Why should we base our security on imports if we can base them on our own resources? – the conference participant asked.

– This determines our strategy in the field of energy policy. With all the practical aspects of access to gas, we will not base the Polish power industry on gas. That would be irrational. In Poland, we have a fairly low share of gas in primary energy. You can increase it, but there is no reason to do it – Piotr Naimski argued.

– Energy-based gas blocks are needed that will be regulatory in nature – he admitted. – When we diversify deliveries, we will be able to choose the raw materials on which we will base our energy and we will probably build one, two, maybe three gas blocks. Then it will only be a rational action.

– We will try to keep the energy produced from coal in accordance with technological requirements, but also climate policy, and at the same time we will want the coal to remain. In the strategy we are developing, coal has its place – the minister said. In his opinion, it is possible to forecast 30 years ahead, ie until the fifth decade of this century. – Our calculations show that almost half of the energy will be produced from coal – he added.

BOOM BOOM OUT GO THE LIGHTS

The headlines almost 12 months ago were “Britain goes without coal for the first time ‘since Industrial Revolution'”.
12 months on and when the cold started to bite, can anyone tell us the last day that if coal was not burned to generate electricity the lights would not have gone out?
Total coal imports in the third quarter of 2017 were 1.9 million tonnes, 9.9 per cent higher than in the same period in 2016.
Imports of steam coal fell 5.4 per cent in the third quarter of 2017 compared to a year earlier. Russia was the highest supplier of steam coal imports with 50 per cent. The second highest supplier was the USA with 27 per cent, followed by Colombia with 8 per cent.
Coking coal imports rose by 42 per cent to 0.8 million tonnes in the third quarter of 2017 compared to the third quarter of 2016. The USA (33 per cent), Australia (32 per cent) and Russia (30 per cent) represented 95 per cent of coking coal imports.

 

And All That Gas

The government says less than 1 percent of UK supplies come from Russia, but critics point out this still exposes consumers when supplies are tight, and Britain must bid with the rest of Europe (who rely on a third of its gas from Russia) for piped gas and with the rest of the world for LNG. It is probably fair to say that without gas from Russia the UK would have experienced power cuts this month and certainly without Russian coal the lights would have gone out.
The case for an indigenous coal industry with Carbon Capture Usage and Storage as a strategic requirement for the UK is plain to see.
How many more risks do the UK take before ‘Boom Out Go The Lights’.