Marxist. Trade Unionist. Socialist-feminist. Author. Poet. Speaker. Tutor. RMT ex-Exec. Workers' Liberty. Autie. Bi. PUFC fan.

London

Stuff about the city where I (used to) live and (still) work!

The Queue

Submitted by Janine on 15 September 2022 at 10:18

A fortnight back, complaining about
having to wait behind two others
to use the cashpoint

Now, happy to stand all day and night
to file past a box
with a crown and a cushion on top

and inside, the body of
someone you never knew -
it's the nearest you could ever get to her

It's the ultimate display of Britishness:
an awesome combo of
queueing and deference

Poplar: the Borough that Fought Back and Won

Submitted by Janine on 15 March 2022 at 13:15

… and why it matters today

By Janine Booth, published in RMT News.

The two biggest employers in the east London borough of Poplar one hundred years were the railways and the docks. Our forerunner unions had plenty of members there. Their jobs involved long hours and low pay, but they were unionised, so they were fighting for, and winning, improvements.

Women Working Shifts

Submitted by Janine on 13 March 2022 at 19:23

At this year's TUC Women's Conference, one of the motions we debated was about working shifts, particularly women's safety on late shifts. This was my contribution to the debate.

You can watch the video of this speech here.

I'm Janine Booth, RMT, and I've worked on London Underground for over 25 years.

The 1921 Poplar Rates Rebellion: lessons for today

Submitted by Janine on 24 May 2021 at 19:55

One hundred years ago, a big movement grew in the east London borough of Poplar, headed by thirty councillors who went to prison rather than levy extortionate rates or cut services to the working-class population that elected them. ‘Poplarism’ won.

Is this just a dusty-but-interesting episode from history? Or does it contain inspiration and lessons for today?

Poplar's rates victory: Ten key points

Submitted by Janine on 03 May 2021 at 09:21

One hundred years ago, a big movement grew in the east London borough of Poplar, headed by thirty councillors who went to prison rather than levy extortionate rates or cut services to the working-class population that elected them. ‘Poplarism’ won.

Why did Poplar win? Here are ten key points, which contain lessons for today.