Thread Rating:
  • 0 Vote(s) - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
Prospect
#1
Ive been working for a few years now, and while I am no more secure and stable in employment than I have ever been, things are ticking along nicely and I for one seem to keep picking up work.

I have worked on a couple of diabolically organised excavations (with one big company in particular!) and now I am older and wiser can't believe I stuck with that particular one for as long as I did.

This got me thinking about Prospect. I realise many people are divided on the issue, but I was wondering opinions on whether membership actually benefits archaeologists such as myself, working from contract to contract or flitting between employment and self-employed status? Money in archaeology is always tight, but will membership actually benefit me, or just suck more pennies from my pocket?

Cheers.
Reply
#2
I can of course only speak for my experiences. I put in a lot of work for IPMS then Prospect getting staff to join and then getting recognition. When I subsequently needed some legal advice the union utterly failed me. I left the union soon after. I now put the subs money into my savings account.
Reply
#3
Karl Marx suggested that Trade Unions 'are the means of uniting the working class, of preparing for the overthrow of the entire old society with its class contradictions.....the workers are right to laugh at the clever bourgeois schoolmasters who reckon up to them what this ... war is costing them in fallen, injured, and financial sacrifices'

I happen to agree with that statement and have been a member of a trade union since 1977. And I think always will be......its not financial but philosophical.

Reply
#4
Quote:quote:Originally posted by kevin wooldridge

Karl Marx suggested that Trade Unions 'are the means of uniting the working class, of preparing for the overthrow of the entire old society with its class contradictions.....the workers are right to laugh at the clever bourgeois schoolmasters who reckon up to them what this ... war is costing them in fallen, injured, and financial sacrifices'

I happen to agree with that statement and have been a member of a trade union since 1977. And I think always will be......its not financial but philosophical.

I agree with Kevin and unfortunately have similar experiences with Prospect as mercenary. Prospect isn't the best or most dynamic of unions but they are the best that field archaeologists have to fall back on, (at the moment). For local government workers I would strongly urge them to join UNISON.

[Image: OzinLondon.jpg]
Reply
#5
Oz, You've hit the nail on the head there. Which union does your current employer recognise? For understanding of our work conditions I'd go for prospect every time, but if you tend toward local authority jobs Unison is the better choice. You could join both, but that's a big whack and the results when asking for help can be pretty disappointing Sad

A few years back I was at a local authority who were going through growing pains (it all turned out well) and a meeting was called to discuss various issues. Of course the Unison man from the local chapter had to be present. Forty minutes late a pony-tailed, leather-jacketed man arrived to grumbles (we wanted to get tothe drinking bit) waving his arms like a rock star announcing that now that he was there we could begin.

The first thing he asked was who was a member. All the management raised their hands, none of the diggers (PO's included). He haragued us about our failure to belong and when somebody later pointed out to him that the going monthly rate was the same as a week's food (and many of us kept a permanent home elsewhere) he got really hostile and not so quietly implied that none of us could budget.

Actually, as the meeting progressed it became painfully clear that he had no idea in practical terms what we actually did for a living, what we were happy to do (like get muddy) and what actually concerned us (contract length and training).

That episode really put me off joining a union. Some employers later, when I did and needed advice I was told that there wasn't really anything to be done because as a meticulous as I am with record keeping I never kept a close enough eye on the one area I never thought I'd have to cover (my employers). I realise that unions need concrete facts to work with, but the very least I expect is some good advice and suggestions on how to procede with one's working life.

Yes, I'm all for solidarity, but from now on I'll only give my money to a union I feel gives a damn.
Reply
#6
The unions are far from perfect, Prospect or UNISON, but they are all we have to represent us on a national level. I know that union membership is far from a universal panacea but not joining means isolation and self-representation; there is strength in numbers and together we have a better chance to fight for the pay and conditions that we all have a right to expect

[Image: OzinLondon.jpg]
Reply
#7
Its a hard one... for my mind... after being in a union.. and being let down .... I never joined again...
At the meeting in York.. I pointed out that For Standards there was IfA for Emplyers there was FAME (SCAUM) for Curators/Council staff there was Unison/ALGAO for Education there was the ATF but for employees? well.. PROSPECT? .... not really done anything (that I can see) an out of date 7 point manifesto... and not much else... strength in numbers only counts when the representation does work for you.

Keep yer cash!

"Gie's a Job.."
Prof. 'Dolly' Parton
Reply
#8
Dave, I've been let down as well - horrendously so - and I've seen diggers shafted by union officials whose only concern was the interests of full time employees, short contract employees were thrown to the wolves (the Prospect officials who did that have nothing but contempt from me). but by not joining a union, any union, the individual has to take on the full might of the employer all by themself, at least with union membership they have free access to representation by employment law specialists

[Image: OzinLondon.jpg]
Reply
#9
Quote:quote:they have free access to representation by employment law specialists

That is exactly where Prospect let me down. I now fight my battles by myself although I would much prefer to do it collectively.
Reply
#10
See the new Voice for the Worker thread

"Gie's a Job.."
Prof. 'Dolly' Parton
Reply


Possibly Related Threads...
Thread Author Replies Views Last Post
  Archaeology as a Career: The Way Forward: Diggers Forum/Prospect Conference 14th July kevin wooldridge 1 2,095 1st May 2012, 10:10 AM
Last Post: kevin wooldridge
  Dodgy knockback from Prospect troll 4 3,002 11th July 2010, 08:38 AM
Last Post: BAJR
  PROSPECT....where are you? BAJR Host 57 22,633 17th February 2010, 08:54 PM
Last Post: brazier
  Prospect Careers Event - London BAJR Host 6 3,785 31st March 2009, 07:34 PM
Last Post: monty
  PROSPECT questionnaire - IMPORTANT BAJR Host 15 10,402 20th December 2007, 06:35 PM
Last Post: Noddy
  Prospect Pay Claim drpeterwardle 1 1,480 30th December 2006, 09:15 PM
Last Post: drpeterwardle
  Prospect Questionaire trowelfodder 5 3,848 13th November 2006, 10:57 PM
Last Post: deepdigger
  Prospect Archaeology Newsletter - August BAJR Host 4 3,681 7th September 2006, 12:17 PM
Last Post: BAJR Host
  Prospect young members questionnaire gumbo 4 3,472 9th April 2006, 12:03 AM
Last Post: troll
  Institute of Field Archaeologists and Prospect Troll 36 14,372 21st May 2005, 10:33 AM
Last Post: BAJR Host

Forum Jump:


Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)