Bully-boy tactics by bosses were in the spotlight today as sparks took to the streets of London against wage cuts and GMB threatened legal action over blacklisting.
About 50 construction electricians and other activists demonstrated outside a building site near St Pancras station, targeting Crown House, who they accuse of making "back door" moves.
Earlier this year rank-and-file protests and pressure won a major trade union victory in a bitter seven-month row over the scrapping of long-standing national pay agreements.
Seven companies, including Crown House, wanted to jettison the long-standing Joint Industry Board (JIB) agreement in favour of a new Building Engineering Services National Agreement (Besna).
They say the firm is now trying to change electricians' contracts and pay rates unilaterally, despite industry-wide negotiations taking place aimed at securing a single, national agreement to replace the JIB.
Activists said they beat Besna and now they'll beat what they're calling Besna2. Protests are planned every Friday at Crown House sites.
Meanwhile, GMB is threatening legal action unless the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) informs 2,863 builders their names are still on a blacklist the office has had since 2009.
In a letter to the ICO the union also wants them to take action against the 44 companies that blacklisted the builders.
It follows a similar letter from Liberty a few weeks ago and both Liberty and GMB are criticising the ICO for refusing to act for the past three years.
In 2009, the ICO seized a database used by companies to vet new recruits and keep out of employment trade union and health and safety activists.