Next Wednesday from 2pm there will be a petition signing outside the Sheffield branch of John Lewis, followed at 3:45pm by the hand in of a letter calling for caterers and cleaners in John Lewis to be given the same partnership status as the other staff.
 
Nationally, 2600 out of the 73000 staff are excluded from the benefits given to other staff, excluded from the company that twenty years ago outsourced them. Later this month the Partnership Board of John Lewis will be considering whather to reverse the outsourcing, so please do support if you can. If you can’t make it this Wednesday, there are other ways you can get involved.
 
For more details see the facebook event page and for more ideas on what you could do, see the London Quakers site.
 
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Whitehall
 
There was a good discussion of the Whitehall study at the last meeting – here for a short summary of what Whitehall was and how it links working conditions to quality, and length, of life. Some other stuff we discussed follows with a few academic docs if you fancy churning the braincells…
 
If lack of control harms health, is the relationship between income differences and health really about differences in control of day-to-day life? Well some think so…  Others think it’s more likely to be a bit of everything… There’s a successor to the Spirit Level coming all about psychosocial pathways that lead from inequality to health – so this one could run and run…
None of this is new of course, the evidence that social factors impact on health have been around for ages… but the weight of evidence indicates things have to change, perhaps by changing the moral as well as the evidenced based landscape
 
Meanwhile, are you happy at work? Nic Marks and the NEF have launched an innovative new survey for employees and employers… and if you’re not in work, there are better ways of doing social suport, for example the citizens income
 
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Trickle Down
 
“We were told by the Thatcherites of the 80s that wealth would trickle down. Tower Hamlets is proof positive that it doesn’t. If anything, it flows the other way. Have a walk around Bow and Whitechapel and Bethnal Green. Then go to the great glass towers of Canary Wharf, still in the borough but in all other ways another world completely. No, wealth is sucked upwards, it doesn’t trickle down.” Giles Fraser on the launch of the Tower Hamlets Fairness Commission