Sick Pay, Holidays, Pensions Now!

The 3Cosas campaign takes the fight for adequate working conditions for outsourced cleaners to the doors of Senate House, writes Andrew Dolan
24 October 2013


Workers and students protested outside Senate House today, demanding the University of London (UoL) provide its outsourced cleaners with adequate sick pay, holidays and pensions. Today's protest was just one action in the long running campaign known as 3Cosas.

3Cosas, which translates as 'three things' in Spanish, has proved to be one of the most interesting industrial disputes in London in recent years. Not only have workers displayed an admirable militancy, a willingness to risk their already precarious position in search of adequate working conditions (those three things: sick pay, holidays, pensions), but a significant number of students from many of UoL's colleges have been consistently active in their support of the cleaners. Previous demonstrations have seen the arrest and charging of students and the implementation of a campus-wide ban on protest. Today's action was in defiance of that ban.

According to the University of London Union Vice President and one of the organisers of the demonstration, Daniel Cooper, 'today's protest was magnificent and underlined the overwhelming support outsourced staff, who make the university function ever single day, have from students and the university community.' He went on to say that  'the University of London shamed itself when it sunk to filming its own students and invited over twenty police officers onto campus, which in my view despoils the basic character of the university as a site of critical thinking and dissent.'

The 3Cosas campaign will continue to pressure UoL over the coming months. Below is the 3Cosas campaign video and two enjoyable shorts of recent actions conducted by UoL students in support of the cleaners' struggle:

For more information on 3Cosas, how to get involved and details of future events see:


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Gavin Edwards 24 October 2013, 16.59

They were making a great noise when I was reading in Senate House Library today so I went out and clapped them through the gates and security guards.

Yesterday I saw a UNISON demo near SOAS called for these services to be brought in-house. Is that complementing the 3Cosas campaign or opposed to them?

3 Cosas Supporter 24 October 2013, 23.15

Hey Gavin, thanks for the support! The UNISON demo yesterday was in support of the SOAS Justice For Cleaners campaign and many 3 Cosas supporters were there too- it was very much complementary, though the demands on each campus/workplace differ slightly owing to circumstance. All the Bloomsbury outsourced workers’ campaigns are mutually supportive and self-reinforcing, and it’s united staff across trade unions and workplaces in the local area which is a brilliant model for the labour movement to follow everywhere.

Gavin Edwards 28 October 2013, 18.31

Thanks! That’s good news.Gavin

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