Saturday, July 19, 2008

Fair Pint signings

Hi Liam. Just over 500 lessees have signed to Fair Pint so far. This is very good considering we've only been going for about nine weeks, particularly as it seems most publicans don't read their trade press. We agree it is essential to increase membership as quickly as possible. We are doing a mass mail out next week. We've heard that MPs are being approached about Fair Pint by their constituents right across the country. This is very encouraging. And we've heard that PubCos have been putting pressure on tenants who take part in internet forums - NOT TO. I find it absolutely incredible that PubCo employees can even think about approaching their lessees in this way. It seems proof that they live in a mentality where intimidation of lessees is so commonplace they aren't even aware they are bullying. But NOTHING shocks me any more about the behaviour of PubCos. They are ruthless. Have you signed up? Tell as many people as you can about Fair Pint and assure them information about their membership will be kept absolutely secure. We are all in this together. Keep in touch.
Hi Paul. Thanks for the message. I think you have a lot of good points about this - and agree that a representative membership organisation is needed, particularly for PubCo lessees - the isolation people experience is a real problem. This is something Fair Pint might develop into but right now we only have the resources to make this campaign build up to the select committee hearing in the autumn. We're doing a mass mail out next week. We must build membership as quickly as possible. It's crucial that we have rock solid evidence about PubCo behaviour from right across the spectrum - realistically this inquiry is THE last chance for breaking the power of the PubCos and the abuses they employ - if this inquiry goes in favour of the PubCos the pub 'broadly competitive' industry won't be looked at again by government for years. We have to put everything into building membership and gathering evidence. Do you keep meeting notes and a diary of visits by your PubCo staff? That is the kind of evidence we need - you can be sure they don't keep notes for themselves - we need to prove, among other more formal things, that PubCo practices include intimidation and threats. VERY IMPORTANT this because MPs - and civilised people from outside the pub trade - find it incredible, and difficult to believe, that these things still go on in this day and age. They tend to think lessees are exaggerating what goes on and without absolute proof this in itself paradoxically weakens our position.

Must go and sort out children. Keep in touch. And tell as many people as possible about Fair Pint.

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