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View Full Version : UK public sector pension strike Wednesday 30/11/2011



PaddyJoe
30-11-2011, 01:15 AM
A thread for any info or updates on today's industrial action. Some background info from the Guardian:

Public sector workers who are members of 29 trade unions (http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/tradeunions) have voted to strike over proposed government reforms to their pensions that include: a 2.8bn increase in contribution payments by 2014/2015; pegging the retirement age to the state pension age; switching the way pensions are uprated every year from the higher RPI rate of inflation to the lower CPI rate; and moving staff from final salary schemes to career average schemes. About 2.6 million people were balloted - across the range of public sector posts from teachers to immigration officers and care workers - with an estimated 750,000 voting yes. It will be the biggest bout of industrial unrest since the 1979 winter of discontent.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/society/2011/nov/29/public-sector-strikes-november-30

Baron von Biffo
30-11-2011, 11:04 AM
No doubt Irish PS workers are looking enviously at the their UK peers and wondering what it must be like to have union leaders who will defend you.

Jolly Red Giant
30-11-2011, 12:06 PM
up to 50,000 demonstrating in Manchester
700 in Warrington
400 in Aylesbury
over 2,000 assmebled to begin march in Derby
up to 3,000 in Nottingham
500 attend a rally in Torquay
500 on the picketline at the Royal London Hospital
30,000 marching in Bristol - biggest trade union demo since 1932
Biggest demo in Salford since the 1920's - feeder demo for Manchester march
Lincoln's Inn Field - the venue for the London regional demo is jam-packed with protestors - there is no space left.
300,000 public sector workers in Scotland and 170,000 in Wales are on strike.
1,000 marching in Lincoln - biggest ever trade union demo.
5,000 in Leicester with people lining the street and clapping in support as the demo is passing.
Number of protestors in Nottingham swell to 10,000 - TUC only allow 900 into the rally
5,000 in Leeds
5,000 in Southampton
400 in Luton

C. Flower
30-11-2011, 12:12 PM
No doubt Irish PS workers are looking enviously at the their UK peers and wondering what it must be like to have union leaders who will defend you.

They have leadership issues the same as ours do.
They failed to defend the miners, under Thatcher, and were much weakened after that.
Marches (unless the whole population turns out) and one day pickets are mainly for the venting of hot air.

Jolly Red Giant
30-11-2011, 12:18 PM
They have leadership issues the same as ours do.
They failed to defend the miners, under Thatcher, and were much weakened after that.
Marches (unless the whole population turns out) and one day pickets are mainly for the venting of hot air.
Compared to the 1980's there are more 'left' unions today than during the miners strike. At that time the NUM were pretty much on their own (with the exception of possibly the CPSA and the BFAWU). Today a whole host of British unions have left leaderships and strong rank-and-file left movements.

C. Flower
30-11-2011, 12:46 PM
Compared to the 1980's there are more 'left' unions today than during the miners strike. At that time the NUM were pretty much on their own (with the exception of possibly the CPSA and the BFAWU). Today a whole host of British unions have left leaderships and strong rank-and-file left movements.

Scargill was Left, but would not call for a General Strike.

Jolly Red Giant
30-11-2011, 01:05 PM
Scargill was Left, but would not call for a General Strike.
The TUC leaders would have scuppered a call for a general strike in exactly the same way they sabotaged the power workers strike in support of the miners.

C. Flower
30-11-2011, 03:12 PM
Very big London march reported. Any news on this ?

Jolly Red Giant
30-11-2011, 03:20 PM
Latest updates

4,000 demonstrate in Hull
1,500 in Oldham (agency workers threatened with the sack if they join the strike)
2,500 in Huddersfield
5,000 in sheffield
400 in Carmarthen in Wales
2,500 in Hertford
In Scotland only 33 out of 2,700 schools are open
Widespread strike by UK court staff - coverage provided to allow the Stephen Lawrence murder trial to continue.

Jolly Red Giant
30-11-2011, 03:32 PM
Very big London march reported. Any news on this ?
2092 London schools shut
35,000 hospital workers in London on strike

Baron von Biffo
30-11-2011, 03:36 PM
2092 London schools shut
35,000 hospital workers in London on strike

We had a work-to-rule in the passport office and the WhineLine switchboard jammed as every arsehole in the country wanted to get on air to demonise the staff.

C. Flower
30-11-2011, 03:46 PM
We had a work-to-rule in the passport office and the WhineLine switchboard jammed as every arsehole in the country wanted to get on air to demonise the staff.

Maybe, but I heard plenty of people express their thanks to the passport workers for taking a stand. Pity there weren't more like them.

A big shout out to them now ....

THANKS !

C. Flower
01-12-2011, 10:03 AM
2 million people, approximately, took part in the strike yesterday.

http://www.emergencyemail.org/newsemergency/anmviewer.asp?a=1630&z=34

Baron von Biffo
02-12-2011, 11:46 AM
The UK government is claiming that there was a substantial level of scabbing :-

"38 per cent of schools opened, it insisted, while one-third of public servants were at their desks."

It would be interesting to see if schools 'opened' means more than just a solitary scab unlocking the doors or if the claim of 1/3 PS workers at their desks is counting defence forces and police and others legally prohibited from striking.

http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/opinion/2011/1202/1224308472178.html

Red Justice
11-12-2011, 10:34 PM
WESTMINSTER - PUBLIC SECTOR PENSION VOTE
by John Duffy on Thu 08 Dec 2011 17:40 GMT
LABOUR LET WORKERS DOWN AND LET TORIES OFF THE HOOK

SNP AND PLAID COMMENT FOLLOWING PUBLIC SECTOR PENSION VOTE

Labour have been condemned for letting the Tories off the hook over punitive public sector pension reforms after the party abstained in the only vote to be held on the issue following a debate on an SNP and Plaid Cymru motion which called for the UK Government to reverse unfair changes to public sector pensions.

The debate – the first since the UK Government announced its pension reforms - comes after more than two million public sector workers took part in a day of action last week. The SNP and Plaid Cymru debate had been welcomed by a number of unions.

Speaking after the vote, SNP Work and Pensions spokesperson Dr Eilidh Whiteford MP said:

“Instead of uniting against these punitive reforms, it is incredible that Labour have chosen to let the Tories off the hook and let public sector workers down by sitting on their hands.

“The millions of workers who marched through the streets last week will be aghast that Labour MPs have refused to even walk through the lobbies for them.

“This was the first debate and vote since the UK Government announced its plans, and it should have been a moment when MP from all parties united against these coalitions cuts.

“Labour are clearly not interested in the welfare of public sector workers. Despite having had thirty six debates since the UK Government announced their plans, Labour has never put this on the agenda and has now abstained.

“It is also clear that these punitive reforms are all about the UK Government's deficit reduction plans, and have nothing to do with securing sustainable pensions. The aggressive and arrogant threat to reduce the Scottish Budget if their reforms are not implemented proves that the Scottish Government has no option outside applying these increases and that the UK Government continues to have the power to meddle and influence issues which are central to the future of Scotland and which should be for the Scottish Government to decide.

“The need for affordable, sustainable and fair public sector pensions is of critical importance to everyone, which is why the short term cash grab by the UK Government is so concerning. Long-term pension reforms must be taken forward with consent and in partnership which is why it was so regrettable that UK Ministers appeared to relish strike action.

“The SNP will continue to will ensure that the voice of ordinary public sector workers is heard in parliament.”

Plaid Cymru Work and Pensions spokesperson, Hywel Williams MP, said:

“Last week’s Day of Action saw more than two million people express their concerns about the UK Government’s changes to public sector pensions and I am pleased that Plaid Cymru and the SNP brought those concerns to the House of Commons.

“These proposals mean public sector workers, who make up three in ten of the Welsh workforce, will work longer, pay more and receive less in their pensions.

“Sadly, the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats, who are making these changes, have been let off the hook by the failure of the Labour Party to stand up for public sector workers.

“That was only what we could expect from a party which did not support the Day of Action and have conspicuously failed to show active support for those who will be affected by these changes.

“We offered Labour MPs the opportunity to show their support for public sector workers – and they did not do so. I shall leave it to those workers to decide what that means.

“Plaid Cymru will continue to fight for fair pensions for everybody, including a living state pension and protecting workers.”

ENDS
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