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From The Socialist newspaper, 22 June 2011

200 workers challenge Labour council cuts

Ken Douglas, Walthamstow Socialist Party
Photo Senan

Photo Senan   (Click to enlarge)

Over 200 council workers staged a noisy and colourful protest outside Waltham Forest town hall in north east London, calling on the Labour council cabinet to step back from forcing new contracts on the workforce, part of the council's 65 million cuts.

This was a joint lobby called by Unison, Unite and GMB, conducted by the three branch secretaries, and followed meetings of all three unions calling for a ballot for strike action. Two Unison meetings had to be moved outside as over 300 members endorsed the call at both.

Photo Senan

Photo Senan   (Click to enlarge)

On top of the hundreds of job cuts that the council has already put through, they are proposing cuts in pay, sick pay, travel allowances and holidays.

For example, a worker from the Meals on Wheels service, who has to use his own vehicle to deliver meals, told the protest that the council were going to stop his car allowance of 70 a month.

Following the announcement to the lobby that the NUT teachers' union had voted by 92% to strike on 30 June against the attacks on public sector pensions, Susan Wills, Waltham Forest college UCU branch secretary and a member of the Socialist Party, emphasised the need for joint strike action to stop the attacks on the public sector.

Linda Taaffe speaks, photo Senan

Linda Taaffe speaks, photo Senan   (Click to enlarge)

Linda Taaffe, Waltham Forest NUT and Socialist Party, received massive cheers when she called on the national leadership of Unison, Unite and the GMB to learn the lessons of the proposed joint action in the borough and "get off their backsides" to join the other public sector unions in national coordinated action against the attacks of the Con-Dem government.

The workers on the lobby enthusiastically waved Socialist Party and NSSN placards, calling for opposition to all the cuts and for a one-day public sector general strike. They queued to sign up to the Waltham Forest Anti-Cuts Union.

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In The Socialist 22 June 2011:


Socialist Party feature

As the cuts bite, millions ask: 'Does it have to be like this?'


Building for 30th June

Con-Dems' pension attack - brutal class warfare must be fought

POA to hold protest meetings

Busting the public sector pensions myths!

Staffordshire NSSN builds support for 30 June action

Hillingdon workers back the pensions strike


Socialist Party workplace news

Strike action to defend Royal Mail jobs

Leeds Unison urges members to reject council's final offer

Coleg Morgannwg: Victory over victimisation

Barnsley lecturers fight job cuts

Unison conferences discuss action on pensions

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party news and analysis

Housing crisis

Con-Dems still plan to destroy NHS - Save our health service!

News in brief


International socialist news and analysis

Greece's debt crisis threatens worldwide banking system


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Finsbury Park - No to A4e cheap labour schemes

Southern Cross bosses demand huge cuts in pay and conditions


Reviews and comments

Sri Lanka's killing fields

Readers' comment: apprentice sexists


Fighting the cuts

Southampton: strikes set to continue

200 workers challenge Labour council cuts

Labour MP fails to answer questions on cuts


Education

Comprehensive education under attack

Keep Tidemill in public hands

Spreading to primaries?


 

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Related links:

Waltham Forest:

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Black workers and the British trade unions

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Building trade unionism among Black and Asian people

triangleWaltham Forest Young Socialists: Deaths in police custody

triangleWaltham Forest Socialist Party: Russia's October 1917 revolution

triangleBarts strike - 'Up the ante' if necessary

Council:

triangleSheffield Labour council threatens peaceful protesters with prison

triangleUnite local government sector plans strike ballot

triangleSchools "can't go any further" - stop the cuts: set deficit budgets now

triangleSalford Unison condemns pay cuts

Cuts:

triangleNorth London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

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triangleYoung people being strangled by debts

Labour:

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Public sector:

triangleConference on state spies: who's watching who?

Socialist Party:

trianglePowerful picture of the Port Talbot steel workers' struggle

Unison:

triangleThe fight against racial discrimination is tied to fighting against capitalist austerity

GMB:

triangleGig economy exploiter Uber loses London licence

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