Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/307/12644
Bosses Get £Millions: Workers Get Sacked
Strike back now!
TWO GROUPS of vitally important workers could face huge job cuts, just as the crisis in Britain's capitalist economy gets worse. Network Rail announced that they were to cut 2,000 railworkers' jobs as part of a £13 billion cost-cutting package.
Network Rail's decision was a "disgrace," said RMT union general secretary Bob Crow: "Days after senior executives are awarded nearly £2 million in bonuses comes the news that 2,000 rail workers are to be given their P45s... any compulsory redundancies will be resisted, with industrial action if necessary.
"It's time to make sure that public money going into rail is spent on the railways not on making fat cats fatter. It's time to bring the network back into public ownership."
The second group facing job losses are the firefighters. The New Labour government didn't only turn down the FBU union's £8.50 an hour pay claim, they are demanding 'reforms' of the fire service which go further than the hated Bain report.
Firefighters could lose jobs. The first reports suggest 6,000 could go. An earlier Fire Cover Review recommended more than doubling the Fire Service budget and taking on more firefighters. But New Labour prefer to accept the recommendations of the Bain report which talks of job cuts, extensions of duties and responsibilities - and making them even worse.
Such attacks shouldn't go unanswered. Rail workers and firefighters should campaign for strike action if one job is threatened. Bob Crow's talk of industrial action and the need to bring the rail system back into public ownership are welcome signs. Rail workers should ensure that these fighting words are turned into action.
In The Socialist 5 July 2003: