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Posted on 13 January 2012 at 16:28 GMT

Shop Stewards' Network Meets in Preston

Dave Beale

Local supporters of the National Shop Stewards Network met in Preston on Wednesday 11 January to discuss the national pension dispute.

PCS Group Executive Committee member for DWP, Gavin Hartley, reported back from the 7 January PCS Left Unity meeting in London.

He emphasised the bold lead that PCS had given nationally and the great shift in mood of the mass of trade union members created by the monumental 30 November strike.

The meeting was dismayed by the lack of national leadership provided by Unison, with its failure to reject the Con-Dem government's shabby 'Heads of Agreement' deal.

Unite local activist, Andy Birchall, argued that: "From our point of view, it's game on...We still have enough muscle to win this dispute."

The meeting agreed that most union members would be outraged by any union leaders backing down from a fight at this stage, and Trades Council secretary Lynne Wallace said that members of all unions must therefore be included in any local organisation to support the dispute.

The meeting adopted the principles outlined at the national PCS Left Unity conference of 7 January and agreed to contact local left organisations and activists in unions for a further local NSSN solidarity meeting in early February.

Preston Trades Council will also be meeting shortly and will discuss building support for the next stage of the dispute.

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