Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/711/14233

From The Socialist newspaper, 28 March 2012

National action needed to stop the pensions robbery

Last week's issue of the Socialist carried an explanation of why the PCS civil service union had decided not to call action on 28 March. This was a direct consequence of the teachers' union NUT decision not to call national action on that day but instead to call a strike across London. This was in spite of Martin Powell-Davies, a Socialist Party member, arguing at the NUT national executive for national action on 28 March.

The following is an extract from the Socialist Party leaflet distributed to striking teachers on 28 March, which explains how the pensions battle can go forward.

NUT london strike and demo 28 March 2012, photo  Socialist Party

NUT london strike and demo 28 March 2012, photo Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

After the massive show of trade union strength and unity on 30 November, this government could not have believed its luck when, just a few weeks later, the leaders of unions like ATL and Unison shamefully retreated and accepted the unacceptable terms of the 'Heads of Agreement' pensions offer, which would still mean paying more, working longer and getting less.

Weakness has only invited further attacks. While giving even more handouts to the wealthy top 1%, Osborne announced in the Budget that pension ages will be rising even faster. A teacher in their 30s would not now have to work until 68 to get their full pension - but maybe to 70!

Faced with these attacks, union leaders can't afford to hesitate. Unions need to be fighting just as hard for their members, and for the millions that rely on schools and services, as the Con-Dems are for the millionaires.

While others ran for cover, unions including the NUT, UCU and PCS stood firm and regrouped, preparing their members for further national action on 28 March. But even the NUT leadership hesitated at the last minute and opted for a strike only across the London region.

Next phase

NUT strike 28 March 2012, photo  Socialist Party

NUT strike 28 March 2012, photo Socialist Party   (Click to enlarge)

28 March must be the start of the next phase of the campaign, not the end. But isolated regional action can't put the government under pressure in the same way that united national strike action can.

NUT members in London, and across the country, have been asking why only London members were asked to strike. The fact is that, under pressure, and left isolated by others holding back from action like the NASUWT, a majority on the NUT executive lost faith that members would take more action. It has been left to the London NUT membership, and the hard work of local officers and school reps, to show that, given a lead, teachers will stand together.

But now how do we build from here? Delegates at the NUT annual conference over Easter have the responsibility to decide on the next stage of the campaign. The NUT executive agreed a flexible formula of "bringing all other regions and Wales, in turn or together, into pensions action". But no dates have yet been set for calling out other regions on strike.

If NUT conference votes to support regional action, then a clear and speedy calendar of rolling strikes needs to be announced so that the government, and trade unionists, know we are serious.

But Socialist Party Teachers believes that it would be better to call out everyone together in a national strike, supported by other unions. United national action is our most effective weapon. National strikes are also far easier to coordinate with other fighting unions, like the PCS, than regional activities.

Socialist Party Teachers believes we should consider a two-day strike to escalate pressure on ministers. 28 March has taught ministers that trade unionists will fight their cuts. It's also taught trade unionists that they need to elect fighting trade union leaderships.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.


In The Socialist 28 March 2012:


Socialist Party news and analysis

Tories stand for the 1%... We need a voice for the 99%!

Budget for the 1% must be fought

Toasting the cuts - councils show no remorse

Wales: Does Plaid Cymru leadership vote show left turn?

Budget 2012: reject regional pay

World warming even faster than thought

Them and Us


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Abortion - defend and extend the right to choose

Rare sighting of Tories in Scotland

Brighton Uni: Socialist Students five votes from victory


Socialist election campaigning

Programme for the May elections - For the millions, not the millionaires

London TUSC: Standing to say "there is an alternative"

Former Liverpool 47 councillor to give socialist challenge for mayor


Socialist Party workplace news

National action needed to stop the pensions robbery

Tanker drivers vote to strike

Save the Remploy factories - not for sale or closure at any price

Workplace In Brief


International socialist news and analysis

French presidential election - An emerging left challenge

Spain: Workers gear up for general strike

Million Hoodies March against racist murders in the US


Socialist Party review

Review: We must look - the photographs of Don McCullin


 

Home   |   The Socialist 28 March 2012   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   PDF  




Related links:

Pensions:

triangleTory prescription for mental illness: stress and bureaucracy

triangleBT pensions review - oppose the attacks on the pension schemes

trianglePlymouth PCS members fight relocation threat

triangleRoyal Mail bosses block strike - back postal workers

triangleSet for national strike action

NUT:

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

triangleEscalate summer strike wave into coordinated action to defeat the pay cap

triangleSchools and teaching: A perfect storm of cuts, underfunding, excessive workloads and low pay

triangleEducation cuts forced back

Unions:

triangleAppeal from Iranian independent unions

triangleNewham academy strikes spread to Cumberland school

Teachers:

triangleTeacher recruitment falls by a third - cut workload, not funding

News and socialist analysis

News and socialist analysis

15/1/18

Carillion

Carillion crisis: demand action to save jobs and services

10/1/18

Tories

Cabinet chaos as shambolic reshuffle underlines Theresa May's impotence

10/1/18

NHS

Sustained mass movement needed to stop Tories wrecking our NHS

10/1/18

Education

Bigot Toby Young quits - now scrap the new uni regulator driving privatisation

10/1/18

Them & Us

Them & Us

10/1/18

Teachers

Teacher recruitment falls by a third - cut workload, not funding

3/1/18

Fire service

Fire service victory

3/1/18

Fares

Rail: fares up, bosses' pay up - delays and cancellations up

3/1/18

Higher Education

Mobilise against rip-off executive pay

3/1/18

Virgin

NHS in winter crisis as Branson creams off 1bn

3/1/18

Homes

Thousands live in tents and sheds - seize empty homes

3/1/18

Fat cats

Widening wealth gap, increase in poverty...make the fat cats pay

1/1/18

Capitalism

2018: more upheavals loom

13/12/17

NHS

Save our NHS

13/12/17

Labour

Labour 'purge' furore really just democracy

triangleMore News and socialist analysis articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party

triangle16 Jan Home care workers to strike

triangle15 Jan Carillion crisis: Demand action to save jobs and services

triangle12 Jan Outrage against 'monster block' plan

triangle12 Jan Mini-strike wave continues and intensifies

triangle10 Jan Strike wins biggest pay rise in ten years

triangle10 Jan Movement of workers and youth challenges Iranian regime

triangle10 Jan Cabinet chaos as shambolic reshuffle underlines Theresa May's...

More ...

triangle17 Jan Cardiff Central Socialist Party: Planning for 2018

triangle17 Jan Salford Socialist Party: Housing crisis - the socialist solution

triangle17 Jan Hackney Socialist Party: Slum housing in the past; and the crisis today

triangle17 Jan Caerphilly Socialist Party: Mass movement challenges Iranian regime

More ...

Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

Archive

Archives:

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999

Legal

SP RSS feed RSS

Platform setting: = No platform choice

V2