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Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/14796

Posted on 29 June 2012 at 16:06 GMT

'The drivers united cannot be defeated'

Paula Mitchell, London Socialist Party secretary
Leyton bus workers took part in the 22 June 2012 London-wide bus strike , photo by Paul Mattsson

Leyton bus workers took part in the 22 June 2012 London-wide bus strike , photo by Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Following the fantastic pickets on the London bus strike on Friday 22 June, flexing the mighty muscle of the workforce, further protest, backed up by trade unionists and campaigners' action, has followed this up.

This is particularly to target the companies which won injunctions last week (Metroline, Go Ahead and Arriva) and, crucially, to support drivers in those companies.

This battle has been taken very seriously and support has been mobilised for the bus workers.

On Tuesday 26 June protests were held at seven Metroline companies and a bus MOT centre was blockaded.

Today the same was done at five garages: Willesden, Westbourne Park, Edgware, Putney and Lambeth, plus a protest in Watford.

Busworkers' supporters paraded up and down (American labour movement style!) across the front of the garage to blockade it. For over an hour no buses moved at any of these garages!

In the words of one of the drivers, "This is fantastic, this is why we are in a union." The workers in the three companies who won the injunctions are re-balloting but in the meantime these protests build their confidence so they know they are not alone.

This action also hits the companies and gives ideas about how anti-trade union legislation can be challenged.

Socialist Party members participated in Putney and Edgware. In both places all the traffic was jammed - in Edgware even the police couldn't get through!

An inflatable rat - "TfL don't rat on drivers" - was joined by the NSSN banner at Edgware, while protesters sang: "You won't get me - I'm part of the Union"

In Putney we paraded to the strains of "Until we get our bonus paid, We're no' driving down the road"!

Unite has announced two more official strike days: 5 and 24 July. And in the meantime, these bold protests are set to continue!

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