Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/488/2433
Greenwich workers shame councillors
OVER 100 Greenwich council workers fighting against proposed cuts to pay and conditions shouted "shame on you" as councillors entered the town hall on the evening of 16 May. The council plans to use Single Status to attack wages and working conditions.
Greenwich council worker
Everyone is angry especially as councillors and chief officers have given themselves huge pay rises in recent months.
UNISON Branch Secretary Onay Kasab said: "Greenwich councillors felt the full force of our members' anger. We are angry because while their allowances increase, our members will suffer low pay. Some members will lose pay.
"The council claims low-paid women will gain, yet for catering workers this will amount to less than £2 gross - Hardly eradicating low pay!"
The militant stance taken by the union, where the Socialist Party is playing a leading role, is already beginning to bring rewards. The council have begun conceding in a number of key areas.
The union campaign now means that many workers will actually see improvements in pay and leave and manual workers will see a reduction in the working week from 36 to 35 hours.
However, many workers still face a reduction in pay. For instance, gravediggers face a cut of £18.55 per week.
White-collar workers face the prospect of downgrading and the removal of payments for being on call, enhancements and other plus payments.
Socialist Party members have proposed that the campaign must continue with no relaxation just because of some concessions.
This, together with the commitment to make the slogan: "an injury to one is an injury to all" a concrete reality, is now the official branch position.
In The Socialist 24 May 2007:
Labour Party leadership
Socialist Party NHS campaign
Socialist Party news and analysis
Marxist analysis: history
Environment and socialism