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Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/416/4734

From The Socialist newspaper, 17 November 2005

Stoke bus drivers:

Eighth strike for 8 an hour

ON 19 and 20 November First Bus drivers will strike for the eight and ninth time in North Staffordshire. As reported in previous issues of the socialist, First Bus can easily pay the wage increase to 8 an hour that the drivers are demanding from the 50,000 profit the drivers earn for the company every day.

In the last week, First Bus have announced half yearly profits of 40.7 million. Does this mean drivers will now get 8 an hour? Of course not! First Bus has decided instead to increase dividends to shareholders by 10%.

No wonder the drivers are angry at the attitude of First Bus bosses. One driver said: "This stinks, those who drive buses and make the profits get an offer which is an insult and those who don't drive buses get an increase".

The longer this strike has gone on the more determined drivers have become. No buses have moved. Polish, Czech and Hungarian workers have stood shoulder to shoulder on the picket line. At the main Adderley Green depot, a caravan organised by the workers themselves provides food and drinks for those on picket duty.

And Stoke Socialist Party has demonstrated the massive support which exists for the drivers among ordinary working-class people by collecting more than 2,500 names on a petition. This support was summed up by one bloke who limped up to our stall in Hanley and told us, "Because of the strike I have had to walk from Tunstall to Hanley. I couldn't afford a taxi and I suffer from acute thrombosis in both legs but I want to sign your petition because I support the bus drivers' fight for decent pay".

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In The Socialist 17 November 2005:

Time for a new workers' party

Socialism 2005: Building a socialist alternative

"Looking forward to changing the world"

Campaign for a new workers' party

Northumbria socialist students rock against racism

Selection and 'free market' threaten our schools

We want our buses back!

Reinstate Andy Beadle

Eighth strike for 8 an hour

SACKED for speaking out

PCS launches jobs campaign

Angry Commons cleaners fight back

A struggle for survival

Bush regime in crisis


 

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