Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/351/5806
'Pay Us A Living Wage'
Fight for a decent pension - come to the 19 June TUC demo
For a one-day public sector workers' strike
WAR IN Iraq, privatisation, cuts in public services - these are issues that ordinary people wanted to punish Blair for in the elections. But workers' anger in the workplace is also erupting over low pay, attacks on pensions and conditions, and job cuts.
Like the Grim Reaper, Gordon Brown wants to axe 80,000 jobs in the public sector, including 30,000 in the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). Workers in this sector are so low paid that many are claiming the very benefits that they are responsible for administering!
Now their union, PCS, is preparing for more strike days in the campaign for a living wage. PCS member David Burke from Bradford told the socialist: "The members are still very angry about low pay. They want to make it clear to the management that we will not wait until Christmas for a pay offer, like in previous years. If there is no decent offer on the table by 1 July then we will give notice of two days of strike action".
Across Scotland, nursery nurses went on all-out strike for several weeks to win a better pay deal. More and more workers are realising that they need to take action to end low pay and to defend their jobs and conditions. Even the TUC felt compelled to respond to workers' anger by organising a demonstration on pensions on 19 June.
It was Socialist Party members in PCS who initiated the call for this demonstration. The Socialist Party believes that it should be the springboard for a one-day strike of all public-sector workers, uniting with workers in other sections and service users to defend the public sector.
In The Socialist 12 June 2004:
Socialist Party workplace news
International socialist news and analysis