Link to this page: http://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/321/9653
Fighting low pay
New Labour and their big business friends try to claim there isn't enough money to pay workers a living wage. Yet the fat cats' wages keep going up.
For example, the chief executive of Tesco receives £916,000 a year basic salary. If he works a 40-hour week this means he gets a huge £440.38 an hour! On top of this obscene pay he received additional benefits during 2002 bringing his total pay package to £2.8 million!
Yet a 16-year-old Tesco worker can get paid as little as £3.77 an hour. This is less than 1% of what the Tesco Chief Executive earns.
Low pay is an issue that affects the majority of young people across the country who are often forced to work in low-paid shop, bar, catering or factory work. Many of these jobs are casual or part-time work in unsafe working conditions. For this reason, most young workers are paid less than older workers. (see pages 6 and 7)
International Socialist Resistance (ISR) launched our 'Low pay - No way!' campaign earlier this year to help organise the campaign for a living wage.
At this year's ISR conference, Billy Hayes (General Secretary of the CWU - Communication Workers Union) will be speaking at the Fight for your Future rally on the campaigns in the CWU against privatisation of public services and the recent postal workers' campaign for a living wage.
There will also be a workshop on how to campaign against low pay and a discussion on organising in your workplace. This will be run by supporters of the Australian sister organisation of ISR who are involved in leading campaigns against low pay and casualisation in the workplace.
This workshop is an opportunity for young workers to get together to discuss how best ISR can build the Low Pay - No Way campaign and how best to help other young workers get organised in the workplaces to fight for our rights.
There will also be workshops on:
- Fighting the far right and racism.
- Socialist Students - campaigning against attacks on Higher Education.
- Organising in the schools.
- Building ISR in your area.
If you are not already signed up to go to ISR conference, get your tickets by contacting ISR on: 020 8558 7947 email@example.com
PO BOX 858, London, E11 1YG.
Tickets are £4 waged/£2 unwaged (cheques and postal orders to be made payable to ISR).
Saturday 22 November
10:00am - 5:00pm, Upper Hall, University of London Union, Malet St, London, WC1 (nearest tubes Euston, Euston Sq, Goodge St).
In The Socialist 1 November 2003: