The Socialist 16 November 2011
Strike together, Protest together, Win together
PDFs for this issue
All out together on 30 November
30 November (N30) is going to be a momentous day. Millions of workers across the country will strike together in a mighty show of force to warn the Con-Dem government and its cabinet of millionaires that we will not accept drastic cuts to our pensions. The National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) has produced a leaflet for workers preparing for N30. A summary is below but you can get supplies of the leaflet for your workplace by ringing 07816 134690 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Striking workers will offset the loss of a day's pay against thousands of pounds lost over a lifetime if these changes are implemented. We won't turn up for work on N30. But neither can we regard it as a 'day off'. The government will be watching and we need to show our strength, not just through absence from work, but with mass demonstrations in every area. The government and media will try to belittle our strength. So what every individual does will count.
If you are in a workplace being balloted, organise a workplace meeting to discuss the strike before the day. Make sure you speak to work colleagues in the run-up to N30 and give them a leaflet explaining why millions are on strike.
We need to prepare ahead of N30. Get union placards that clearly say Official Union Picket Line on them. Ask your workmates now to start making their own placards and banners and you can also get a supply of your union's placards, banners, leaflets and posters.
If there is picketing in your workplace, get along as early as possible. We would encourage everyone to picket their workplace as picket lines are where we can discuss the strike and issues that flow from it, like how we could escalate the action if needed.
After picketing, all striking workers should make their way to their nearest rally or demonstration to swell numbers to the maximum.
Bosses should not ask you before N30 if you intend to strike. Workplace reps only need say, if asked, the number of members in each workplace - nothing else. Bosses are, however, allowed to ask the next day why you did not turn up for work.
Unity is strength. If the ballot is won, all members of striking unions that have balloted will be expected to abide by the decision and go on strike no matter how they themselves responded.
If you are not a member of any union now, like thousands of low-paid and part-time workers, and did not ballot, you can still join a union right up to the day and strike with your colleagues. If you're in a dispute other than the pensions dispute, can you coordinate any planned action so that it takes place on N30?
Many workers who were not directly affected by the pension strikes on 30 June took a day's annual leave in solidarity with striking workers and joined their demonstration. If you are not being balloted but can take leave on N30, book it now.
Unions have millions of members. We need every one of them out on the streets on N30. But we also need everyone else's support - whether working or unemployed, student, or pensioner. Let's fight back together against all the cuts and win together.
The National Shop Stewards Network was set up by the RMT and launched in July 2007. It is now sponsored by a multitude of national unions, union branches, and trades councils.
Its aim is to forge links between grass-roots trade union members across workplaces, industrial sectors, trade unions and regions; to rebuild the strength of our trade union movement from the bottom up; and to help sweep the anti-trade union laws off the books.
In this issue
Fighting the cuts
Socialist Party workplace news
International socialist news and analysis
Socialist Party news and analysis
Socialist Party reports and campaigns
The Socialist - Readers' comments