Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/articles/11001

Posted on 24 January 2011 at 13:52 GMT

Second show of strength by Medirest workers

For the second time, hundreds of Medirest cleaners at Southampton General hospital came out on strike on 19-21 January to fight for unpaid wages and sick pay. For some workers this amounts to 3,500 owed since the implementation of Agenda for Change in 2006.

Nick Chaffey, Southern region Socialist Party

Strikers said: "They want a team, but you can't be part of a team if they treat you like dirt. We are working women with young families and we need fair pay and a bit of respect. They want to keep the poor, poor. We work very hard and will fight for what is ours".

The strike has created a very strong and determined mood to stand firm. Of 272 workers, 254 are now in the trade union Unison. Workers from seven different nationalities work in the team.

Unison steward Jo Spear explained what effect they have had: "It is bringing everyone together, all nationalities have stuck together. We've put our cards on the table and the Trust are having to take note. We are still angry at what's happening. Not just the money, it's about respect and how we are treated. Recently we were told they had run out of money to vaccinate staff against swine flu and if we wanted it we had to pay for it ourselves! The word is getting out around the hospital. People want to know the facts. We are standing up and fighting for what is right. We have built a strong union and will fight on".

On Thursday 20 January , 200 Medirest strikers joined hundreds of council workers in a mass demonstration and rally. Over 800 council workers from Unison and Unite held a joint meeting which unanimously rejected council proposals to cut jobs, pay, and terms and conditions. It was the biggest meeting for years and the biggest trade union demonstration in Southampton for decades. The mood of anger was summed up in the roar of approval for a teaching assistant who raised the need for the unions to follow Greece and France and organise a one-day general strike.

The mounting anger amongst public sector workers needs to be turned into pressure on local authorities to use their financial reserves and borrowing facilities to avert immediate cuts. Across the south, job cuts and attacks on terms and conditions are being announced, including 1,200 job cuts in Hampshire County Council. Mass lobbies of council budget meetings are being organised in Southampton, Portsmouth and Winchester in February.

The turnout for the TUC demo on 26 March will be huge. The urgent task will be to ensure this anger is translated into effective strike action capable of halting these cuts.

The fight to stop the closure of the NHS Bitterne Walk-In continues to gain support. Students are continuing to fight the education cuts. In a sign of growing unemployment locally, 5,000 people turned up to a jobs fair at Southampton Airport offering 100 jobs.

Southampton Shop Stewards Network is holding a Fight the Cuts demonstration on Saturday 5 February with support from Southampton trades council, the PCS and other union activists. It will be followed by a meeting to discuss the launch of an anti-cuts union in the city to bring together the different struggles facing workers, youth and those on benefits.

Why not click here to join the Socialist Party, or click here to donate to the Socialist Party.






Related links:

Medirest:

triangleNorth London hospital workers fight cuts and job losses

triangleEaling hospital workers fight miserly Medirest

triangleSouthampton: strikes set to continue

triangleWorkers turn up the heat in Southampton

triangleCuts in jobs and services: We are fighting back!

Cuts:

triangleCoventry TUSC: Council cuts - how can we fight back?

triangleLewisham & Southwark Socialist Party: What would a socialist council look like?

triangleBristol South Socialist Party: How can councils protect public services?

triangleWorkers' victory over anti-union Scottish council

Council:

triangleBromley library workers win strike campaign

triangleVictorious Fearnville Fields campaigners thank the Socialist

triangleHaringey TUSC fights Blairite cuts

Southampton:

triangleSouthampton Socialist Party: How can society make the best use of technology?

triangleSouthampton asks "What will you do to stop education cuts?"

Strike:

triangleUCU members vote to end pensions dispute

Pay:

triangleUsdaw conference 2018: time for new era of fighting trade unionism

Hospital:

triangle1,400 beds empty as patients lay in corridors: health unions must act now

NHS:

triangleLeeds TUSC: How can we stop NHS cuts & privatisation?

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

22/4/18

Bromley

Bromley library workers win strike campaign

18/4/18

UCU

UCU members vote to end pensions dispute

18/4/18

Usdaw

Usdaw conference 2018: time for new era of fighting trade unionism

18/4/18

Leeds

Victorious Fearnville Fields campaigners thank the Socialist

18/4/18

Hull

Hull says no to war, no to austerity

18/4/18

The Socialist

The Socialist - a fighting, campaigning, workers' paper

18/4/18

Socialist Party

Building fund: 150,000 milestone smashed!

18/4/18

Fighting Fund

Give us your change (and more) to fight for system change!

18/4/18

Scotland

Workers' victory over anti-union Scottish council

18/4/18

Newham

Avenue School strikers and parents win judicial review

18/4/18

PCS

Vote for a left, fighting PCS leadership

18/4/18

PCS

PCS rejects Acas offer - further strikes announced

18/4/18

Bromley

Bromley libraries - indefinite strike action continues

18/4/18

Butterfields

Butterfields tenants join TUSC campaign

13/4/18

Cuts

Fighting the cuts to women's services

triangleMore Reports and campaigns articles...


Join the Socialist Party
Subscribe to Socialist Party publications
Donate to the Socialist Party
Socialist Party Facebook page
Socialist Party on Twitter
Visit us on Youtube

LATEST POSTS

CONTACT US

Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777

Email: info@socialistparty.org.uk

Locate your nearest Socialist Party branch Text your name and postcode to 07761 818 206

Regional Socialist Party organisers:

Eastern: 0798 202 1969

East Mids: 0773 797 8057

London: 020 8988 8786

North East: 0784 114 4890

North West 07769 611 320

South East: 020 8988 8777

South West: 07759 796 478

Southern: 07833 681910

Wales: 07935 391 947

West Mids: 02476 555 620

Yorkshire: 0114 264 6551

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


April 2018

March 2018

February 2018

January 2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999