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From The Socialist newspaper, 7 October 2015

No wage cuts! Fund equal pay in Derby

Charlie Taylor, Derby Socialist Party

After years of failing to pay women equally, Derby City Labour council's pay review will see many women and some male council workers lose thousands of pounds from their annual pay. The council claims to be implementing 'single status' - equal pay - but instead they are stealing from some groups of workers (usually women!) to pay other groups.

As reported in the Derby Evening Telegraph one woman faces a cut of 16,000 and a couple who both work for the council will see their salaries collectively cut by 17,000. Changes to terms and conditions will mean 52 week contracts will be cut to term time only, with up to seven weeks loss in pay.

Workers pay

This is robbing Peter to pay Paul and as always it is the workers who are forced to pay. The council says it is a government-ordered review and they had no choice in the matter.

Where have we heard this before? The council says it has to implement massive cuts to its services and there is nothing it can do. The council has given employees until 2 January next year to sign up to the new contracts or face dismissal. Some may be offered their jobs back but this would be on the inferior terms and conditions.

This issue could potentially split workers unless the unions are prepared to launch a determined campaign around the call for 'No wage cuts! Fund equal pay'. Up to this point Unison has advised its members not to sign the new contracts in order to preserve their legal rights and are just advising workers to appeal against their individual contract decisions.

Negotiations

Unison should oppose pay cuts in the name of equality and link this to fighting the slaughter of our local jobs and services. Unison has been in negotiations with the council and now is the time to build on the anger and prepare for industrial action on this issue.

Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn has called on Labour councils to fight austerity and to stand together. The Socialist Party, as part of Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition (TUSC), opposes all cuts to jobs and services and calls on councils to set needs budgets and to build a mass campaign demanding the shortfall be made up by central government. This call would receive as much tremendous support as the election of Corbyn on an anti-austerity programme.

Derby school support staff protested against pay cuts outside the council offices on 7 October.

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Finance appeal

The coronavirus crisis has laid bare the class character of society in numerous ways. It is making clear to many that it is the working class that keeps society running, not the CEOs of major corporations.

The results of austerity have been graphically demonstrated as public services strain to cope with the crisis.

The government has now ripped up its 'austerity' mantra and turned to policies that not long ago were denounced as socialist. But after the corona crisis, it will try to make the working class pay for it, by trying to claw back what has been given.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
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In The Socialist 7 October 2015:


Socialist Party news and analysis

'No time to lose' to organise against austerity

Kick out the Tories!

Back our doctors and nurses

NHS cutters pay doctors not to refer sick patients to hospitals

Tories: let pensioners freeze to death, they can't vote us out then

Them & Us


Socialist Party feature

The housing crisis - a crisis of the profit system


International socialist news and analysis

Catalonia

International news in brief


Workplace news and analysis

Emotional and inspiring strikers secure victory

Junior doctors campaign

RMT president election: back Sean Hoyle

Steely anger in Redcar as plant is mothballed

No wage cuts! Fund equal pay in Derby

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

100,000 march against Tory cuts

Kick out the Tory entryists

Anger after violent youth deaths in south London

Enthusiasm for socialism at freshers fairs

Leeds to get 'ethical' letting agency

Cuts to school crossing supervision in Derbyshire


 

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Derby:

triangleDerby academies closed by strikes against brutal cuts and changes

triangleDerby Toyota plant Covid crisis

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Pay:

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Equal pay:

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Cuts:

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Council:

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Labour:

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Unions:

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TUSC:

triangleWe need councillors who will end housing crisis - vote TUSC in Staines on 22 July

Council workers:

trianglePublic sector pay - Prepare for action!

Labour Party:

triangleLabour expulsions confirm need for new mass workers' party

Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition:

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