Glasgow Labour leaders deluged with protests in support of workers’ strike

Unison members striking against ICT privatisation photo Socialist Party Scotland, photo Socialist Party Scotland

Unison members striking against ICT privatisation photo Socialist Party Scotland, photo Socialist Party Scotland   (Click to enlarge: opens in new window)

Matt Dobson, Socialist Party Scotland

The attempted scabbing operation by Glasgow Labour council in an effort to undermine Unison’s strike action against privatisation of ICT services has been pushed back. Thousands of emails from across the trade union and labour movement were sent to the council administration and Labour politicians in protest.

The recruitment adverts for scab labour have not yet been acted on and are currently dormant. Management are now talking to the union.

ICT workers and the union will need to remain vigilant as the council may try and use other avenues to recruit workers to break the strike.

Protests should still be made to the Labour council and Labour politicians over the ICT privatisation and their anti-union tactics. Solidarity should also be sent to the ICT workers and Glasgow Unison.

Outrageously however all ten Labour councillors on the council executive voted the privatisation proposal through again.

Socialist Party Scotland and Socialist Party members have been mobilising across the trade union and labour movement to protest and build. Our members raised the issue at the Unison NEC and the Unison Scotland council who both gave full support for the strike action.

The two month-long planned strike by 39 Glasgow Unison ICT workers against the privatisation of their and their colleagues’ jobs by the Labour council has concluded its first week with daily lively pickets and protests. Strikers braved minus temperatures to picket from 2 December.

The 39 determined strikers were joined by over 200 colleagues in a mass protest outside a Labour group meeting on 7 December. Workers sang Wham’s Last Christmas to the Glasgow council Labour group changing the lyrics to: “Last Christmas you gave us your word, but the very next day, you took it away. This year to save us from tears, we’re taking industrial action.”

ICT worker Lorna told the Socialist: “It’s important we all came out today to support our strikers, the pressure the council are trying to force on them and the union is disgusting”.

One striker told protesters through the megaphone he had been a Labour voter all his life and an active election campaign supporter but this dispute had led him to break from the party.

It’s a message that should be addressed by Jeremy Corbyn who has not spoken up against the actions of the Labour council, despite calls to do so by Glasgow Unison. One of the ‘Corbyn-supporting’ councillors who is involved with Momentum, Matt Kerr, voted for the privatisation at the council executive.

  • Send urgent messages of protest to the chief executive of Glasgow City Council [email protected] and Labour leader Frank McAveety [email protected]
  • Labour affiliated trade unions should send motions to constituency Labour parties condemning the actions of Glasgow City Council
  • Email Jeremy Corbyn at [email protected] to ask him to intervene to stop the privatisation
  • Send messages of support to the Unison strikers to Glasgow City Unison at [email protected]