Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/957/25867

From The Socialist newspaper, 26 July 2017

Barts health strike: Low pay, no way!

Singing, dancing, militant picket lines and protests by Barts health workers will continue in the new 14-day strike, photo Paul Mattsson

Singing, dancing, militant picket lines and protests by Barts health workers will continue in the new 14-day strike, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Paula Mitchell, London Socialist Party

Serco strikers in Barts health trust in east London have led a magnificent fight so far!

Ten days of strike action with big, bold, noisy picket lines, marches, rallies and dancing in the streets, have been backed up with visits to workplaces seeking solidarity and protests at employment agencies.

A thousand people marched through east London to back the heroic strikers on 15 July. The boldness of the picket lines was brought on to the streets with music, singing and chanting.

Bright red Unite banners were joined with union and community banners from across London. Socialist Party placards were held high demanding 'Serco pay up' and 'low pay no way'.

John McDonnell, Labour shadow chancellor, spoke in support and then appeared on the Andrew Marr Show the next day to put Tory chancellor Philip Hammond on the spot about his scandalous remarks that public sector workers are overpaid.

Later, Mile End hospital cleaner Malgorzata Sacewicz and Unite branch secretary Len Hockey appeared on Channel 4 to say Tory millionaire ministers are living on a different planet.

In the first two days of the strike Serco claimed they were doing fine. But seven days in, photos appeared in the press of the chaos in the hospitals.

No serious offer has been made, so a 14-day strike has now begun. But none of this mess is necessary - Serco should just pay up!

This strike is attracting attention from the national press and trade unionists around the country. Why? Because the heroic battle being waged by these low paid workers speaks for us all.

After years of austerity, being told to tighten our belts, work harder, that there is no choice, working class people are saying no more!

The raw anger that was expressed in the Brexit vote began to find a political voice in Corbyn's election manifesto. In the Barts strike it finds an organised expression in militant trade unionism.

These strikers are fighting the super exploitation of migrant workers by standing up and fighting as a class - black, white, Asian, migrant workers on strike together.

One, Ebrima Sonka, said: "We just have to make our mark. We know they're not going to give up easily, they're a big multinational company. Nothing is going to be given to us on a platter, we have to fight for it. It is our right to fight for what we need. In 20 years to come there will be people who say those are the people who fought for what we are enjoying."

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell addressed the strike protest on 15 July, photo Paul Mattsson

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell addressed the strike protest on 15 July, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Barts strikers are fighting the reality of decades of privatisation, bullying and intensification of work. The same profit-driven policies that led to the catastrophic fire at Grenfell Tower have led to millions of working class people struggling to get by every day.

Solidarity and donations have been pouring in from trade unionists across London and around the country. These include support from the national executive of the PCS civil service union.

The Socialist Party and National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) will keep working hard to spread support for the strike. Also workers should do workplace collections. Waltham Forest Trades Council has set up a support group (contact secretary Linda Taaffe lindataaffe66@btinternet.com).

Socialist Party members attended an international meeting in Barcelona from 17-22 July. We made solidarity videos with health workers and trade unionists from six different European countries who will also raise support and protests in their unions. 400 trade unionists and socialists sent a solidarity photo, and Irish socialist Solidarity MPs also sent a message of support.

The British Airways cabin crew strike and workers preparing to strike at the Bank of England have linked up with the Barts Serco strike. On 27 July, nurses in the Royal College of Nursing will be protesting to scrap the public sector pay cap and Barts Serco strikers should join up with them too.

Workers were also delighted to have support from strikers at the University of London and London School of Economics.

Socialist Party members and the NSSN have long campaigned for the TUC to coordinate action and call a 24-hour general strike to defeat Tory austerity. Come to the NSSN lobby of TUC conference on 10 September at 1pm, Arundel Suite, Holiday Inn, 137 King's Road, Brighton, BN1 2JF.

Donate to the Socialist Party

Coronavirus crisis - 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.
  • Our 'fighting coronavirus workers' charter', outlines a programme to combat the virus and protect workers' living conditions.
  • 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.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our special coronavirus appeal.

Please donate here.

All payments are made through a secure server.

My donation

 

Your message: 

 


In The Socialist 26 July 2017:


What we think

Right wing attempts to use single market against Corbyn


Socialist Party workplace news

Barts health strike: Low pay, no way!

Birmingham bin workers stand firm

Bron Afon workers strike against 3,000 pay cut

Court victory for PCS and all trade unions

Tesco's 10% pay increase accompanied by cuts and job losses

Mears workers escalate action to all-out strike

Workers' campaign underway to stop ward closure

Workplace news in brief


International socialist news and analysis

Building workers' struggle and the forces of international socialism


Socialist Party news and analysis

Abolish tuition fees and student debt!

Education cuts: Tories buckling under public pressure

BBC yawning pay gaps revealed

Homelessness and evictions soar under the Tories

Them & Us


Art and the Russian revolution

Russia 1917: how art helped make the revolution


Young Socialists

Young people...fight for a future, fight for socialist policies


Grenfell Tower

Grenfell survivors tell Tories: "Step down and resign"

Vigil for Grenfell

Tenants' meeting reveals huge anger


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Corbyn visits Southampton on marginal seat tour

Huddersfield A&E closure referred to Jeremy Hunt

From Militant to the Socialist Party - what you thought

Socialist sales at Salford station

Street cleaners support the Birmingham bin strike

'Freedom riders' lobby against violent policing

Council meeting abandoned after undercover policing protest

Education cuts forced back in Hackney

Southampton councillors faced with angry anti-cuts campaigners

Plans to bring A-levels back to Knowsley abandoned


 

Home   |   The Socialist 26 July 2017   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

East London:

triangleEast London Socialist Party: India, coronavirus & capitalism

triangleSouth East London Socialist Party: Introduction to Marxist Economics

triangleSouth East London Socialist Party: What way forward for the NHS?

triangleSouth East London Socialist Party: Black Lives Matter

triangleEast London Socialist Party: India - coronavirus & capitalism

Health:

triangleA socialist NHS fit for heroes

triangleA timely read about a pandemic that overwhelms society

triangleVictory for Royal Glamorgan A&E!

triangleContact tracing fiasco: You can't believe a word the government tells us

Barts:

triangleNorth London Socialist Party: Save our NHS - the lessons of the Barts strike

triangleNHS we're ready to fight

triangleSustained mass movement needed to stop Tories wrecking our NHS

Pay:

triangleReaders' opinion

trianglesocialism2020

Low pay:

triangle6.5 million working poor: Fight to end low pay

Strike:

triangleTower Hamlets council strike

Workers:

triangleSelling the Socialist

London:

triangleCapitalism and corruption go hand in hand

Socialist Party:

triangleBLM has not stopped - protesters flock to Socialists

Solidarity:

triangleEquity: Solidarity with Maxine Peake

NSSN:

triangleCome to the NSSN conference

Unite:

triangleUnite: elect fighting socialist reps

Migrant workers:

triangle39 migrants found dead in Essex lorry container

Public sector:

triangleSouth Africa: Building jobs and living wage campaign

Waltham Forest:

triangleSelling the Socialist: we're back!

Asian:

triangleBlack and Asian Covid-19 deaths: an indictment of capitalist inequality

Tower Hamlets:

triangleEast London bin workers strike to get back unpaid holiday pay

National Shop Stewards Network:

triangleNSSN conference - 4th July

Len Hockey:

triangleDeal concludes Barts health strike - "We have raised our heads high"

John McDonnell:

triangleDefend the right to strike! RMT and NSSN lobby parliament

Privatisation:

triangleRenationalisation of the probation service

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

1/7/20

Fighting Fund

Fighting Fund: Target smashed by half time

1/7/20

Equity

Equity union president elections: re-elect Maureen

1/7/20

PCS

Change in leadership needed to secure union's future

1/7/20

Black Lives Matter

BLM has not stopped - protesters flock to Socialists

1/7/20

Ken Douglas

Red flags line road for Ken

1/7/20

Leeds

Leeds City Council in danger of bankruptcy

1/7/20

Socialist

socialism2020

1/7/20

The Socialist

Selling the Socialist

1/7/20

Cardiff

Cardiff community fights nursery closure: Council must step in

1/7/20

NSSN

Come to the NSSN conference

1/7/20

Sunday trading

Sunday trading: Government blinks first

1/7/20

Equity

Equity: Solidarity with Maxine Peake

1/7/20

Tower Hamlets

Tower Hamlets council strike

1/7/20

Ministry of Justice

MoJ cleaners' covid outbreak

26/6/20

Ken Douglas

Memorial funds for Ken Douglas and Mick Cotter

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: 079 8202 1969

East Mids: 077 3797 8057

London: 07748 534 891

North East: 078 4114 4890

North West 079 5437 6096

South West: 077 5979 6478

Southern: 078 3368 1910

Wales: 079 3539 1947

West Mids: 024 7655 5620

Yorkshire: 077 0671 0041

ABOUT US

ARCHIVE

Alphabetical listing


July 2020

June 2020

May 2020

April 2020

March 2020

February 2020

January 2020

2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999