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From The Socialist newspaper, 14 February 2018

Threat of action defeats pay cut at Surrey council

Unison pay strike, photo Paul Mattsson

Unison pay strike, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Socialist Party members in Surrey council Unison

A week before Christmas, Surrey County Council told over 300 adult social workers they weren't entitled to the incremental rise that had been agreed and they'd received from 1 July. This amounted to an average of a 1,500 a year pay cut.

The council Unison branch went into dispute and after a successful campaign the ballot result was a 66% turnout, with 85% voting in favour of action. At the final appeal stage, in a direct presentation to the councillors, lead negotiator and Socialist Party member Paul Couchman presented the union's case.

Victory

After four days the councillors decided there would be no change in pay and an 'exception' would be made. This is an important victory for Unison members working as social workers and occupational therapists in Surrey. Suffice to say organising works, we won and all members have received their full increments backdated to 1 July.

We now have to make sure there is a fair pay rise for all staff across the board in 2018.

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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.

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In The Socialist 14 February 2018:


Socialist Party news and analysis

We can win the fight for the NHS

Stop press: victory - campaign saves NHS rehab ward

McDonnell says Labour would put services 'irreversibly' in workers' hands

Tamil youth march for justice

Rent doubles in a decade: cap rents, build council homes!

What we saw: Tory-Blairite EU love-in


Oxfam scandal

Oxfam scandal: we need democratic aid and working class solidarity


Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition

How should TUSC approach the local elections and Brexit negotiations?


Socialist history

Czechoslovakia 1968: 'Prague Spring' challenges Stalinism


International socialist news and analysis

Cape Town drought

Brazil: Lula conviction confirmed

Big political strike against Finnish government's attack on unemployed

France: rallies in support of oppressed Kurdish people


Workplace news and analysis

UCU uni strike: coordinate public sector fightback

Sadiq Khan's bus drivers' London licence doesn't go far enough

Newham teachers strike again as anti-academy pressure mounts

Woolwich Crossrail walkouts to demand promised bonuses

Threat of action defeats pay cut at Surrey council


Socialist Party campaigns

Haringey protests HDV - but Labour fails to kill it off completely

Staines fire services saved

Carlisle debate - socialism or social democracy?

Enjoyable and successful Cardiff Refugee Rights gig


Opinion

I'm now a 'manager' and I can barely manage!

In Windsor none of us want to see homeless people on the street


 

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Related links:

Surrey:

triangleSurrey firefighters to ballot on Christmas industrial action

triangleSurrey Socialist Party: The election, a Corbyn government and fighting austerity

triangleFrimley NHS Trust: Strikers remain determined to defeat privatisation

triangleFive years on - and still no justice for Zane

triangleSurrey: save our children's centres

Council:

triangleLeeds City Council in danger of bankruptcy

triangleCardiff community fights nursery closure: Council must step in

triangleNews in brief

triangleTower Hamlets council strike

Unison:

triangleTrade union activists from across the south of England discuss the battle for safety on the frontline

triangleElectricians pay victory

triangleBig Unison south east regional meeting votes for anti-cuts position

Social workers:

triangleSocial workers lobby Hull City Council

triangleBlairite cuts and restructures make social work dangerous

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