Join the Socialist Party Join us today!

Printable version Printable version

Facebook   Twitter

Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/990/27173

From The Socialist newspaper, 11 April 2018

Surrey Unison takes the anti-austerity message to the chancellor's back yard

Trade unionists and campaigners rallying for pay at Runnymede in Surrey, photo by Surrey Unison

Trade unionists and campaigners rallying for pay at Runnymede in Surrey, photo by Surrey Unison   (Click to enlarge)

Paul Couchman, Surrey Unison branch secretary (personal capacity) and Socialist Party member

In one of the best local demos for many years, Surrey County Unison members turned out, alongside their sisters and brothers from across the South East region, to protest in the constituency of Philip Hammond MP.

The rally was symbolically held at the site of the signing of the Magna Carta over 800 years ago on the banks of the River Thames at Runnymede. Unison members were joined by Fire Brigades Union, RMT transport union and Unite the Union banners as well as several local Labour Party activists. The Socialist Party in Unison was well represented with dozens of activists, banners and placards and around half of the day's speakers.

Poverty

I outlined why our Unison branch called the demo - with 30% of children in some parts of Surrey living below the poverty line and foodbank use among working parents up fourfold in the last four years. It is impossible for the average worker to get somewhere decent to live.

One recent report showed that you would need to earn 85 an hour to afford to buy the average Surrey home. The protest's call for a 10-an-hour minimum wage is a modest step towards fair wages for Surrey council staff and other public sector workers.

Surrey council has imposed an effective pay freeze for nearly a decade and one of the knock-on effects of government austerity is that less and less money is available to pay those community sector companies who have picked up all the outsourced work like home care.

One charity in Surrey has had its local authority funding slashed to the point where it has made pay cuts of 2,000 to 3,000 a year in its care workers' salaries. Two Unison reps from this sector proudly carried the branch banner at the front of the demo.

Trade unionists and campaigners rallying for pay at Runnymede in Surrey, photo by Surrey Unison

Trade unionists and campaigners rallying for pay at Runnymede in Surrey, photo by Surrey Unison   (Click to enlarge)

Buoyant mood

The mood was buoyant but frustrated. Speaker after speaker called for serious coordinated national action on pay.

This protest could not have come at a better time with all the capitulations over pay going on at the moment. A clear majority of the best activists from right across the region were there and the day was a huge success.

I said: "We will use the mood here and the photos from the day to build our local campaigns on public sector pay. We can and will achieve a 10-an-hour minimum wage rate in Surrey and beyond. We will continue to fight for a fair local pay increase this year - even if the unions at national level don't appear to be fighting back."

Around 70 was collected towards a May Day greeting in the Socialist from all those attending.

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


In The Socialist 11 April 2018:


What we think

Alienation and austerity behind London deaths - fight for socialism

No to bombing Syria


Socialist Party news and analysis

Gender pay gap figures show need for trade union action

Child poverty to hit 5m by 2021 - strikes can stop the cuts


Socialist Party comments and reviews

Striking analysis in heat of 1917 will deepen any reader's understanding

Moving look at school students' many perspectives on sexism

The Socialist inbox


Socialist Party workplace news

NEU conference: Teachers vote to strike over pay and workload

PCS elections: Vote for Democracy Alliance candidates!

Surrey Unison takes the anti-austerity message to the chancellor's back yard

McStrike: ballot for strike action at six McDonald's stores

FCC Wilmington refuse workers' strike in hull stands firm

Aberdeen workers step up strike action against profiteering First Bus


Customs union

A socialist approach to Corbyn and a customs union


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Save our NHS candidate contesting South Yorkshire mayor election

South West Socialist Party conference

Socialist Party meeting to discuss fightback against cuts to women's services

To produce the Socialist we need a building - help us keep ours!

Fighting fire cuts in Wirral

Hull City supporters fight to reclaim their club and the game


Local elections 2018

May elections: a chance to fight attacks on health and social care


International socialist news and analysis

Defend socialist councillor Kshama Sawant against lawsuits

Poland: huge demos against right wing government's abortion ban

Workers' protests against state repression in China and Hong Kong

Ireland: March against misogyny and injustice


 

Home   |   The Socialist 11 April 2018   |   Join the Socialist Party

Subscribe   |   Donate   |   Audio  |   PDF  |   ebook






Related links:

Surrey:

triangleSurrey: save our children's centres

triangle'Austerity Kills' is message of Woking protest

triangleJoin the march through Woking against austerity

triangleThreat of action defeats pay cut at Surrey council

triangleStaines fire services saved

Unison:

triangleWorkplace and union news in brief

triangleUnison: Democracy and the right to speak out are under threat

triangleUnison union campaigns for school support staff action

Austerity:

triangleStruggling unis account for bulk of unconditional offers - end education marketisation!

triangleTory Brexit farce, Corbyn and unions: Call mass action now

triangleTory on homeless: "tear down these tents"

Anti-austerity:

triangleCouncils can fight cuts!

Public sector:

triangleHealth services in meltdown - fight to save our NHS

Minimum wage:

triangle'Fat Cat Friday' shows where all the money's gone

Care workers:

triangleBirmingham: hostile Labour council attacks striking workers

Unions:

triangleFrance gilets jaunes' backed by mass strike action

South East:

triangleEDF Energy strike victory against vehicle tracker device

Paul Couchman:

triangleComment: Socialism and truth about Zane

Reports and campaigns

Reports and campaigns

15/2/19

Climate change

Youth strike for the climate reports: "There's no planet B"

13/2/19

Turkey

'Spot' conference opposes authoritarianism in Turkey

13/2/19

Liverpool

Liverpool: 200 march to commemorate Robert Tressell

13/2/19

Nottingham

300 turn out for Corbyn in Nottingham marginal

13/2/19

Socialist Party

Why I joined: "why is their life so different from mine?"

13/2/19

Tamil Solidarity

Arrest Brigadier Fernando - defend the right to protest

13/2/19

Newham

Newham: women's refuge funds halved - Labour must use the 500m reserves

13/2/19

Southampton

Southampton: Labour plans 15m cuts - vote Socialist in Coxford by-election

13/2/19

Union

Workplace and union news in brief

13/2/19

Enfield

Enfield: striking against academisation - fighting for a no-cuts budget

13/2/19

Leicester

Leicester college workers refuse to accept cut in terms and conditions

13/2/19

Glasgow

Glasgow: nationalise the threatened 'Caley' railway depot

13/2/19

PCS

Fight for a socialist-led PCS - fight to win the national pay campaign

13/2/19

RMT

Heroic RMT guards beat back Northern rail in fight against dangerous driver-only operation

13/2/19

Birmingham

Victory to Birmingham bin workers

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


February 2019

January 2019

2018

2017

2016

2015

2014

2013

2012

2011

2010

2009

2008

2007

2006

2005

2004

2003

2002

2001

2000

1999