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From The Socialist newspaper, 11 September 2019

PCS strike at BEIS: "The life we live is not liveable"

BEIS strikers joined on the picket line by socialist PCS general secretary election candidate Marion Lloyd (right), photo Paula Mitchell

BEIS strikers joined on the picket line by socialist PCS general secretary election candidate Marion Lloyd (right), photo Paula Mitchell   (Click to enlarge)

PCS members working as cleaners and catering staff at the government's business department, BEIS, are on indefinite strike. The workers are employed by private companies Aramark and ISS. Striker Joshua Ameyaw spoke to London Socialist Party secretary Paula Mitchell and explained why they are on strike.

"The life we live is not liveable. We work in a government department and yet we can't get the London living wage (10.55). We can't pay bills, we can't look after our families, some of us are in debt.

We took several days of strike action but there was no good news from the managers, so we decided 'enough is enough' and on 15 July started an indefinite strike.

Our strike has involved pickets and protests, and we've had great support from other trade unionists and socialists. For these two weeks, the porters, security and reception staff are on strike with us, picketing every day, which is a real boost to everybody.

Boris Johnson and the Tory government don't care about people like us, they don't do anything for poor people.

Johnson says he thinks staff in government departments should get the London living wage - so go on then, pay up!

We're not begging for anything, just what we deserve. We need a government like Labour with socialist policies. We'll carry on fighting but we also want a general election as soon as possible.

They have to bring this dispute to an end. We want the living wage but we also want decent terms and conditions, good holiday pay, good sick pay. At the moment when we're sick we don't get paid for three days! And we want to be taken back in-house."

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In The Socialist 11 September 2019:


International socialist news and analysis

Far right makes gains in Germany

South Africa: Xenophobic violence - a product of failed capitalist policies

West Papuans demand self-determination in London


What we think

Tories in tatters: Corbyn must seize the time


Opinion

Capitalist 'democracy' v socialist democracy


Workplace news

TUC: Lost opportunity to organise a united struggle

NSSN lobby of TUC: Upbeat meeting calls for trade union lead to boot out Tories

Fighting PCS general secretary needed - Marion Lloyd: Why I am standing

End austerity in the civil service: General election now

PCS strike at BEIS: "The life we live is not liveable"

Unions must fight to make bus drivers and passengers safe

Asda workers protest against worse contract

UCU ballots - yes to strike action on pensions, pay, workloads and equality

Workplace news in brief


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Students and workers unite against fees, low pay climate change

Tory meltdown - Organise to finish them off

Another London block of flats destroyed by fire - remove unsafe cladding now!

Leeds pensioners occupy BBC to save free TV licenses

Frimley hospital staff fight back-door privatisation

Leicester Kashmir protest rejects religious smokescreen

Salisbury welcomes Socialist campaigners

Socialist newspaper sales round-up

Coventry: 100 pack meeting against congestion charge

Climate strikes: trade union round-up


Scotland

Scotland and Brexit: Developing threat to the capitalist union


 

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