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From The Socialist newspaper, 5 May 2021

Go Ahead offers deal to Manchester bus drivers - but workers remain on strike for now

Strikers at 'Go North West' in Manchester Photo: Unite North West

Strikers at 'Go North West' in Manchester Photo: Unite North West   (Click to enlarge)

Bus drivers employed by Go North West in Manchester have been taking all-out, continuous strike, since the 28 February. The company is trying to fire and rehire its workers on vastly inferior contracts.

Speaking at the Manchester May Day rally on 1 May, Unite branch secretary Colin Hayden said: "Today marks the start of the tenth week of our industrial action against fire and rehire. Our members decided they will not stand for the industrial terrorism of fire and rehire. Now we have had a deal from the Go Ahead group. It says fire and rehire has been withdrawn. Two sacked members will be given their jobs back. Sham, bogus disciplinaries have been stopped. But the deal is not done yet. We will return to work if and when our members vote for the deal. Until then we will be on strike."

The 400 workers have been fighting a 10% cut in bus drivers, plans to force workers to work longer for no additional pay, resulting in them being 2,500 a year worse off, and the tearing up of existing sick pay policy, which would force workers to work when they are sick or should be self-isolating during the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Socialist Party calls for an end to fire and rehire, no pay cut for drivers and renationalisation of bus services.

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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 5 May 2021:


What we think

Capitalist sleaze and cronyism


Union elections

Unite general secretary election nomination stage

Unison: We need a fighting, democratic, member-led union to stop the austerity attacks

Four Socialist Party members elected to NEU executive - a thirst for action and a fighting leadership


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Colombia: Mass trade union-led protests force tax retreat


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Covid, capitalism and mental health


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Hands off our NHS

New law ignores economic barriers to escaping domestic abuse

Cladding: Tories refuse to protect leaseholders again


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Sparks block Cardiff building site against deskilling

Vote 'yes' in the PCS DWP ballot

Beal High School strike against sick policy resumes

Go Ahead offers deal to Manchester bus drivers

Metroline buses to face summer of strikes unless it drops 'remote sign-on'


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Why you should join the Socialist Party

Defend the right to protest - to resist bosses' attacks


Readers' opinion

The Socialist Inbox


 

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