Reports and Campaigns
Post Office keywords:
Reports and campaigns:
AWE pension strikers vow to fight on
Nick Chaffey, Southern Socialist Party
Thousands of workers at the Atomic Weapons Establishment (AWE) were stripped of their defined benefit pension scheme on 1 February by AWE bosses Lockheed Martin, Jacobs and Serco.
Unite the Union members have taken six days of strike action and have vowed to fight on, demanding their pensions are defended and transferred to the Ministry of Defence pension scheme.
AWE was privatised by the Tories in 1987 with 'ironclad' promises that pensions would be protected. These changes have been imposed on the unions who have vowed to fight on, determined to defend their pensions from voracious corporations looking to boost their profits.
Unite is well organised at AWE, representing 600 workers at the site. Strike days have seen all work at AWE come to a halt.
AWE is a key local employer, many families work here, and older workers understand that this attack on pensions will be a major hit to younger workers who will lose most from these changes. Unite strikers also recognise that this is the thin end of the wedge with the attack on pensions likely to be followed by further attacks.
Unite regional secretary Jennie Formby told a strike rally: "Recently, carmaker BMW, US multinational Honeywell, Gatwick Airport Ltd, Diageo and the Post Office have all announced that they are planning to close their defined benefit pension schemes. Unite is pledged to fight the move to the defined contribution option by all these organisations."
Strikers are raising the need to strike together to escalate pressure on companies and the government. Pickets we spoke to see this as part of a wider austerity attack by employers and the government.
Len McCluskey came to support the picket lines in January saying: "Our members feel deeply betrayed. They have Unite's 100% support and solidarity in this dispute."
18 Apr Young people need homes
13 Apr No to the bombing of Syria!
Phone our national office on 020 8988 8777
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