Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/351/5806
The Socialist 12 June 2004 |
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'Pay Us A Living Wage'
WAR IN Iraq, privatisation, cuts in public services -
these are issues that ordinary people wanted to punish Blair for in the
elections. But workers' anger in the workplace is also erupting over low pay,
attacks on pensions and conditions, and job cuts.
Like the Grim Reaper, Gordon Brown wants to axe 80,000
jobs in the public sector, including 30,000 in the Department for Work and
Pensions (DWP). Workers in this sector are so low paid that many are claiming
the very benefits that they are responsible for administering!
Now their union, PCS, is preparing for more strike days in
the campaign for a living wage. PCS member David Burke from Bradford told the
socialist: "The members are still very angry about low pay. They want to make
it clear to the management that we will not wait until Christmas for a pay
offer, like in previous years. If there is no decent offer on the table by 1
July then we will give notice of two days of strike action".
Across Scotland, nursery nurses went on all-out strike for
several weeks to win a better pay deal. More and more workers are realising
that they need to take action to end low pay and to defend their jobs and
conditions. Even the TUC felt compelled to respond to workers' anger by
organising a demonstration on pensions on 19 June.
It was Socialist Party members in PCS who initiated the
call for this demonstration. The Socialist Party believes that it should be
the springboard for a one-day strike of all public-sector workers, uniting
with workers in other sections and service users to defend the public sector.