Link to this page: https://www.socialistparty.org.uk/issue/673/12130
The Socialist 1 June 2011 |
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Strike - to defend jobs and pensions
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Marching against NHS cuts and privatisation, photo Paul Mattsson (Click to enlarge)
The National Shop Stewards Network (NSSN) conference will meet on Saturday 11 June in Camden, London, to help take forward the battle against all cuts and attacks on workers' pay, pensions and conditions being made by the government, councils and big businesses. Trade unionists and campaigners spoke to the Socialist about why they are attending the conference - and why you should too.
"The conference is a great opportunity to bring activists together to give confidence to help build for maximum support for the 30 June coordinated strike action over pensions, involving civil servants, teachers and lecturers. But it's also an opportunity to increase the number of unions involved after the 30th to stop the attacks on our jobs, services and pensions."
Katrine Williams, PCS civil service union, DWP Group vice-president
"The government's austerity programme, carried out on behalf of the bankers and the rich in society, is now affecting millions of ordinary working class families. Trade union organised resistance is central to defeating the Con-Dems' cuts.
We need to build up a network of thousands of active trade unionists, across all union organisations such as branches, reps' and stewards' committees, so that at each stage of the battle against the government's programme we can build solidarity with each other. The NSSN conference on 11 June will be a key stage in this."
Dave Nellist, Coventry Socialist Party councillor
"Liverpool city council has shed 1,000 jobs already this year and there's a further £50 million of cuts to be found next year. That's going to mean many more hundreds of lost jobs, closures, cuts to services. I think it's vital that shop stewards right across the country get organised and coordinate our activities. Sections of other councils have already taken action, like in Southampton. We need to be linked up."
Dave Walsh, Unite the Union member and Liverpool city council worker
"As a London Ambulance worker, where we are facing 900 jobs cuts, I'm going to the NSSN conference to build solidarity across all sectors and unions for the fights ahead."
Steve Harbord, personal capacity
"I am going to the conference because I want to meet and work with other Unison members who want to make our union into a fighting one, not linked to New Labour and against all cuts."
An East Midlands Unison member
"I am going to the NSSN conference to forge links with other trade unionists in order that we mobilise for a campaign for a general strike."
Les Woodward, Remploy trade union national convenor, personal capacity
Come to the National Shop Stewards Network conference!
If you agree that we shouldn't have to pay for the banksters' bailouts and want to help organise a fighting strategy against all cuts, come to the NSSN conference.
Speakers include: Alex Gordon, RMT rail union president, Janice Godrich, PCS civil service union president, Keith Gibson, locked-out Saltend worker, and Frank Morris, blacklisted Olympic worker.
Saturday 11 June
11.30am-4pm, registration opens at 10.30am
South Camden Community School, Charrington Street, London NW1 1RG
PO Box 54498, London E10 9D