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From: The Socialist issue 1085, 6 May 2020: Bosses push to lift lockdown - they only care about profits

Search site for keywords: EDF Energy - Workers - Pay - Energy - Coronavirus

EDF Energy workers furloughed on 100% pay

Unite has successfully negotiated that nearly 500 EDF Energy workers will be furloughed on 100% pay during the coronavirus pandemic.

The agreement covers meter installers, meter fixers and revenue collection workers in London, the south east and south west regions.

Unite regional officer Onay Kasab said: "The agreement reached with EDF Energy will protect the pay and jobs of our members during the current coronavirus crisis.

"What we have achieved is the fundamental and central role of a trade union - defending workers' interests in the workplace, through thick and thin, and especially so when times are particularly hard.

"This is the time when a union's values, strength and resilience are truly tested and our reps at EDF have met that challenge 100%.

"This agreement was hammered out because this is a Unite organised work force. Nothing is ever guaranteed - but what this does show, yet again, is that you stand a fighting chance if you are a member of a trade union."

The rest of the non-furloughed staff remains on full pay, and will be either voluntary emergency staff, who are on call, or employees who have volunteered to take part in community schemes - for example, delivering prescriptions and medication to the sick and elderly.

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Finance appeal

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.

  • The Socialist Party's material is more vital than ever, so we can continue to report from workers who are fighting for better health and safety measures, against layoffs, for adequate staffing levels, etc.
  • When the health crisis subsides, we must be ready for the stormy events ahead and the need to arm workers' movements with a socialist programme - one which puts the health and needs of humanity before the profits of a few.
Inevitably, during the crisis we have not been able to sell the Socialist and raise funds in the ways we normally would.
We therefore urgently appeal to all our viewers to donate to our Fighting Fund.

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