Thanks to an invitation to make my views on the Budget known on the Jeremy Vine Show, I even had a chance to tell Radio 2 listeners that we would be meeting tonight in Lewisham to bring together trade unionists to discuss strike action against cuts and privatisation!
(Eight minutes in on the iplayer link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/b00sv7ks)
Speakers from UCU, UNISON, GMB, PCS and the Trades Council came along to discuss joint action and their own individual disputes.
The meeting unanimously agreed fthe following motion on the Budget and Academies Bill:
This Association agrees that the Union, locally and nationally, must mount a determined campaign to defend pay, pensions and conditions and our schools and public services from this Government’s cuts and privatisation plans.
We are angered that the Budget is targeting public sector workers by proposing that teachers and other colleagues pay for a financial crisis that was none of our making. These cuts will only damage our living standards and damage the economy as well.
We oppose the Academies Bill and Gove’s plans for Free Schools. Both proposals are intended to dismantle Local Authority schooling so as to undermine planned local comprehensive provision and staff pay, conditions and trade union organisation.
We recognise that the severity of these attacks requires an urgent response from trade unions and local communities working together to defend public services.
• We urge all school reps to organise joint union school meetings to explain to staff about the attacks we face and to organise joint opposition to cuts and Academies.
• We ask every NUT member to feedback any news that they hear about schools seeking to become Academies so that we can target our campaigning activities.
• We invite NUT members to attend the NUT Officers’ Committee on Monday July 5th at the LLDC where we will be reviewing our local campaigning activity.
• We agree to liaise with other unions, the Trades Council and other local campaigns to set up a joint committee to oppose cuts and attacks on services, support each other’s campaigns and to organise further protests, meetings and public activities.
We call on the NUT Executive and the emergency SFC Committee to:
• Urgently liaise with other trade unions and the TUC to fix a date for a national trade union called demonstration to focus opposition to cuts and privatisation
• Announce that we will be balloting for national strike action against the Government attacks in the Autumn Term and to call on members and Local Associations to build for a successful ballot result.